TIMBRE Workshop on "Expert System" information network web-tool

Timbre invites experts and representatives of institutions & companies interested or involved in the re-development of brownfields and former industrial, military or other sites to a workshop to be held in Brno, the Czech Republic, on 29. November 2013:

TIMBRE Information Network on innovative and widely applicable strategies, technologies and solutions

TIMBRE - Stakeholder Workshop

Especially, we invite representatives from investigation & remediation consultants and public authorities as well as academia in the Czech Republic interested in assessing the state-of-the-art technologies and approaches for brownfield regeneration.

Participants in the event will have the opportunity to directly assess the TIMBRE web-based tool "Expert System" as Information Network on innovative and widely applicable strategies, technologies and solutions, and to gather a live experience related to the use of this online information webtool – also giving feedback to the tool developers.

The TIMBRE Expert System aims at supporting stakeholders in sharing, accessing and selecting the most suitable information for the different phases of the brownfield management process, taking into account their specific requirements and the evaluations provided by the users.

Key dates, venue, costs and registration

The workshop will be in Czech language with English translation for TIMBRE partners.

Participation in the workshop is free of charge and includes information materials and coffee breaks.
Organizers do not cover the cost of travel and accommodation.

The event will take place on 29th November 2013

at the Masarykova Univerzita, Ekonomicko-správní fakulta, Lipová 41a, 602 00 Brno-Pisárky, Czech Republic (49°11'36.821"N, 16°34'38.806"E) - next to one of the TIMBRE project's case study model sites in Brno.

Download here the announcement/ registration form for the event in English or in Czech.

Please register with us by latest 15th November 2013 (see informatoin on the flyer).

Background to the workshop

The transformation from industrial to information and service societies has produced many brownfields all over the world. Areas previously used for mining, military or industrial purposes are frequently beset by contamination - impeding the development of surrounding communities. A persistence of this situation is due to a lack of standardised legal procedures/frameworks to support sustainable brownfield regeneration, or to the non-visibility of many best practice proven innovative approaches, methodologies, tools and technologies for brownfield regeneration, as well as due to the insufficiently addressed necessity of clearly identify stakeholders’ needs.

The project TIMBRE – Tailored Improvement of Brownfield Regeneration in Europe – aims at supporting stakeholders and key-actors in over-coming barriers to brownfield regeneration by providing customised problem- and target-oriented technologies and management tools for brownfields’ re-use planning and remediation.

As a key result, TIMBRE will provide a web-based Information Network “Expert System” to be a collector and a provider of available information related to the management of brownfields.

Specific functionalities for searching the information collected within the Expert System according to end-users specific needs have been implemented. The Network will support the evaluation and ranking of the collected information providing end-users with the most suitable information/tools according to their specific needs.

Join this event to get involved in the final development of this tool.

Testing activity performed by stakeholders during Berlin and Brno workshops

Summary of the stakeholder workshops in Brno and Berlin

The first event, the Berlin workshop, was held on the 27th of November 2013 and addressed experts and representatives of brownfield owners, regulators and further stakeholders interested or involved in the re-development of brownfields and former industrial sites. The workshop was in German language with English translation for TIMBRE partners. The second event, the Brno workshop, was held instead on the 29th of November 2013, addressed many categories of stakeholders (e.g., site owners and neighbours, local authorities, consultants,
scientific community and researchers) and was in Czech with English translation for TIMBRE partners.
Participants in both of the events had the opportunity to directly access the online tool individually, with their own credentials, and to gather a live experience related to the use of the information stored into the tool.
The main aims of the workshops were to collect feedbacks, suggestions and inputs to improve the tool, to identify different uses of the system according to end users’ needs (e.g., identification of the most common “search aims”) and to collect evaluations of the consulted information/documents. At the end of the workshops two questionnaires have been submitted to participants in order to collect feedbacks on the Information System itself and on the workshop’ contents, material, instructors and organisation.
Workshops’ participants identified some points of improvement related to the Information System. Taken into consideration the feasibility of the requests, actions have been taken and the tool has been improved accordingly.
Furthermore, as reported above, one of the main aims of the organised workshops was to identify the most common “search aims” to be included in a list within the tool. A list of search aims, including more than 150 items, has been collected during the two events.
Another issue raised during the workshops was about the name of the tool. The initial name of the tool was “Expert System as information platform for innovative and widely applicable strategies, technologies and solutions”, but it has been pointed out that this expression was too vague, not providing specific information about the features of the tool to possible users.
In order to overcome this problem, suggestions about possible alternative names have been asked to project partners, stakeholders and also to the TIMBRE International Advisory Board and, after internal discussion, it has been agreed to adopt the expression: “TIMBRE Information System for Brownfield regeneration”.
Summing up, it can be said that the involvement of the stakeholders has been of crucial importance for a better tailoring of the tool. The workshops’ participants provided indeed useful feedbacks for the improvement of some functionalities of the tool. Moreover, their involvement and commitment in evaluating the accessed information allowed to increase the “knowledge base” of the Information System.