I am delighted to be involved this year with Interactivos ’12 at the Science Gallery in Dublin in association with MediaLab Prado. The project is part of the three-year StudioLab initiative which aims to bring together scientists, artists and designers in pilot projects with appropriate support and development processes. I will take up a role, in July, as one of four mentors for the duration of the projects.

The theme in 2012 could not be more exciting. “Hack the City: Current and Future Needs” will put the canvas of our urban landscape under the knife over the course of the workshop and hacklab. For millennia cities have been a mishmash of planning, governance, co-operation and emergent behaviour, but also a breeding ground for hacks, guerrilla interventions and improvised products and services.

Dublin is no different. It’s very history, culture, architecture and infrastructure lends it a character totally unique in the world and provides a wealth of opportunity for invention and intervention during the course of our work.

As a native of Dublin, I’m excited to see the concepts submitted through the open call, and to watch as they are developed in a city that is alive with creative energy but also going through a period of immense change.

I look forward to identifying needs and opportunities in the city and refining concepts through prototyping and testing with Dubliner’s themselves. As a user-centred designer I believe the true meaning of the word “city” is as a collective noun for “citizens” – what is a city without it’s people? I want to put Dubliner’s at the heart of the work, and to surprise and delight in the process.

Interactivos ’12 runs in Dublin, Ireland from July 11th to 26th. The open call for project submissions can be found here and the deadline is May 20th, 2012. A second open call, for collaborators in the selected projects will run from June 1st to 5th 2012.