What is Digital Infrastructure?
The definition of digital infrastructure is varied and complex, but in the context of the SAFE project we meant any or all of the following:
- A wiki - a website on which users collaboratively modify content and structure directly from the web browser
- An interactive map of local services (including production, processing, distribution, retail, catering, consumption, waste disposal and health promotion)
- Cloud services for on-demand capacity to link up the above services, including a comprehensive database of projects, skills, services, produce and requirements
- Internet connected sensors or devices (otherwise known as the 'Internet of Things' or IoT) for sensing real-time conditions (e.g. organic waste receptacle full, harvest ready for collection, certain ingredients required, delivery/collection van passing nearby etc.)
- Linked smartphone apps
A commons is the cultural and natural resources accessible to all members of a society, so we are use the expression 'digital commons' to simply mean a collection of the above digital services that are accessible to any member of society with access to a computer or smartphone.
Note that while 'Self-organising Action for Food Equity' (SAFE) could not fund more than the basic underpinnings required (fully fledged apps can be very expensive to produce), open-source technology means users can modify, adapt and extend any platform so that it can evolve as required.
We also collected a selection of case studies that inspired us in developing the SAFE project.