Coordinated Safety Management Across Smart Communities
Lead PI:
Jose Fortes

This planning grant enables research at the University of Florida (UF) and the City of Gainesville (City) to guide UF and City communities on how best to integrate and coordinate safety-relevant data, decision-making, and protective interventions. A joint UF-City strategic plan, among other objectives, anticipates the deployment of smart sensing and adaptable infrastructure for data-informed coordinated management of community safety. UF and the City are deploying smart-lighting infrastructure on multiple streets across UF and neighboring streets which also provides the scaffolding needed to deploy sensors of several kinds. Multiple scenarios can be envisioned for safety enhancement, including talk-down speakers for warnings or instructions, gunshot/active shooter and duress sounds detection, remote image/video capture and light and mobility management. It is anticipated that human sensors (e.g. people using smartphones) will provide information via social networking platforms, home-security systems and safety apps. Data generated from social networks can complement data from infrastructure sensors with early warnings and help implement and evaluate interventions to address potential risk areas and actual safety events.

Several multidisciplinary questions are being considered in the context of the project. How can data from UF and City locations be streamed, correlated, integrated, analyzed and visualized jointly by separate safety management entities? How can safety incidents be prevented and/or detected in real time from observed data patterns? How can data from infrastructure sensors and human sensors be integrated? How can humans (managers and citizens) access, visualize and interact with data analytics systems used to extract and present safety information? How are safety, security and privacy issues collectively addressed? How can distributed computing systems be architected to support computing, storage and network needs of such workflows across a smart city infrastructure, including devices owned by users in the community? The anticipated outcomes of this project include (1) well formulated research problems that integrate socio-technical perspectives in the context of UF-City communities, (2) identification of academic and community partnerships with the necessary knowledge to address the problems and (3) preliminary work and testbed designs to be included in a future SCC-IRG proposal to address the problems.

Jose Fortes
José A.B. Fortes is the AT&T Eminent Scholar and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Florida where he founded and is the Director of the Advanced Computing and Information Systems Laboratory. Among other current projects, he is leading the development of the cyberinfrastructure of the NSF-funded iDigBio project, is the principal investigator and Steering Committee Chair of the NSF-funded CENTRA initiative and is a principal or co-principal investigator of several other NSF projects (including HuMaIN and PRAGMA). He received the B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering (Licenciatura em Engenharia Electrotécnica) from the Universidade de Angola in 1978, the M.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the Colorado State University, Fort Collins in 1981 and the Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles in 1984. From 1984 until 2001 he was on the faculty of the School of Electrical Engineering of Purdue University at West Lafayette, Indiana. In 2001 he joined both the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Department of Computer and Information Science and Engineering of the University of Florida as Professor and BellSouth Eminent Scholar. From July 1989 through July 1990 he served at the National Science Foundation as director of the Microelectronics Systems Architecture program. From June 1993 till January 1994 he was a Visiting Professor at the Computer Architecture Department of the Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. His research interests are in the areas of distributed computing, autonomic computing, computer architecture, parallel processing and fault-tolerant computing. He has authored or coauthored over 250 technical papers and has lead the development and deployment of Cloud and Grid-computing software used in several cyberinfrastructures for e-Science and digital government. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, Office of Naval Research, AT&T Foundation, IBM, General Electric, Intel, Northrop-Grumman, Army Research Office, NASA, and the Semiconductor Research Corporation. José Fortes is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) professional society and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He was named the University of Florida 2019-2020 Teacher/Scholar of the Year (the University of Florida’s most prestigious and oldest faculty award) and a member of the UF Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars. He received the 2021 South Eastern Conference (SEC) Faculty Achievement Award for UF and the 2021 ECE Excellence Award for Faculty Research at UF: He was a Distinguished Visitor of the IEEE Computer Society from 1991 till 1995. José Fortes has served as a member of the Editorial Boards of the IEEE Transactions on Services Computing, IEEE Transactions on Cloud Computing, IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems, the ACM Journal on Emerging Technologies in Computing Systems, International Journal on Parallel Programming, Cluster Computing: The Journal of Networks, Software Tools and Applications, the Journal of VLSI Signal Processing, and the Journal of Parallel and Distributed Computing.
Performance Period: 07/01/2020 - 06/30/2022
Institution: University of Florida
Award Number: 1951816