• Mette Marianne Hiltunen
4. Term, Sustainable Design (M.SC) (Master Programme)
Global climate challenges push an urgent change in the ways we consume, work, and live. While urbanisation only keeps accelerating, cities are in a key role driving sustainable growth. Sharing resources can, however, offer new pathways to a more sustainable and flexible everyday life. This thesis project zooms into the users of Kalasatama Urban Lab, an independently used shared space in the Kalasatama smart district in Helsinki, Finland.

With the intention of understanding user practices in relation to independently booking and using a shared space, this thesis answer to the following problem formulation: How can providers of shared spaces in urban areas enable their independent use and ensure that meeting practices in shared spaces can be further developed and reproduced?

The practices of Kalasatama Urban Lab users are observed and examined in the light of social practice theory which offers a point of departure for the analysis. The theoretical framework is complemented with tools from human-centred design which supports deconstructing meeting practices by allowing a close interaction with the users throughout the project. A user journey map is used to structure and analyse the findings from the observational study.

One of the main findings from observing users and interviewing meeting organisers of Kalasatama Urban Lab was that the space provider should not make the mistake of thinking that all meetings are organised in a similar manner. Also, in order for the independent meeting practice not be abandoned over time, the entire chain from booking the space until using it has to work. This has implications for both the physical as well as the booking platform used for sharing spaces for independent use. By supporting the meeting organiser’s competences, space providers are able to enable more efficient resource consumption in urban areas.
Publication date13 May 2019
ID: 303475431