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Urban Thermometer

The 10th annual GPPN Conference, hosted by the Sciences Po School of Public Affairs, featured students' solution oriented ideas and prototypes to address public policy challenges identified by the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To participate, each GPPN member school carefully selected up to five student teams to present their projects and compete for the GPPN prize. The result: 32 teams from around the world met in Paris to showcase their ideas on how to solve some of the most pressing global challenges of today.


The Urban Thermometer was selected as one of the six GPPN finalists at the annual conference.

The Urban Thermometer is a student project coming out of the Sciences Po Policy Innovation Lab. The project envisions a hypothetical partnership between public actors such as the Mairie de Paris and the OECD, and an online platform such as Facebook, with the aim of collecting a large amount of data on subjective life experiences in order to exhibit spatial inequalities in wellbeing in large cities. Subjective wellbeing indicators are becoming increasingly important in measuring societal progress. Yet as of today, no large-scale data collection efforts exist to measure the wellbeing of metropolitan inhabitants on a granular level. This data is essential to understanding increasing levels of disparities of wellbeing between different areas within large cities, and the factors that drive these differences. In addition, such data can be used to evaluate policy measures aimed at reducing such inequalities, such as the administrative reforms in the Grand Paris area in Paris.

Meet the team

Vincent Siegerink is a graduating student of the School of Public Affairs in Paris. His interests in Public Policy arose early in his life while doing a two-year high school program at the United World College of Southern Africa in Swaziland. After, he studied Economics at Macalester College in the US, motivated to understand better the drivers of global inequalities. There, he grew an affinity with the measurement of subjective wellbeing as a tool to assess social progress an understand inequalities. At the same time, he was inspired by the potential of Internet start-ups in shaping our society, participating in Hackathons and visiting Silicon Valley to meet with leaders in the field of innovation. While at Sciences Po, Vincent has been working part time for the OECD in the Statistics Directorate, supporting their teams in collecting and analyzing data related to trust and wellbeing. The Urban Thermometer project combines two of Vincent’s longstanding interests: those of using measures of subjective wellbeing for the understanding of social progress, and the potential of capitalizing on internet platforms for the benefit of the social good.

Interested in learning more about the GPPN programs and degrees? Find out here!


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