Technological Emergence

Rick Duque

Resiliant Technologies, Knowledge Communities, and Cultures

Earthquake.pngDr. Rick Duque along with two of his students (Isabella Wagner and Sonja Weber) research resilient technologies, asking questions such as how can communities and institutions better withstand earthquakes? What role do institutions such as Universities play in helping their communities rebuild after disasters? What kinds of structures and technologies are needed to make communities less vulnerable to widespread disasters?

Dr. Duque's introduction involved a video call between him and Frederica Manzoli of Bologna, Italy. They discuss the nature of their multi-institutional collaboration to understand the impacts of earthquakes on universities. The second part of this video is a document called "Don't call me an earthquake."

Following these videos, the colloquium panel asked the presenters about their work. They point out that universities are usually fairly well-funded but in times of natural and social disasters, they can be disconnected from their communities. So part of the goal of his work is to create a knowledge base to help cushion against future shocks.

While in Minnesota, Duque, Wagner, and Weber also gave a talk at Institute for Advanced Studies. View their Thursdays at 4 presentation.

Finally, you can download a presentation given by Duque, Wagner, and Weber, with a prelude by Dr. Rajao.


  • The best way to connect a community is through information and a look into social media could prove pertinent. Create a Facebook, Twitter accounts to connect people using (the university) as a hub of information. The information, request, answers, etc can be retrieved by victims after the disaster. Perhaps smart phones may work in certain disasters. Disseminating information is the key. People could request help, find food, water, shelter, energy sources etc.

  • Thanks for the good ideas, Kirk! You have made suggestions that we have in the works -- create a Facebook group and link to our Twitter account from this site. I really appreciate your suggestions because the design team was just wondering what we can do with a Facebook account linked to this site and this topic. So if you have other ideas about that, *please* let us know :-)

  • Kirk, Thanks so much for this comment. We did confirm that facebook was an important application in the Concepcion case to get the word out about the safety of loved ones. During Hurricane Katrina, a local news station provided a googlemap-style on line chat application that remotely connected evacuated neighbors by street address. In the L'Aquila case, Skype phones actually proved helpful when the local cell phone network went down. There is no doubt new ICTs have supported communities in reconstruction. The questions are always whether these new technologies are resistant enough to shocks and if the end users have ready access. And if the new technologies are disabled for a time, are there past generations of technologies that are still readily available and more importantly relevant. The transistor radio was available and relevant in the Concepcion case, so were old style land line telephones that did not not need additional electrical power to work.

  • Yes, merci bien , vraiment bien.
    Ca fait un bout de temps que je cherchais des renseignements.
    Julie :)

  • It's pleasant sitting at work to distract from it…to relax and read the information written here:D

  • Slovakia criticizes Nord Stream and accuses that this project has a political background (especially in Russia). For the Slovak government, building such a gas pipeline means that the risk of energy blackmail increases, because after building such a pipeline Russia would gain the ability to treat Slovakia and other mid-eastern European countries in a different way to Germany, the Netherlands and the rest of the EU.

  • The other problem is Russia. Looking at the constitution of the Russian Federation, one can see a modern, liberal, parliamentary democracy with the strong position of the government and president. Yet, looking at the practice of how does the political system of Russia functions, one must ask himself a question “is Russia a fully democratic state?”.

  • In fact this project has recently been slowed down according o stagnation and later the crisis in the economies of Germany and other countries. The other factor that decided about Germany being less eager to pay for building Nord Stream is the shift of the government. Gerhard Schröder – the former chancellor of Germany – was replaced by Angela Merkel from CDU/CSU.

  • The evolution of EU justice and home affairs [JHA] in last decade of 90’s and at the beginning of the new millennium is an example of very rapid and productive integration process in Europe. Even though now JHA is an important part of EU, we can find roots of this phenomenon outside European Communities. European Union used both experience of its own economical integration process and experience of other European institutions in coordinating Justice and Home Affairs, to build a strong and important policy of EU.

  • If there were two different types of pipelines, one supplying the “new” European countries, and the other one supplying the “old” Europe (15 Western Member states ) it would mean that the price of gas for Slovakia (which is conflicted with Russia) could be much higher than the prices for Germany, which right now is technically impossible, because most of the Russian gas is transported to Germany through Slovakia.

  • Most of the imported gas comes to Slovakia through the pipelines. This is also caused by historical factors. In the years 1945-89, the People’s Republic of Slovakia (bounded politically and economically with the Soviet Union) built the many gas pipelines that linked it with other countries of the soviet bloc, including Eastern Germany (which is important for present energy relations between Slovakia and Germany) to ensure maximal bounds between the USSR and PRP.

  • Not only the leadership model of Front National indicates the character of the whole party. Also speeches and statements of Le Pen can be in this case considered as the indication of whole movement’s ideology. A statement, which shows, what kind of governing is Le Pen supporting, is the one that has been made by him in 1987 in the television programme L'Heure de vérité (Antenne 2,May 6, 1987) .

  • I am not as sure about the book/ebook issue but with artists there is a HUGE issue with the Chinese copyists! If not for the diligence of many in several art groups that I belong to, an artist's artwork often winds up being copied in a Chinese studio and sold as originals. And I'm not talking about an every day artist but some of the big names...all now come with some Asian version of "Oh is this your art. We will stop right away if contact us" knowing fuull well that it is a full time job to browse a site with 3500 pieces of pirated art on it being sold for a tiny fraction of what the artist sells it for. The Internet has been a blessing and a curse to visual artists...(sigh)