WIT Press


SHARING NEIGHBOURHOODS: BARRIERS AND DRIVERS TO SHARE SPACES AND THE ROLE OF TECHNOLOGY – THE CASE OF SUPSTAD, NORWAY

Price

Free (open access)

Volume

241

Pages

12

Page Range

331 - 342

Published

2020

Paper DOI

10.2495/SDP200271

Copyright

Author(s)

LARS ARNE BØ, DANIELA BAER, KARIN HØYLAND

Abstract

The importance of third spaces such as libraries and cafes for community building and social interaction is undoubtable in establishing a sense of place and a feeling of belonging. Particularly in decentral urban areas, such as our case study Saupstad in Trondheim (Norway), voluntary activities play an important role in providing social meeting places. We identified technology-specific solutions that can make it easier to share spaces and thereby contribute to facilitating voluntary activities. Since most of the technological solutions on an individual level are designed for indoor space, we have chosen to focus on that, even if there are some solutions for sharing outdoor space as well. We argue that technological solutions, besides good spatial design and architecture, can foster the sharing of spaces, but several barriers limit the sharing of spaces in general and the implementation of technological solutions in particular. Based on a mapping of spaces for shared indoor spaces for voluntary activities and qualitative interviews with the users, we identified the main barriers for sharing. Additionally, interviews with commercial providers of technological solutions for space sharing and those responsible for implementing the technology were conducted to identify factors limiting and enabling the implementation of technological solutions. Our study shows that accessibility to spaces shared for voluntary activities is limited due to physical, organizational, and institutional factors. Technological applications for room booking and smart locks were identified as solutions to solve some of these challenges. We also observed that a good design and architecture of buildings and the neighbourhood in general contribute to space sharing and social participation. We conclude that a combination of technological solutions and good physical design and architecture can foster space sharing at a neighbourhood level and thereby contribute to voluntary activities taking place.

Keywords

third places, space sharing, volunteering, room sharing, smart lock technologies, case study