Smart Campus Project
The project’s goal is to demonstrate that data, analytics, and immersive visualisation tools can create awareness and support decision-making in the context of campus user wellbeing, campus sustainability, and operational excellence concerning campus facilities. In doing so, it contributes to creating a smarter campus. ECDA leads this initiative with Erasmus Real Estate & Facilities (RE&F), Erasmus Digitalisation & Information Services (EDIS), and the EUR Data Privacy Officers. Students are involved through data analytics projects and student-driven initiatives like the Erasmus sustainability hub. Our academic experts ensure precise experimental design and execution for generating academic insights. External tech partners and startups from our ecosystem are integral to several experiments.
Within the project:
- Our campus serves as a testbed for innovation projects that contribute towards the wellbeing of campus users, campus sustainability, operational excellence, and optimal and durable use of campus facilities.
- We currently have two student projects focusing on visualisation tools (such as a 3D-printed campus model and live data visualisation) and the development of insightful and practical Power BI dashboards. These initiatives serve as starting points for discussion and guidelines within the EUR.
- We are deploying and evaluating new sensors (for measuring air quality) and tools that gauge and visualise the usage and occupancy of study spaces using Wi-Fi and sensor data.
- Researchers will assess the impact of nudges on behaviour within the context of sustainability and wellbeing.
Three key challenges: Wellbeing, sustainability, and mobility
Exploring and experimenting with data-driven solutions for three key challenges will be the core of the project. The three challenges are related to:
- Operational excellence (optimizing the use of spaces and campus facilities, finding available study spaces)
- Wellbeing (how to improve indoor air quality and campus users’ mental health and wellbeing, based on measuring data and taking actions to improve wellbeing)
- Sustainability (monitoring and nudging students’ behavior towards more sustainable behavior, optimization of energy use, changing mobility patterns towards more sustainable alternatives). For this challenge collaboration will take place with the Erasmus Sustainability Hub to stimulate students and staff to come up with ideas.
The project’s approach consists of six key elements:
- Identify and address real-world issues faced by students and staff at Erasmus Campus Woudestein concerning operational excellence, wellbeing, and sustainability.
- Experiment with new technologies, ways of working, and conduct Proof of Concepts (POCs). Campus serves as an academic experiment platform to tackle key challenges.
- Extract lessons from experiences. We offer students opportunities to participate in the project, acquire skills, knowledge, and opportunities to network. We also proactively encourage learning from other smart campus and smart building initiatives, nationally and internationally.
- Share documented findings with internal and external stakeholders, including the City of Rotterdam and the Dutch community of smart campus initiatives within educational institutions. We will leverage various media and visualisation tools to disseminate insights and facilitate stakeholder engagement.
- Inspire the community to learn more about how to organise a smart campus by exploring best practices, experimentation, and knowledge sharing via immersive technologies at the Erasmus Data Collaboratory.
- Lastly, we engage campus users by involving them in the project and providing insights they can use to continue and expand initial pilots after the project.
As part of the project sensors will be placed on several spots over the campus to collect data on air pollution, indoor climate, room usage, heat distribution etc. Next to the sensor data, anonymized data will be collected about campus users. This will create a continuous loop of data collection, analyses, and visualizations, resulting in actions and learning as visualized below.
A series of tangible and digital platforms and dashboards will be set up. These include a 3D model of the campus and an online prototyping environment. Layering data on a 3D model of the campus allows the project to be communicated to the users of the campus and the RE&F team to make simulations of possible changes. It also facilitates evidence-based decision-making about future changes, for example in optimizing the use of facilities, and overall livability. The 3D model will be housed in the Erasmus Data Collaboratory in Polak Building.
A data sandbox environment will be developed to explore how data from different sources can be brought together into one environment for teaching and research purposes.
Several Proof of Concepts will be developed during the project with involvement of external platforms and smart campus solution providers.
A vision for the future Smart Campus
Ultimately, the project should result in a vision for the future Smart Campus, and the associated collaboration agreements and funding. The learning experiences from this project will also be shared with other (university) campuses, the partners and other relevant stakeholder groups.
Bas Boorsma, CDO City of Rotterdam, said “Digitalization is a Force for Good if it contributes to the wellbeing of the citizens in our cities. Given the pandemic experience, public health is top of mind. The Municipality of Rotterdam is therefore both pleased and proud to contribute to the smart campus work Erasmus is executing on, by means of the advanced air quality sensing project we have jointly engaged on.”
Michel Spies, Head of Asset Management a.i. at Real Estate & Facilities said “Collaboration with research and education is for us as critical as it is inspiring. The expectations of a data driven ‘Smart Campus’ will rise in the years to come. We believe we can match these expectations if we collaborate intensively on this subject. Not only within professional services but also with the people for whom we do our work every day. We are looking forward to adding concrete value to our services, our transparency and the sustainable development goals, all in accordance with our Erasmian Values”
For the Smart Campus Project, we’re always open for new input. Do you have an idea how to improve our campus in a data-driven way?
Please contact us via the button below!