This SSIT Distinguished Lecture was presented by Prof. Clinton Andrews, Rutgers University, US at a Joint Chapter Meeting organised by IEEE UK and Ireland SSIT Chapter and co-hosted by Santa Clara Valley SSIT Chapter, Washington, D/Northern Virginia/Baltimore SSIT Chapter, Pittsburgh SSIT Chapter and SSIT IST-Africa SIGHT on 11 March 2021. Click here to view the recording on IEEE.tv
Not since the era of the family farm has such a large fraction of the employed population worked from home. The spike in remote work due to COVID-19 pandemic is temporary, but it highlights an underlying trend. Remote work at home and in “third” places such as cafes, hotels, and airports has been enabled by access to wireless networks and mobile cloud computing collaboration software. Such a spatial and temporal fragmentation of related work activities is not available to everyone, but it affects an increasing fraction of the population. It features prominently in popular images of the future of work. This presentation examines how the relationship between space, technology, and the workplace has developed over time, how power relations embedded in these overlapping physical and cyberspaces constrain our behavior, and what novel ethical and equity concerns arise in the emerging smart city. It relies on original interview and observation data from the New York (USA) metropolitan area augmented by national statistics. Findings include identification of multiple points where control of overlapping physical and cyberspaces either enables or prevents the fragmentation of work activities. These carry important implications for those who work in the smart city and those who design it.
Clinton Andrews is a professor of urban planning and associate dean for research at the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Rutgers University, New Jersey, USA. He was educated at Brown and MIT in engineering and planning, and worked previously in the private sector and at Princeton University. He teaches public informatics, industrial ecology, green building, and coastal risk. Andrews performs research on how people use the built environment and the implications for work, climate, energy, resilience, sustainability, and health. His books include Humble Analysis: The Practice of Joint Fact-Finding, Regulating Regional Power Systems, and Industrial Ecology and Global Change.
He just completed service as co-editor of the Journal of Planning Education and Research and is now President of the IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology.
He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, a licensed Professional Engineer, a Fellow of AAAS, and an avid experimenter with new methods for collecting field data in urban settings.