European Mobile Lab for Artistic Research (EMDL)

European Mobile Lab for Artistic Research (EMDL)

[CULTURE Programme 2007-13 – Cooperation], Projects with Third Countries (Strand 1.3.5), European Commission Education, Audiovisual& Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) (Jan 2014 – Sep 2015)

EMDL project website:    

This project aimed to facilitate interdisciplinary research on the subject of creating interactive immersive experiences and narratives in digital FullDome environments. More specifically, the main objective of the project was the collaborative creation of experimental, artistic content and immersive experiences for FullDomes, by adopting a design research methodology and by involving an interdisciplinary teams of experts (artists, scientists and academics from universities and cultural organisations in Montreal, Vienna, Plymouth, Dresden, Berlin and Athens).

In the course of this project, several workshops have been held in various European cities and Montreal, Canada with the purpose of bringing together a number of experienced content creators and scientists for experimenting with the process of creating interactive, immersive FullDome experiences, ultimately aiming to investigate and understand the communicative potential and characteristics of the FullDome as a medium.

The Spatial Media Research Group and the NTLab organized the first workshop in the series of events centred on dome content creation, and the members of the group actively participated in the creation process for the events that followed. Additionally, the Spatial Media Research Group team headed by D. Charitos, in collaboration with the research teams of the above organizations, conducted a series of studies on various aspects of the User Experience, as well as on the creative process and the characteristics of the FullDome as a medium. Finally the research team designed and implemented a multi-user virtual environment, as a performative, interactive installation, titled “Murmuration”, which was presented for 3 weeks in 2015, at the FullDome of the SAT center in Montreal and at the FullDomeUK festival in 2016 in England. 



In the context of the FP7 project SmartSantander, International collaboration with Mobics Ltd., (Oct.2012- Sept. 2013)

Project funded by the European Union through the 7th Framework Programme of the European Community for research and technological development.

The research team of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens worked on the design and evaluation of a mobile experiment in cooperation with Mobics (a start-up of the University of Athens) and the Transport and Transportation Infrastructure Department of the School of Civil Engineering, National Technical University of Athens (NTUA), for the promotion of smart mobility. The application was developed for the city of Santander in Spain and uses the wide network of sensors that exist there to promote an ecological concept of moving within the city and to enhance the use of mass transportation media. It provides the possibility of smart parking, detailed monitoring of the MMM routes and complete information on road conditions so that the citizens could organize their travels more efficiently.

LOcation-based Communication Urban NETwork (LOCUNET)

LOcation-based Communication Urban NETwork (LOCUNET)

[Regional Operational Programme for Attica 2000-2006] (May 2006 – May 2008)

LOCUNET was a research project that aimed to investigate the novel forms of communication that emerge as a result of the convergence of geographical positioning services, mobile communications, and graphical user interfaces. The result of this convergence is the appearance of locative media. More specifically, the result of this research programme was a theoretical model of the use of locative media and the forms of social interaction that may take place during locative media use, within the contemporary urban context. This model is expected to inform the design and development of locative media. For the purposes of evaluating the proposed model, a location-based multi-user communication system was designed and developed and used for supporting an activity comprising numerous mobile users in a central location in the city of Athens.

Virtual Museum

Virtual Museum

In collaboration with the Virtual Reality Group of the Department of Informatics & Telecommunications of the National & Kapodistrian University of Athens under the direction of Prof. C. Halatsis.

[Greek General Secretariat of Research and Technology, EPET]
(1999 – 2001) Analysis, design and development of an immersive and a desktop virtual reality system as well as an on-line database, for presenting the content of 10 museums, under the title “Virtual Museum” (duration 30 months)

The aim of the project was the design and development of an immersive virtual environment (VE) that would function as a context within which the digitized content of 10 existing museums would be exhibited. The visitors of these museums would be able to interactively navigate through this virtual museum system, view the exhibits and interact with them. The project included the processes of exhibit digitisation, architectural design and exhibit presentation of ten museums with exhibits that varied from archaeological to geological and from hygiene to forensic. Through this project, the potential of a VE system as a context for exhibiting the content of a museum in a remote location was investigated, since it may afford a larger number of people the possibility of experiencing museum collections without having to be physically present at the exhibition space.

Furthermore, a second version (web-based) of the digital museum environment was created, featuring fewer representational and navigation capabilities, in order to be accessible through the web. This virtual environment could be used for educational, research and cultural purposes. Additionally, an administrative platform was developed in order to allow system administrators and museum curators to add and remove exhibits from the virtual museum.

VR Autism

VR Autism

[Greek General Secretariat of Research and Technology, 1999-2000, 19 months]
Analysis, design and development of a desktop virtual reality system for educating autistic children in everyday tasks.

The aim of the project was the development of training and communication tools, functioning both in an autonomous manner and also available at the web, designed specifically for children with autistic syndrome, their trainers and training centers respectively. A group of specialized multimedia applications (employing video, video, speech and virtual reality) was designed and developed, aiming to meet the needs of people with autistic syndrome (that could be used with or without the help of trainers). In particular, a scenario describing the sequence of events and consequent requirements for an interactive application were described, in order to aid the organisation of autistic children’s behaviour in everyday activities. These requirements and scenario fed the design of a desktop virtual environment which afforded autistic children the interactive experience of navigating within a simulation of a home and participating in a realistic and embodied approximation of experiencing these everyday activities. Also, a web-based communication environment was designed and developed, in order to allow communication between the stakeholders.

European Mobile Lab for interactive media Artists” (e-MobiLArt)

European Mobile Lab for interactive media Artists” (e-MobiLArt)

[CULTURE Programme 2007-13, European Commission Education, Audiovisual & Culture Executive Agency (EACEA)] (Nov 2007 – Nov 2009)

e-MobilArt promoted interdisciplinary collaboration by experienced european artists toward the production of interactive art. For the purposes of this project, the UoA NTLab collaborated with the University of Lapland (Finland) and the University of Applied Arts (Vienna, Austria), the State Museum of Contemporary Art in
Thessaloniki (Greece), the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice (Poland), as well as with two hardware manufacturers and software developers (Cycling74, Making Things) and the acclaimed electronic art academic journal LEONARDO/OLATS. Each higher education institution involved in the project organised a workshop. The aim of these three (Greece, Finland, Austria) workshops was twofold: workshop participants were trained in the use of relevant hardware and software by scientists and qualified experts; in addition, cooperation among artists was supported at all stages of the creative process. The works produced by the artists were exhibited by the art galleries involved in the project.

City Is a Hybrid Interface

City Is a Hybrid Interface

Hybri-City: City Is a Hybrid Interface

[CULTURE Programme 2007-13, European Commission Education, Audiovisual & Culture Executive Agency (EACEA)] (Nov 2011 – Nov 2013)

The aim of the project was to develop a creative and technologically informed look at several european cities (Athens, Prague, Istanbul, and Marseille), in order to create innovative forms of interactive representations for the processes that shape these cities. In the context of this project, the Spatial Media Research Group and the NTLab (in collaboration with the University Research Institute of Applied Communication) organized an academic conference (“Hybrid City 2”) and a series of workshops (May 2013) with several noted researchers and artists as invited/keynote speakers and/or workshop organizers. Invited keynote speakers included Steve Benford (UK), Eric Kluitenberg (Netherlands), Julian Oliver (Germany), Stephen Kovats (Germany), Dietmar Offenhuber (USA), and Nikolaos Avouris (Greece). The Hybrid City Conference 2013, in Athens, Greece, consisted of three days of paper presentations, discussions, workshops and satellite events, under the theme “Subtle rEvolutions”.

The web site of the conference is at:

The Hybrid City 2013 events also include an oline exhibition ( and a series of workshops, relevant to the theme.


Theme – Subtle rEvolutions

ICTs, whether mobile, wireless or embedded in persistent architectural forms, facilitate the collection and dissemination of data, infusing the physical expression of the city with digital layers of content, contributing thus to the emergence of new hybridized spatial logics and novel forms of social interaction. These systems and the hybrid spatial experience they afford, encourage encounters among users; both embodied and mediated, and influence community dynamics, giving rise to networks around common interests and collectives of affect. Sometimes, such groups, irrespective of how ephemeral, unstable and dispersed they may be, negotiate a new kind of engagement with the urban environment and civic life, suggesting thus an organizational paradigm that manages to surpass traditional vertical hierarchies of space and consequently of power and control. Such configurations among communities, locations, contexts and intentions were manifested intensely in the interlinking of protest events around the world since 2011, the Arab Spring uprisings, the Occupy movement and anti-austerity demonstrations in Southern Europe, but they also gradually permeate everyday life in the contemporary metropolis. As sharing and collaborative tactics migrate from online culture to the urban realm and ICTs become increasingly open and personalized, rich opportunities for new forms of participation in civic life arise. Citizens are enabled to access information about the city but also to become involved in the production, collection and distribution of data related to urban matters. The Hybrid City Conference considered a further investigation of such processes of crucial importance, so as to gain a deeper understanding of the effect they have on the urban experience and to explore their contribution in shaping the future cities. In this respect, Hybrid City invited papers both of a theoretical and practical approach that present concepts, case studies, projects, works of art and best practices that promote the discussion on the theme. Emphasizing the inherently interdisciplinary nature of technologically mediated urban activity, we welcomed proposals which critically examine the following topics:

• Open cities, open urban data.

• Environmental sensing and the Internet of things.

• Urban data visualization.

• Environmental perception, cognition, immersion and presence in the context of hybrid urban spaces.

• Citizen science and peer production of knowledge.

• Psychosocial perspectives into the impact of locative and pervasive media use.

• Placemaking, place attachment and place identity in the hybrid city.

• Cartography of hybrid spaces.

• Mobile commons and wireless practices.

• Public spaces and mediated presence.

• Gamifying the urban space: playful engagement and game-like citizenship.

• Hybrid spaces of conflict: forms of power and counterpower in the networked city.

• Tactical media practices in the urban context.

• From open data to data commons.

• Open source models of policy and governance.

• Emerging currencies and values.

• Issues of data ownership and copyrights in hybrid urban contexts.

Global Gateway

Global Gateway

[Civil Society Dialogue, TR0803.03/100] (2010 – 2012)

This action was undertaken in the context of the Global Gateway project and of the EU-funded program “Civil Society Dialogue – Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture” in which NTLAB participated. The Global Gateway project was closely connected with the fact that Istanbul was proclaimed the 2010 European Capital of Culture. Therefore, besides promoting the EU-Turkey Civil Society Dialogue as such, one of the project´s main objectives was to foster the Turkish capital´s role as a cultural catalyst within emerging creative domains such as experimentation with mew media interfaces and techniques as well as art/science.

In this project the NTLAB (in collaboration with the University Research Institute of Applied Communication), under the direction of D. Charitos, organized a series of workshops and an academic symposium, titled Hybrid City, on the design and use of location-based activities in an urban environment.

The primary goal of the symposium was to highlight the potential transformative shift of the urban condition, as a result of recent developments in information and communication technologies (ICTs). Urban life is in a state of flux. The widespread adoption of technologies that facilitate social activity among prospective users influences community dynamics and introduces the emergence of novel forms of social interaction. The city is augmented through multidimensional processes. Digital information is embedded in persistent architectural forms (the built environment), while at the same time, representations of the urban setting are displayed on the screens of mobile communication devices.

Emphasizing the inherently interdisciplinary nature of technologically mediated urban activity, the symposium aimed at exploring the emergent character of the city, addressing resurfacing questions on the nature of the urban experience, as well as outlining strategies and tools for future social interaction and participation.

Invited keynote speakers at the symposium were Professors. Richard Coyne and Martin Rieser (UK).


The “Codes of disobedience & dysfunctionality” workshop:

Technology reconnecting the personal with the political in a contemporary metropolis

In the context of the Hybrid City symposium and the Global Gateway events that took place in Athens, a workshop titled “Codes of Disobedience & Dysfunctionality” was organised from the 28th until the 4th of March 2011. The workshop was directed by the British artist Martin Rieser, in collaboration with an interdisciplinary team of artists, researchers and postgraduate students, from the Faculty of Communication and Media Studies of the University of Athens, the School of Architecture of the NT University of Athens and the Athens School of Fine Arts.

The aim of the workshop is to study the elements of the urban environment of Athens and to form a new trail as a structure of narrative, thus enriching the city with interactive content that reflects its contemporary transformations. Inspired by the posters and the graffitis encountered in the city, and taking advantage of the possibilities given by mobile communication technologies (GPS, QR codes etc) and the internet, the workshop aims to connect the urban surroundings of Athens to opinions and statements of its inhabitants regarding the challenges imposed by current social, political, and financial circumstances; anger, disobedience, opposition, dysfunctionality. The features of the contemporary metropolis in the midst of a period of crisis will be the main focus of the project, posing at the same time questions about the role and mediation of technology in urban everyday life. Can the new possibilities offered by technology really capture the needs and the atmosphere of a city like Athens? Can patterns and characteristics of urban life be identified when studying the use of these communication systems?

The work that was created after the completion of the workshop was presented at the premises National Museum of Contemporary Art, on the internet and in the center of the city (at Skoufa – Navarinou – Tzavela streets). From the 5th until the 25th of March the visitors of the museum and inhabitants of Athens were invited to follow the project’s trail and discover the different parts of the project’s narration. Special QR codes were placed in selected locations of the city and by scanning them with a mobile phone, access to the audiovisual material created during the workshop was provided to the audience. Combining elements of installation art, urban intervention, gaming and performance, “Codes of Disobedience & Dysfunctionality” reflects Rieser’s long term practice on art and technology.

The work can still be experienced online at:


Workshop and Symposium Coordinator: Asst. Prof. Dimitris Charitos
Symposium Organisers: Iouliani Theona, Haris Rizopoulos
Workshop Organiser and Curatorial Advisor: Daphne Dragona
Workshop Conductor: Professor Martin Rieser
Workshop Assistants: Phill Sparks, Empedia locative walk implementation            
                                  Jackie Calderwood, video development and user evaluations
Exhibition Organised by: National Museum of Contemporary Art (EMST)

Hackable City

Hackable City

The Hackable City was a research project, initiated in late 2012 by One Architecture and The Mobile City and which explored the potential for new modes of collaborative citymaking, in a network society. It aimed at investigating the impact but also the challenges of the emergence of “smart’ technologies and of new instruments for an open, democratic process of collective production of urban spaces. The key research question was about how citizens could work with planning specialists, local governments and other stakeholders and use technology tools to develop cooperative urban planning, management and social organization processes and to contribute to a sustainable city woven with a strong social fabric. Inspiration and program manager was Professor Martijn de Waal from the University of Applied Sciences in Amsterdam, in collaboration with the University of Amsterdam, Utrecht University and other Dutch institutions. The program examined relevant spatial examples from the cities of Athens, Senzen and Sao Paolo and towards this goal, our research group (Spatial Media Research Group, Faculty of Communications and Media Studies, National and KapodistrianUnivesity of Athens) was a local partner that collaborated with the main research team for conducting the research in Athens and for organising a symposium and workshop in Athens, along with all relevant research activities.



Available downloads:

The Hackable CIty @ Athens.pdf

The Hackable City @ Athens Schedule.pdf