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Latest Research for Social Housing Landlords

Ethical Internet of Things (IoT) for Social Housing

This report was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council Impact Acceleration Account – Accelerating Business Collaboration.

The Internet of Things (IoT), the network of connected devices linked together by the internet, promises numerous benefits for social landlords and their residents. From proactive repairs and improving living environments, to better safety and reducing energy bills, these technologies will vastly enhance the data we have on our social homes to enable us to provide better services at cheaper cost.

These benefits, however, can only be realised if there is broad acceptance of IoT in social homes. The research conducted for this paper makes a substantive contribution to IoT’s acceptability, bringing together the views of over 500 social residents and 50 other industry stakeholders to understand a broad range of perspectives and their antecedents.

A key influence in enabling participation identified in this research and wider, is the need to cultivate trust; trust in governance and trust in technology. Trust in these domains has eroded in recent years, and this will need to be rebuilt.

In this report, we define the key concerns of both landlords and residents and find that they align closely with global-level work on principles for Artificial Intelligence ethics.

The report contains a series of recommendations to guide action to ensure that IoT is both embraced by residents and delivers maximum efficiencies for landlords.

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