The Resilient Digital City

New LOEWE center with 17.4 million euros in funding

22.06.2019 von

The TU Darmstadt can establish a new center as part of the Hessian research funding programme LOEWE – it is entitled „The Resilient Digital City“ and will be funded by the end of 2023 with a total of 17.4 million euros. This was announced by the Hessian Ministry of Science. Several professors of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology (etit) are involved in the joint project.

In the „emergenCITY“ LOEWE center, solutions are developed to ensure emergency operation for and with information and communication technologies in major cities in times of crisis. Photo: Pixabay

The LOEWE center „emergenCITY“ („Resilient Digital City“) will develop solutions „to provide emergency services for and with information and communication technologies in crisis situations, to provide rapid assistance and to support an efficient return to normality“, explains the scientific coordinator of the center, the Computer Science professor and affiliate member of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology (etit) Matthias Hollick.

For this, the technology must already be able to adjust itself to crisis situations in normal operation „on a self-preparatory basis and detect them autonomously“, said Hollick. In emergency situations, mission-critical services should be provided more quickly. The experience gained should help to be better prepared for future critical situations.

This is also urgently needed: In 2050, two-thirds of the world's population will live in cities. Adaptable and efficient infrastructures are essential for the growth of cities. Digital cities of the future are increasingly using information and communication technologies to provide networked infrastructures, for example in the fields of energy, transport, health, government and administration. The dependence of these systems on information and communication technologies is steadily increasing – and vulnerable to natural events, human and technical failure, as well as violence and terror.

Teams of 23 professors from Computer Science, Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, Mechanical Engineering, Social- and Historical Sciences, Architecture, Economics and Law will conduct joint research within the university network. Leader of the network is the TU Darmstadt, partners are the University of Kassel and the University of Marburg. The etit-professors Anja Klein, Florian Steinke, Abdelhak Zoubir, Heinz Koeppl and Ralf Steinmetz are involved in the project.

Together with the digital city of Darmstadt, an emergenCITY lab will be established for the practical testing of solutions. The Federal Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance, as a further partner, brings in the holistic authority and application view.