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Research Projects

Current Projects

COUP: Cockpit for Collaborative Urban Planning - Kleiner Grasbrook

The Cockpit for Collaborative Urban Planning (COUP) is a toolbox for the rapid simulation of urban scenarios. It is composed of multiple plug-in modules that allow simultaneous examination of complex parameters such as noise pollution, wind speed, solar radiation, and pedestrian movement. The two user interfaces, a physical table and a web application improve participatory decision-making by enabling visualization and co-creation of urban settings.

Sponsor: HafenCity Hamburg GmbH

Partners: Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) / MIT Media Lab

Project Duration: 2020 - 2022


MICADO: Migrant Integration Cockpits & Dashboards

MICADO is part of the EU research programme Horizon 2020, the consortium consisting of 15 partners is coordinated by the Digital City Science at the HCU Hamburg. By using new technologies of data analysis and data integration on the one hand and easily accessible audio-visual interfaces on the other, MICADO will provide a technical solution to facilitate the arrival and participation processes. These solutions will be developed and tested in co-creative processes in cooperation with the target groups of migrants and new citizens, public administrations, CSOs, and civil society. They aim at supporting communication with and between local authorities and facilitate access to relevant information.

Sponsor: Europäische Kommission Horizon 2020 

Partners: MICADO Consortium

Project Duration: 01.01.2019 – 30.06.2022 - ongoing

MICADO Website


TOSCA Toolkit for Open and Sustainable City Planning and Analysis

The Toolkit for Open and Sustainable City planning Analysis is a cooperation with the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in India, Ecuador, and Palestine. Further partners are the municipal administrations, local tech companies, and universities across the different locations.

Sponsor: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH / Partners: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, municipal administrations, local tech companies and universities

Project Duration: October 2019 – March 2021 - ongoing

The TOSCA Toolkit – Video Tutorial on Vimeo

github - The TOSCA Toolkit


SURE - Sustainable Development of Urban Regions

SURE is a BMBF-funded, HCU-coordinated facilitation and synthesis research project carried out in cooperation with THL Lübeck and TÜV Rheinland Consulting. SURE operates a larger BMBF programme (nearly 150 institutions), in which 10 individual research and development projects focus on sustainable urbanism in South-East and East Asia, by supporting the projects in their scientific work, cross-sectional research, and finding cross-project synergies and transfer potentials.

Project Duration: 01.09.2020 – 30.08.2025

Sponsor: The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is funding this project within the framework of the Strategy „Research for Sustainability" 

Partners: Technische Hochschule Lübeck, TÜV Rheinland Consulting

SURE Website



MEDIFLY Medizinischer Luftfrachtdienst mit unbemannten Luftfahrzeugen / Urban Air Mobility (UAM)

The joint Project Medifly Hamburg researches the possibility of unmanned aircraft for the transport of medical goods and how they can be safely integrated into existing urban air traffic. In addition to the legal framework and technical setup, the project is investigating the opinion and support of citizens, with the DCS researching, evaluating and conducting participatory formats.

Lead: GLVI Gesellschaft für Luftverkehrsinformatik

Project Duration: 2021-2022

Medifly Website


i-LUM Innovative Luftmobilität in Hamburg

The i-LUM joint project develops and evaluates the feasibility of innovative concepts and technologies for airborne urban mobility for the Hamburg Metropolitan Region in future scenarios (2040/2050). Within the project the DCS focuses on the planning, functioning, modeling and application scenarios of the ground-based infrastructure of the Vertiports.

Lead: Research Consortium of Hamburg Universities for Innovative Air Mobility in Hamburg

Coordinator: TU Hamburg, Prof. Gollnick

Project Duration: 2021-2023

i-lLUM Website



MOVE21 is an innovation project funded by the European Commission. It aims at transforming European cities and their surroundings into smart zero emissions nodes for mobility and logistics. The project helps participating cities achieve a 30% reduction of transport-related emissions by 2030 via the implementation of 15 transport-related innovations. The project coordinator is the City of Oslo – innovator city in C40 and European Green Capital in 2019. The cities involved are Oslo, Gothenburg, Hamburg, Munich, Rome and Bologna. HCU is participating to the project in several activities, and carrying out the lead of the work package focusing on “The Urban-Social Layer”. It is ensured a positive effect of the innovations deployed during the project at a social level. 

EU Horizon 2020 project

Lead: City of Oslo

Project Duration: 2021-2024

MOVE21 Website



LUV: Participatory Urban Strategy in Urban Air Mobility

In the context of urban air mobility, U-Space does not describe a specific area of airspace but rather is a framework for integrating drones into existing aviation, transportation, and environmental infrastructure. LUV is about the legal framework and acceptance strategy for Unmanned Airspace, particularly developing the concept of "U-Space" for access to lower airspace.

The official goal of the LUV project has been defined as “Solutions and recommendations for the national implementation of the U-Space Regulation”, but the part that DCS is working on is developing a strategy for integrating U-Space into the existing urban mobility setting, focusing on socio-political aspects. We used Hamburg as a case study to design a mechanism for stakeholders' participation and social acceptance of U-Space.

The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Digital and Transport (BMDV) and runs from 01.01.2022 to 31.03.2023.

Direct partner:

Hamburg Authority of Economy and Innovation (BWI)

Other partners:

Universität der Bundeswehr Hamburg (HSU)

Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH (DFS)

Droniq GmbH


Technische Universität Hamburg (TUH)

Project Duration: 01.01.2022 – 31.03.2023

LUV Website



Cooperation with the LIG Landesbetrieb Immobilienmanagement und Grundvermögen (II)

The LIG project's second phase is focused on analyzing texts using Natural Language Processing (NLP) technique and focuses on two different data categories: Hamburg Parlament Database and Newsletters (MOPO and ZEIT). It is built on an automatic procedure to download data, clean the data (remove numbers, punctuation, and stop words) and analyze keywords, retrieve location names and further convert them into coordinates and visualize them on the LIG Finder by means of point clouds. In addition, it is done VADER sentiment analysis to get polarization information and further run LDA and STM (Structure Topic Modeling) to cluster topics within articles. It is also refactored LIG Finder web interface to make it more user-friendly, building Geoparser module, personalized feature, and data classification modules.

Partner: Landesbetrieb Immobilienmanagement und Grundvermögen (LIG) /State Agency for Real Estate Development Hamburg

Project Duration: August 2021 – December 2022


ROMI Reallabor Offenes Modell für Interdisziplinäre Planung

In the project ROMI Reallabor Open Model for Interdisciplinary Planning, a DFG proposal is being developed to establish the scientific basis for a (digital) model that enables effective and integrative inter- and transdisciplinary collaboration in planning processes in the built environment.

Lead: HCU Digital City Science

In cooperation with HCU Profs. Ballestrem, Bögle, Breckner, Mondino, Schiewe, Wildner

Project Duration: 2021-2023


DAFNE Platform Data Fusion Generator for AI

DAFNE Platform Data Fusion Generator for AI is part of the BMBF program Generation of Synthetic Data for AI. Under the leadership of HAW Hamburg, a generator is being developed to produce large amounts of data needed for training AI algorithms in the Smart Cities use case that cannot be collected empirically. Digital City Science is leading the work package to develop and validate smart city use cases.

Lead: HAW Hamburg

Project duration: January 2021 - December 2023

DAFNE Website


Sharing City College

Joint PhD research into topics of participatory urban development

Coordinator: ahoi digital, Hamburg Universities´ department of Computer Science

Project Duration: 2021-2023

Project Description



Finalized Projects


Cooperation with the LIG Landesbetrieb Immobilienmanagement und Grundvermögen

Establishing experimental-explorative research and development projects, and creating new tools and methods for the visualization and analysis of urban data in the context of strategic land use and urban development.

Partner: Landesbetrieb Immobilienmanagement und Grundvermögen (LIG) /State Agency for Real Estate Development Hamburg

Project Duration: October 2019 – April 2021 


Cities4People Urban Living Labs for Mobility

Towards people-oriented transport and mobility

EU Horizon 2020 project

Coordinator: Copenhagen Business School

Project Duration: 2019-2021

cities4people Website


Gracio: Grasbrook CityScope

Using methods and tools for digital urban research, the DCS develops an interactive city model for the district of Grasbrook in Hamburg. The model will be used to support planning and decision-making via the visualization of complex spatial and social contexts. It will simulate development scenarios based on important urban planning qualities such as mobility and accessibility, energy consumption, and air pollution.

Sponsor: HafenCity Hamburg GmbH 

Project Duration: November 2018 - November 2020

Grasbrook Website