Week 12 : Turning to the Civic

This week students all had a different paper to read:

Alexandra – Asad and Le Dantec – Illegitimate Civic Participation

Peter – Boehner and DiSalvo – Data, Design and Civics

Sami – Civellaro et al. – Re-Making Places

Colin – SiSalve, Jenkins and Lodato – Designing Speculative Civics

Vasileios – Golsteinjn – Sens-Us

Hattie – Gaver et al. – The Datacatcher

Agata – Le Dantec – Participation and Publics

Irina – Harding et al. – HCI, Civic Engagement & Trust

Bobbie – Johnson et al. Reflections on Deploying Distributed Consultation

Jack – Le Dantec et al. – Planning with Crowdsourced Data

Adam – McMillan et al. – Data and the City

Andrew – Taylor et al. – Leaving the Wild

Mohaan – Voida, Yao and Korn – (Infra)structures of Volunteering

Then we worked in groups to start thinking about the relationship between topics in HCI and Digital Civics through three questions:

“How should HCI researchers work with future (local) government?”

Peter, Vasileios, Irina, Jack & Adam

“How should HCI researchers work with future community organisations, charities and not for profits?”

Bobbie, Agata, Andrew, Mohaan

“How should HCI researchers engage with future citizens around civic issues?”

Alexandra, Sami, Hattie, Colin

We also did some ‘free association’ writing around the topic for the assignment “the relationship between HCI and Digital Civics”. This can be a great way of getting around writer’s ‘block’ – rapidly writing words on the page, without worrying too much about coherence or structure.

I encouraged you not to consider HCI and Digital Civics to be ‘at war’ too much – after all, the agenda of Digital Civics has in many ways come out of research in HCI. Likewise, although participatory design (next week’s session) has the most obvious links with Digital Civics, be wary of offering it as the solution to everything! The notion of ‘tech Jesus’ in the above I thought was very fitting – and I would be cautious of putting anything on a pedestal.

Next week’s session is ‘Participatory Design’ with Simon Bowen. There are a couple of things that he’d like you to do in advance of the session:

  1. Read your group’s set paper – see the list of groups and papers below. Matt tells me that the papers are all now on OneDrive – link.
  2. Find one paper that is a good example of “participation”, in particular “getting people involved in design processes”. You could search for terms like “participatory design”, “co-design” and “co-creation”. You might also want to find something that relates to your particular interests in relation to Digital Civics (but this is optional). Make sure the paper is from one of the publication venues listed in the resources page. (The Participatory Design Conference proceedings and the Co-Design Journal are obvious places, but participation has become a common aspect of much HCI design research in recent years)


Hattie, Andrew, Jack, Bobbie

Bjögvinsson et al. Design Things and Design Thinking: Contemporary Participatory Design Challenges


Alex, Peter, Sami

Bossen et al. Evaluation in Participatory Design


Colin, Vasileios, Agata

Light and Akama Structuring future social relations


Irina, Adam, Mohaan

Empathy, Participatory Design and Dementia

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *