Global Urban Research Unit

Staff Profile

Dr Sebastian Weise

Lecturer in Digital Civics


Sebastian is CEO at PlaceChangers Ltd. and a lecturer in Digital Civics (part-time) at Newcastle's School for Architecture, Planning, and Landscape (APL). He earned a PhD in digital innovation from Lancaster University focusing on improvement of consultation processes in local government. He is knowledgeable of bottom-up participation in urban development enabled by locative media. He works with residents, urban planners, city administration professionals, property developers, and ‘techies’ of different domains of computing. 

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Sebastian's research focuses on introducing a spatial dimensions to participation in urban planning. He is interested in the methods and techniques to design participatory and collaborative processes in planning that are supported by a spatial component, for example, through non-digital (such as mapping workshops) and digital means (such as aided by geospatial technologies). Practices where his research will be applicable are activities involved in informing and detailing neighbourhood plans and more broadly any plan of action that has a link to physical space. 


Sebastian is teaching the modules TCP2031 Digital Civics; a module that introduces 2nd year undergraduates to user-centred design. This module underlies a strong problem-based approach. Students work with real stakeholders from local government and local charities on prototypes that can facilitate collaborative exchanges on issues of public concern.

Sebastian also teaches TCP2023 Sustainable Development, a module that encourages students to revisit the concept of sustainability in a range of themes relevant to urban planning and construction. Those include transport, energy, land use.


  • Hemment D, Weise S, Conteh F. Evaluation of human-centred design in CityVerve —Learnings for large-scale demonstrators. Manchester: FutureEverything, 2018.
  • Weise S, Coulton P, Chiasson M. Designing in between local government and the public - using institutional analysis in interventions on civic infrastructures. Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) 2017, 26(4-6), 927-958.
  • Kirkham R, Ebassa R, Montague K, Morrissey K, Vlachokyriakos V, Weise S, Olivier P. WheelieMap: An Exploratory System for Qualitative Reports of Inaccessibility in the Built Environment. In: MobileHCI 2017 19th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services. 2017, Vienna: ACM.
  • Büscher Monika, Perng Sung-Yueh, Weise Sebastian. Periphere Kooperation am Beispiel der Anschläge in Norwegen 2011 / Peripheral Cooperation in Crises: Norway 22/7/11. i-com 2014, 13(1). In Preparation.
  • Salinas L, Weise S, Pollastri S. Transforming the planning process — challenges for the service designer. In: ServDes.: Service Design & Innovation Conference. 2014, Lancaster, UK.
  • Weise Sebastian, Hardy John, Agarwal Pragya, Coulton Paul, Friday Adrian, Chiasson Mike. Democratizing ubiquitous computing: a right for locality. Proceeding UbiComp '12 Proceedings of the 2012 ACM Conference on Ubiquitous Computing 2012.
  • Weise Sebastian, Hardy John, Agarwal Pragya, Coulton Paul, Friday Adrian, Chiasson Mike. The case of urban development: Fostering off-line interactions through local ubicomp systems. Proceedings of Ubicomp'12 2012.