Water Stakeholders Testing Immersive Media Experiences in Italy


ULTIMATE project launches first IMX based on co-creation and our playbook for  play by design in Italy

Today we have achieved another major milestone in the European project ULTIMATE. The first of three Immersive Media Experience (IMX) installations has officially been opened in Italy. The place to experience this play by design installation is the public librabry “Bottini dell’Olio” in the city centre of Livorno.

The project partners Consorzio Aretusa, the water working group of the Polytechnic University of Marche and the developers from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, Norway, have organised the opening event locally. The project partners from NTNU have designed and implemented the installation based on co-creation with local stakeholders. These kind of installations are part of our stakeholder activities and are established close to our case studies, where we want to engage with as many stakeholders as possible. In the ULTIMATE project there will be in total three such design installations: in Italy, Denmark and the Netherlands.

What is Immersive Media?

Immersive media is digital media that immerses the user in an interactive and realistic environment to provide a more complete and engaging experience. Immersive media comes in different forms: Virtual reality (VR), Augmented reality (AR), Mixed Reality (MR), and are all commonly referred to as  eXtended Reality (XR). With immersive media, you can deliver cutting-edge content and interactive experiences. XR experiences today a´can be found in many dicerse fields and industries, for example Marketing, Retail, Healthcare, Education, Art & Entertainment, and Automotive.

In the specific IMX installation in the library in Livorno, we have implemented a table top XR game and an AR infographics section with a map of the coastal area close to the case study in cities of Cecina and Rosignano. “The goal of this installation is to showcase what the case study is doing and how it impacts the regios through both a gaming element and inforgraphics. The IMX is designed to engage citizens in a fun way through play. The play will increase engagement and increase dialog on the actual problems ULTIMATE are solving,” says Andrew Perkis, the project lead at NTNU. “The visitors can place markers on different areas on the map highlighting water activites and will experience images and videos in an interactive and engaging way. The visitors can also use their own mobile devices to get more information.

The organiser Consorzio Aretusa see a real benefit in having this installation established locally where everybody interested can easily visit and experience it for themselves. “We received a lot of feedback so far. Our stakeholders are really interested how they can experience in a play way what options there are in the water context for the coastal area here in Italy”, states Camillo Palermo, case study leader from Consorzio Aretusa.

In the ULTIMATE project, a team of European researchers and engineers from 11 countries are developing solutions to turn wastewater into a resource. This initiative is co-financed by the European Commission and started in June 2020. The aim is to create economic value and increase sustainability by valorising resources within the water cycle.

Further, on 27 January from 9:00 am there will be on the second day of the installation event a Water Oriented Living Lab, where the Horizint 2020 European projects ULTIMATE Water EU and AquaSPICE will be presented, focusing on the Rosignano case study. The workshop is organised by the partner Water Europe. The meeting will focus on the development of innovative solutions, including digitalisation and their integration in combination with new business models, governance and innovative policies based on the true “Value of Water”.

Coming up next are the IMX installations in Denmark and the Netherlands in Spring 2024.