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Title:Citizen professional toolkits: empowering communities through mass amateurization
Author(s):Wolske, Martin; Johnson, Eric; Adams, Paul
Community Informatics Conference 2009
Community Informatics Conference
Martin Wolske
Eric Johnson
Paul Adams
University of Illinois
Digital storytelling
Community Technology Centers
Information and Communications Technology
Communities of Practice
Palestinian refugee camps
Ultra-mobile PC
Citizen Professional Toolkit
Graduate School of Library and Information Science
Community Networking Initiative
Youth Community Informatics
Mobile Media Toolkit
Teen Tech Team
Flip Video Ultra
Flip Video
Abstract:Community Technology Centers (CTCs) and Telecentres provide critical access to Information and Communications Technology (ICT) resources where inequities exist. Additionally, a range of examples exist in which such centers are used by those who may have access elsewhere, but especially value the social interactions found at these community centers. Indeed, these facilities sometimes become meeting places for citizen professionals to participate in Communities of Practice working towards common goals. But while numerous paid professionals find laptops and mobiles the platform of choice for their daily work lives, many CTCs are still built using an impersonal closed room model which is restricted to mass implementation of non-flexible technology directed at no more than basic bridging of the digital divide. Emerging technologies such as low-cost ultra mobile personal computers and smartphones, cloud computing, geographic/neighborhood information systems, and personal webs are revolutionizing how professionals work. High functioning communities are finding ways to take advantage of the mass amateurization brought about by these emerging technologies to engage community members in community development goals, using the diversity of input to enhance the overall quality of outcome. The challenge remains how to empower more communities through access to, and training with, citizen professional ICT. This paper will describe our early experiences using customizable citizen professional toolkits to empower members from economically disadvantaged communities to work as citizen journalists and citizen planners.
Issue Date:2010-01
Publisher:Centre for Community Networking Research, Coulfield School of IT, Monash University
Citation Info:Martin Wolske, Eric Johnson, and Paul Adams. "Citizen professional toolkits: empowering communities through mass amateurization." CIRN 2009: Empowering communities: learning from community informatics practice. Monash University Prato Centre, Italy:, 4-6 November 2009.
Genre:Conference Paper / Presentation
Publication Status:published or submitted for publication
Peer Reviewed:is peer reviewed
Date Available in IDEALS:2010-05-24

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