The Bartlett School of Sustainable Construction


Breaking the Code in The Bartlett Review 2017

25 January 2018

A new manifesto for data and co-creation in the digital city wants to put social value at the centre of today’s smart city rhetoric.


The ways in which we define and engage with digital city systems is changing. They no longer lie exclusively in the hands of architects, designers, engineers, computer scientists and urban planners; open-source tools and open-data platforms are starting to unlock collaborative opportunities for citizen participation.

For all the promise of greater accountability, new forms of democracy and participation in urban processes, it can, in reality, be difficult for communities to engage.

Breaking the Code is the beginning of a transformative conversation. It takes its starting point Power to the Citizen! - a panel event that brought community groups, academics and digital practitioners into dialogue, generating ideas that have since translated into an eponymous manifesto.

One of a series of essays showcasing radical thinking from across The Bartlett, Breaking the Code by Dr Claire McAndrew dares us to flesh out new forms of digital democracy within the city.

Explore more of the ground-breaking thinking and research to have come out of The Bartlett in 2017 and its impact on the world.