Research group at imec & Vrije Universiteit Brussel


New publications by SMIT researchers

Below you can find an overview of publications of SMIT from September 2020 till January 2021. The publications are divided into the two major programmes of SMIT: Media & Society and Data & Society. Enjoy the read!


Media & Society

Digital platform power

Tom Evens and Karen Donders edited a special issue in the Journal of Digital Media and Policy on ‘Regulating digital platform power.’

In this special issue, the article ‘Platform policies in the European Union: Competition and public interest in media markets.’ of Tom Evens, Karen Donders and Adelaida Afilipoaie examines which platform policies the European Commission has developed over the last couple of years and whether its policies are taking into account the differences in platform power.


Television markets

‘The Resilience of Small Television Markets to COVID-19: the Case of Lockdown.’ by Tim Raats for the Baltic Screen Media Review presents a case study of Lockdown, an anthology series developed by two production companies under strict COVID restrictions in Flanders, centred on a prison visiting space.


Public service media

This article of Alessando D’Arma, Tim Raats and Jeanette Steemers analyses how public service media organisations (key purveyors of societal goals in broadcasting) are responding to the fast-growing popularity of transnational online video streaming services.


Data & Society

Open data

Nils Walraves, Mathias Van Compernolle and Pieter Colpaert authored a chapter on different aspects of open data for public authorities and organisations in the publication ‘Wie zoekt die vindt’, published by Politeia. The article is especially interesting for anyone interested in how to classify and use open data within an organization (in Dutch).

Nils Walravens, Pieter Ballon, Mathias Van Compernolle and Koen Borghys published a chapter on ‘Data Ownership and Open Data: The Potential for Policy Making’ in the book ‘The Data Shake. Opportunities and Obstacles for Urban Policy Making.’ that deals with a number of challenges in the field op open data and a checklist that cities can employ to begin tackling them, as well as a set of model clausules to be used in the procurement of new technologies.


Business models

The article ‘Do you trust me? Value and governance in data sharing in business models.’ of  Ruben D’Hauwers and Nils Walravens focusses on different data sharing business model factors. [accepted, not yet published – hyperlink to article will be added later]


Electricity markets

The article ‘Sharing Beyond Peer-to-peer Trading: Collaborative (Open) Business Models as a Pathway to Smart Circular Economy in Electricity Markets.’ of Mehdi Montakhabi, Shenja van der Graaf, Pieter Ballon and Mustafa A. Mustafa performs an analysis on emergent peer-to-peer (p2p) electricity trading markets utilizing the resource-based theory based on the sharing economy concept to identify possible opportunities for assets/data sharing amongst existing and emerging market player.

‘The path to peer-to-peer electricity trading’ by Mehdi Montakhabi, Fairouz Zobiri, Shenja van der Graaf, Geert Deconinck, Domenico Orlando,  Simon Vanhove, Raf Callaerts, Pieter Ballon and Mustafa A. Mustafa performs a value network analaysis on the electricity market. The article is published in 2020 6th IEEE International Energy Conference.



The article ‘Practical AI Transparency: Revealing Datafication and Algorithmic Identities.’ by Ana Pop Stefanija and Jo Pierson, published in the Journal of Digital Social Research outlines methodological steps to manoeuvre around the inherent algorithmic opacity and black box-ness as well as with the limitations of API-based research and the data access gaps imposed by platforms’ gate-keeping practices.

The book ‘Artificiële intelligentie en lokale besturen. Van artificiële naar reële meerwaarde.’ of Nathalie Dumarey, Rob Heyman, Frederic Heymans, Cora van Leeuwen and Annelien Smets hightlights the possibilities and challenges of AI for local authorities. The book is published by politeia uitgeverij (in Dutch).



Pablo G. Esteban, Elahe Bagheri, Shirley A. Elprama, Charlotte I.C. Jewell, Hoang-Long Cao, Albert De Beir, An Jacobs and Bram Vanderborght published the article ‘Should I be introvert or extrovert? A Pairwise Robot Comparison Assessing the Perception of Personality-based Social Robot Behaviors.’ in the International Journal of Social Robotics on personality traits and the similarity- and complemntarity-attraction effects in HRI (Human-Robot Interaction) and the demographic variables which might affect them.

The article ‘Passive Shoulder Exoskeletons: More Effective in the Lab than in the Field?’ of Sander De Bock, Jo Ghillebert, Renee Govaerts, Shirley A. Elprama, Uros Marusic, Ben Serrien, An Jacobs,  ́Joost Geeroms, Romain Meeusen and Kevin De Pauw evaluates the effectiveness of two passive shoulder exoskeletons and explores the transfer of laboratory-based results to the field. The article is publised in EEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering. 


Data literacy

Tom Seymoens, Leo Van Audenhove, Wendy Van den Broeck and Ilse Mariën describe SMIT’s digital literacy DataBuzz project in detail in the latest issue of the Journal of Media Literacy Education. The DataBuzz is a high-tech, mobile educational lab, which is housed in a 13-meter electric bus. Its specific goal is to increase the data literacy of different segments of society in the Brussels region through inclusive and participatory games and workshops. This paper explores how to carry out practical data literacy initiatives geared to the general public.


(Photo by Jonas Jacobsson on Unsplash)