Purdue Innovation Partners Institute launches digital engagement initiative for Discovery Park District

WEST LAFAYETTE – Purdue Research Foundation’s Innovation Partners Institute (IPI) announced Thursday (Sept. 9) a data governance initiative designed to engage community members and instill trust in the technology built into the Discovery Park District (DPD) community.

David Broecker

“Community buy-in and trust in the safe, secure, ethical and transparent adoption of technology are critical to the advancement of new products, services, and digital innovation,” said David Broecker, chief innovation and collaboration officer at the Purdue Research Foundation. “This project will help us create thoughtful governance of our digital environment to build trust in the technology we are putting in place, which is critical to the effective adoption and productive use of that technology and future use cases and projects.”

The Convergence Center for Innovation and Collaboration in the Discovery Park District. Purdue Research Foundation’s Innovation Partners Institute has launched a governance initiative to engage community members and instill trust in the technology built into the Discovery Park District. (Purdue Research Foundation photo)

According to a recent US Ignite report, many smart cities fail when the adoption of smart city applications conflicts with the privacy and security of residents. US Ignite suggests a framework that focuses on engagement, equity, governance, cybersecurity, and privacy. DPD will use these ideas to understand how other communities and corporations deal with these components and will develop its own methodology for how to govern its own digital environment. Starting with robust stakeholder engagement to understand the interests and concerns from across the community, this initiative will lead to the creation of a policy framework and governance process for the DPD connected community.

“The governance process will provide leadership and oversight for the deployment of smart technology across the district aimed at improving the quality of life for the residents, tenants, and visitors to the district, including the collection and use of data,” Broecker said. “It will ensure that research that takes place in the district will respect the privacy and rights of those who live, work and play there.”

DPD will engage several members of its recently announced Technology Leadership Advisory Board in discussions around this important initiative. The investment these companies and others are making at DPD will give rise to community use cases that will drive new products and services, including the safe and secure acquisition of data.

Troy Hege

“Working with these companies provides DPD with an important opportunity to get their perspective while also shaping their policies to ensure secure, ethical, transparent data use that will support technology adoption and scalability beyond DPD,” said Troy Hege, Purdue Research Foundation vice president of innovation and technology and program manager of the Innovation Partners Institute.

IPI will publish its lessons learned from the real-life implementation and management of the data governance model to help other smart communities build their governance structures.

Jay and Robyn Stead of Auckland, New Zealand, and the Stead Family Foundation have underwritten the data governance initiative. Jay Stead is a successful business leader and innovator and graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Management degree from the Krannert School of Management in 1986.

Sources: Troy Hege, tdhege@prf.org, David Broecker, dabroecker@prf.org