BMW Guggenheim Lab has brought to the fore private and public spaces in cities through an innovative new online interactive system. Titled Public/Private, this is a research project that the company has been working on for the past 7 months and is part of their BMW Guggenheim Lab Mumbai venture. Users can play Public/Private to explore privacy in cities around the world. For this on needs to fill in brief personal details, rate 10 places where they seek privacy, and to what level, and share how they feel about privacy in their city. The collective feedback can be used to compare privacy perceptions against other cities based on public feedback.
It includes a privacy study besides a mapping facility of all public spaces in and around Mumbai which is available for viewing on the Lab’s website. Public/Private users will be able to share their experiences and expectations of privacy on spaces, be it at home or work. Each participant will be offered a visual graph that can be then compared with feedback received from other participants. The actual Public/Private set up was designed and developed by Collective Assembly based in New York.
It is ideally suited to the city of Mumbai which is regarded as one of the most densely populated cities in the world. This city of Mumbai has close to 20 million people. The first project called, “Your Place, My Place, or Our Public Space?: Privacy and Spaces in Mumbai,” takes into account feedback received from 1300 persons. Responses to this survey will be from a cross section of Mumbai residents and was conducted as a joint operation between Partners for Urban Knowledge, Action and Research (PUKAR) and Mumbai Lab Team member Aisha Dasgupta.
David van der Leer, curator of the Mumbai Lab said, “During the last two years, the BMW Guggenheim Lab’s programs have encouraged people to take an active role in shaping their cities, but just as important may be the ability of city dwellers to find a sense of privacy within their urban environment.” “The privacy studies initiated by the Mumbai Lab sparked a reimagining of how we think about and use precious public space in cities, and now, with the launch of our new interactive feature, we can open up the conversation to many other cities around the world.”