Define User Cases and Goals

Summary

You need to establish WHY you are using computer vision technology in public spaces and WHAT you want to achieve in order to justify the project legally and ethically. 

Questions

Crowd Monitoring can be unnecessarily invasive. Think about how to approach your project with Privacy by Design as a guiding principle and ask yourself questions like: 

  • What real problem am I trying to solve? 
  • Is crowd monitoring technology necessary?
  • How invasive are these technologies?
See Questions

Resources

During this stage you should take a close look at these resources that will help you define use cases and establish goals ethically and responsibly:

  • Privacy by Design
  • Proportionality
  • Use Case and Goal Examples
See Resources

Video Library

Visit the video library for expert interviews and advice about defining use cases and goals.

In this section we’ll be speaking with the experts:

  1. Ger Baron – CTO City of Amsterdam
  2. Eelco Thiellier – Project Manager CMSA, Traffic & Public Space City Of Amsterdam
Watch Videos

1.1 Questions

There are many ethical considerations to take every step of the way and you need to be aware of the invasiveness of crowd monitoring technology in a social context to inform responsible decisions. 

  • What exactly do we want to achieve?  What (positive) change do we want to enable and how?  Establish goals but try to be realistic.
  • Is there a real problem that can ONLY be solved with a crowd monitoring solution? How do we address and minimize invasiveness? 
  • What will the positive and negative impact be if we use video cameras and camera vision in a public space?  What are the benefits and risks?  
  • What is Privacy by Design and how do we use this as a guiding principle in our project? 
  • Can you implement a crowd monitoring test, project, or solution that is transparent and inclusive rather than exclusively imposing surveillance? 
  • How do I use crowd monitoring with the public in mind to create awareness rather than control? 
  • What assumptions do we want to validate? Do we have the resources to test and confirm hypotheses? 
  • Is there existing data? How do we create a baseline so we can measure impact and define success? 

1.2 Privacy By Design

Privacy By Design is part of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and should be understood at the beginning of any crowd monitoring project. In short it simply means “data protection through technology design.” It is the umbrella to cover your decision making process and ensure responsible and ethical decisions. For more about Privacy by Design visit  the GDPR information webpage https://gdpr-info.eu/issues/privacy-by-design/ 

A good place to start applying Privacy by Design is to think about different crowd monitoring technologies in the context of data ethics and social values. To find out more about visit: 

For a quick scan of the risks and benefits of several sensoring options take a look at the comparison sheet below. 

BENEFITS


YOUR GOALS SHOULD RELATE TO REAL NEEDS AND CREATING SOCIAL IMPACT IN PUBLIC SPACES

  • PUBLIC HEALTH and SAFETY
  • IMPROVE CITY SERVICES
  • OPTIMISE PUBLIC SPACE 
  • SOCIAL DISTANCING
  • REDUCE COSTS
  • ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
  • POLICY / PLANNING

TECHNOLOGY


TECHNOLOGY CAN BE USED TO MONITOR CROWDS.  CONSIDER THE POTENTIAL INVASION TO PRIVACY

  • CCTV 
  • COMPUTER VISION 
  • MOTION SENSORS
  • RADAR 
  • WIFI SNIFFING
  • BLE (Bluetooth)
  • VIBRATION
  • THERMAL 
  • MOBILE APPS and GEO FENCING
  • MICROPHONES and SOUND SENSORS 

RISK


CONSIDER THE LONG TERM SOCIAL CONTEXT AND ETHICAL DANGERS FOR YOUR CROWD MONITORING PROJECT

  • RIGHTS EROSION 
  • PUBLIC TRUST 
  • INVASION OF PRIVACY 
  • SOCIAL ENGINEERING
  • SURVEILLANCE STATE
  • COMPROMISED FREEDOMS
  • LEGAL 

1.2.1 – Proportionality

When deciding what technology to use it is important to assess the proportionality of the measures you are taking to achieve your goal versus how they could limit fundamental rights to the protection of personal data. 

1.2.2 – Use Case and Goal Examples

  • Use Case 1: Recreational Crowd Study http://www.citixl.com/recreational-crowd-study/
  • Use Case 2: OSCM Testing at the Marineterrein.  Counting Vistors During the Hot Summer https://www.marineterrein.nl/en/project/open-source-crowd-monitor/ 
  • Use Case 3: Addressing COVID-19 related social distancing in public spaces with real time interactive data visualizations. https://www.marineterrein.nl/nu/
    • Goal 1: Safety versus privacy: to monitor crowds so we can make public spaces safer without compromising privacy. See expert interview with Mark Wiebes, Chief Innovation Officer, Netherlands Police.
  • Goal 2: Creating real time data to design effective interventions that make a positive impact on public spaces and improve quality of life. See expert interview with Ido Nap, Program Manager Sensing, Netherlands Police.
  • Goal 3: To create insights with data visualizations and dashboards to help the municipal decision makers understand crowd behavior and inform policy. See expert interview with Markus Pfundstein, Founder & Principle Engineer Life Electronic.Are you a municipal innovator with experience in crowd sensing? Share your use case or goal by signing up for the “Decision Canvas” below and we will send you an email with a partnership contribution submission form.

     

1.3 Video Library

The expert interviews are a quick way for you to get some great advice. Before moving on to Step 2: Project Scope & Brief, please take a few minutes to learn from personal experience and insights that will help you think about Use Cases and Goals for your crowd monitoring project.

All expert interviews ask these three questions:

  • What are the biggest challenges for crowd monitoring in public spaces?
  • What are some approaches to address these challenges?
  • What advice can you give innovators thinking about crowd monitoring?

All expert interviews ask three questions like: What are the biggest challenges for crowd monitoring in public spaces? What are some approaches to address these challenges? What advice would you give government innovators thinking about crowd monitoring?

Ger Baron

CTO City of Amsterdam

As the CTO of the city of Amsterdam, Ger talks about justifying the use of crowd monitoring technology and how important it is to ask yourself questions like: what is the problem I am trying to solve? and, how can I design a solution that informs rather than controls people?

Eelco Thiellier

Project Manager CMSA, Traffic & Public Space City Of Amsterdam

Crowd Monitoring System Amsterdam (CMSA) is a city wide program that measures crowd density to identify “hot spots” in public spaces. Eelco provides insights about the complexity of optimizing crowd management with data while keeping the people’s needs in mind, respecting privacy, and providing for the common good.