L’École de design Nantes Atlantique


For the past few months, the Conseil général de Loire-Atlantique (the local council for the area) has been involved in an “open data” initiative in several domains, which will be made public on Monday, April 2, 2012. Keen to participate in this thought process, international students from the Connected Environments program have thought up prospective scenarios to develop the use of public data in a way that will provide a useful service. Feedback from the project can be found in the exhibition at the Hôtel du départment (the local council offices in Nantes) until April 20, 2012.

Working with a local authority on an innovative undertaking

Open data is not only a scheme aiming to increase transparency, but also an opportunity for local economic development. It represents a challenge in terms of encouraging change and innovation for local authorities who are taking up the issue. At the same time, as they were making their data available to the public (launch date: April 2, 2012), the members of the Conseil général de Loire-Atlantique wanted to team up with L’École de design Nantes Atlantique to come up with some prospective ideas for public services which could result from the different data made available to the public.

An international group, a cross-disciplinary project

An initial prospective project was subsequently developed by the Connected Environments group in the International Class, which consists of both foreign and French students. 16 students made up of spatial and interaction designers and representing 9 nationalities, toiled away from November 2011 to January 2012, under the supervision of Grégoire Cliquet, Director of the READi Design Lab, Emmanuel Raillard, Services Designer and Christine Vignaud, architect and scenographer. They dealt with the different domains chosen by the département for this experiment: environment, territory, transport, social initiatives and finance.

The scenario for Ecopoints/Velocean project which encourages the public to discover coastal bike paths. Illustrations A. Dahyot.

Three scenarios for a public exhibition

Out of this collection of work, three proposals for scenarios were selected, restructured and completed.

The first scenario, Ecopoints/Vélocéan (by Jifei Chen, Hasan Cinpolat & Danilo Perozzi), encourages the public to discover coastal bike paths by rewarding cyclists with a system of credits per kilometre, which can be exchanged for tickets for cultural events backed by the département.

The second scenario, Micro Archis (by Caroline Foulon & Marta Serras Robert), gives local inhabitants the chance to have a say about what facilities (temporary or permanent) they would like to see alongside the footpaths and natural beauty spots of the département.

The third scenario, Securimap (by Laura Duteau & Leslie Lelgouarch), aims to improve road safety by providing on the one hand the possibility for cyclists to help pinpoint danger zones, and on the other hand, to pass on this information to motorists via their GPS.

An interactive mapping application on a touch table was also developed by Bakasable for the READi Design Lab, to illustrate the possibilities of exploiting local data on this type of device. All the scenarios as well as the touch table application can be seen at the Hôtel du département from March 19, 2012 for councillors and from March 28th to April 20th for the general public. There was also a special presentation for Philippe Grosvalet, President of the Conseil général, on Friday, March 2nd at the school’s open house.

The entire process was recorded in a web documentary made by the Conseil général, in which students and teaching staff are interviewed on how the project developed and grew.

These projects will also be presented on Monday, April 2, 2012 at the official launching of the Loire-Atlantique Open Data portal (LAOD) at Nantes CCO and should be part of the official programme of Open Data Week in Nantes from May 20-25, 2012.