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Boasting a much longer title than my last conference, this week I’m at a conference in Delft sharing the design process of an action-sharing app that I’m working on with Partizaning and a group based at The New School. From the conference website:

The popularity of Facebook, Twitter and other social media has spurred a demand for new forms of self-organising governance by citizens and forms of participatory planning. However, real two-way communication between residents and policymakers through social media is still scarce. Standard public participation instruments (e.g. town hall meetings) are outdated, unappealing, disconnected from residents’ needs and difficult to fit into daily activity schemes. Hence, resident involvement in neighbourhood affairs and collective action are often below the potential given residents’ willingness to contribute.

Whereas many recognise the potential of social media to involve new groups (e.g. youths) and offer new ways of communication and participation, there is little knowledge on the utility, mobilising potential and effectiveness of social media and mobile technologies in this context. How can social media supplement other participation forms? What about take up rates of social media-based platforms? To what extent do virtual platforms really affect decision-making and residents’ approach towards local everyday liveability issues? What are preconditions and restrictions for effectively using ICT and social media in self-organisation? And to what extent do new practices require adjustments of theories of active citizenship, social capital, participatory planning and collective action?

The aim is to identify, present and discuss scientific research into and local experiences with the mobilising potential of ICT, social media and mobile technologies and ICT in the context of neighbourhood governance, self-organising citizens and participatory planning.

I’m on a panel titled “Online Platforms and Mapping” that includes the following presentations:

Christo de Klerk
“MikroAct: Designing to Mobilize Collective Urban Actions”

Paolo Patelli
“Refracted CounterMapping on the move, from within Cairo”

Roman Sebastyanski
“The New Life for the Gdansk Shipyard”

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