Civic Capacities

IT for Change

Organization's slogan: 
An India-based NGO working on information society theory and practice from the standpoint of equity, social justice and gender equality.
Civic Organization Disclaimer: 
Possible disclaimer: This information has been entered by a person who isn't associated with the organization. It may be incomplete or contain mistakes. If you are associated with this organization and would like to maintain this information, please get a Public Sphere Project account and ask us to transfer ownership of this information to you.

IT for Change works in the following areas.

Development for IS

An equitable information society can flourish only through inclusive and informed debate, involving not merely actors from the technology arena but all actors in the development sphere, especially from the South. Current information society and 'ICTs for development' or ICTD approaches predominantly represent Northern realities and perspectives, tending to favour market-fundamentalist thinking and valorising technology per se. IT for Change attempts to de-construct the dominant approach and concepts in relation to ICTs and development and articulate alternatives, based on information provided by field work.

Internet governance

The manner in which the Internet is being shaped today is an important determinant of the directions of social change. It is no longer a simple technical platform about which scientists and technical experts are best placed to take all the important decisions. The question then becomes important: who decides the direction in which the Internet is evolving? A common response is that the Internet is a dynamic platform which responds to user needs. User determination of the trajectory of the Internet's evolution is today largely a myth, though some remarkable oases of alternative practices amongst committed techies or perhaps even involving some ordinary 'power users' do exist. To the extent the user has a role, it is in his capacity as a consumer, which capacity itself is very differentially distributed between the affluent and the marginalsied groups. Largely, it is the corporatist and statist powers that play an overwhelming driving role in shaping the Internet. Other than in very authoritarian countries, it is the global corporate power, often with strong support from governments, especially those of the North, that is the major determinant of the directions that the Internet is taking. The Internet being a major force in our shifting social configurations, it should not be difficult to see what this means for our future, especially for people and communities that are already marginalised.

 
Gender

IT for Change (ITfC) focuses on theory-building and policy research, adopting a pro-South feminist approach. ITfC seeks to build a theoretical framework of gender and information society that problematises women’s citizenship in the changing social order. ITfC’s research and advocacy have critiqued market-based approaches in policy making – globally and nationally – and have pushed for new frameworks based on citizenship and rights-based approaches.IT for Change's work in the area of governance looks at how new technology paradigms open up novel opportunities for deepening democracy while also presenting challenges to many conceptions of democratic governance. We engage with policies in the area of e-governance, public information systems, decentralisation and community based governance structures. We also engage with demonstration projects to explore bottom-up, participatory designs of governance systems that centre on divergent and dynamic priorities of local communities and engage their ongoing active participation.

Governance

IT for Change's work in the area of governance looks at how new technology paradigms open up novel opportunities for deepening democracy while also presenting challenges to many conceptions of democratic governance. We engage with policies in the area of e-governance, public information systems, decentralisation and community based governance structures. We also engage with demonstration projects to explore bottom-up, participatory designs of governance systems that centre on divergent and dynamic priorities of local communities and engage their ongoing active participation.

Education

IT for Change (ITfC) believes that ICTs can help to shape participatory and collaborative processes of learning as well as teacher professional development in education, and is concerned by the attempts to use ICT programs in schools to justify, without any basis, the privatisation of both curriculum and pedagogy in the Indian public education system.

Public Software

Public software is all software that is essential for participating in the digital society and thus needs to be provided to everyone as an universal right and entitlement. It includes operating system, text / image / audio / video editors, email, web browser, search engine etc. Public software needs to be free software, providing the freedom to use, study, modify and share, to ensure universal access as well as participation in its creation and modification.

Organizational engagement: 
Active
Organization's headquarters: 
Bangalore, India
Organization's geographic focus: 
India-based
Contact person: 
Parminder Jeet Singh
Contact information: 
ITfC(at)ITforChange(dot)net

Invitation to Join the Collective Intelligence for the Common Good Community / Network

Invitation to join the Collective Intelligence for the Common Good Community / Network

We would like to invite you to participate in a new research and action community network that focuses on Collective Intelligence for the Common Good. We hope that our collaborative efforts will help address our shared challenges.

Project Goals: 
Develop collaborative tools, policies, etc. — and links between them — that have a positive influence in addressing local and global challenges.

Journal of Community Informatics

Organization's slogan: 
The Journal of Community Informatics provides an opportunity for Community Informatics researchers and others to share their work with the larger community. Through the Journal's application of a rigorous peer review process, knowledge and awareness concerning the community use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is being brought to a wider professional audience.
Civic Organization Disclaimer: 
Possible disclaimer: This information has been entered by a person who isn't associated with the organization. It may be incomplete or contain mistakes. If you are associated with this organization and would like to maintain this information, please get a Public Sphere Project account and ask us to transfer ownership of this information to you.
Organizational engagement: 
Active
Organization's headquarters: 
Vancouver, BC, Canada
Organization's geographic focus: 
worldwide

http://

Contact person: 
Michael Gurstein

Civic Data Challenge

Organization's slogan: 
The Civic Data Challenge turns the raw data of “civic health" into beautiful, useful applications and visualizations, enabling communities to be better understood and made to thrive.

The Civic Data Challenge turns the raw data of “civic health" into beautiful, useful applications and visualizations, enabling communities to be better understood and made to thrive.

Civic health data has been collected for years, and we now have an opportunity to make this trove of community insight more valuable and accessible to decision makers and the public. The Civic Data Challenge will bring new eyes, new minds, new findings, and new skill sets to the field of civic health.

Designers, data scientists, researchers, and app developers are especially encouraged to join the challenge.

Challenge participants will be provided civic health data, as well as data on health, safety, education, and the economy.  Participants will analyze the data, identify connections and correlations, and create visual representations and applications to showcase their findings. These may include infographics, apps, animations, videos, or other innovations.

Judges will evaluate entries based on the quality of the analysis and design, the compelling nature of the finding, and the utility of the product. Winners will be chosen in the categories of health, public safety, education, economy, and “Best in Show.” Challenge Judges will also choose a “Wild Card” winner.

The Challenge opened on April 3 and entries must be received by July 29. Winners will be announced at the 67thAnnual National Conference on Citizenship on September 14 in Philadelphia.

The Challenge is presented by NCoC (the National Conference on Citizenship) in partnership with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. NCoC and Knight Foundation hope the Challenge will uncover new findings on why community engagement and attachment are critical to building thriving communities.

For more information, please visit www.CivicDataChallenge.org.

Organizational engagement: 
Active

http://

Street Music

Douglas Schuler
The Public Sphere Project
Celebration of Public Music
Version: 
1
Problem: 

(note that the Problem Statement is still in work.....)

Music, including singing as well as the playing of instruments, has been a key element of the human condition for millennia. Unfortunately -- at least in the United States -- music has become more of a commodity, to be enjoyed passively and non-interactively. 

The rise of mass media is probably at least one of the culprits. 

Context: 

(note that the Context Statement is still in work.....)

Discussion: 

(note that the Discussion is still in work.....)

Street Music blurs the distinction between producer and consumer of music as well as the distinction between formal and informal venues for music production and consumption. 

Although street bands, including many of those found at Honk Fests, can be found at protests (including the Infernal Noise Machine (image below) that supported the demonstrations against the World Trade Organization in Seattle in 1999), their actions are often political to a large degree by virtue of their publicness in an era of electronic or other formalized or mediated forms of music consumption. 

See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-MLvzLlou4 for Environmental Encroachment's performance of Hashia.

 

Thanks to a member of the Bucharest Drinking Team and to Bob of Environmental Encroachment for their thoughts on the current breed of "new street bands" including their history and motivation. 

Solution: 

 

Solution in work:

something about establishing and supporting street music. More and more and more of it....

Categories: 
orientation
Categories: 
engagement
Categories: 
social
Categories: 
products
Themes: 
Social Critique
Themes: 
Community Action
Themes: 
Social Movement
Themes: 
Media Critique
Information about introductory graphic: 
Photo of Church, a marching band from Santa Rosa, California. Shot by Douglas Schuler, June 1, 2012. Georgetown (Seattle, WA)
Information about summary graphic: 

Infernal Noise Machine, Seattle Washington

The Long Walk for Justice by George Lakey

"What do Native Americans, Costa Ricans, Thai villagers, Hispanic students in U.S. colleges, Indian independence activists and Maasai women have in common? They’ve all organized long marches as part of campaigns for justice. Their campaigns’ very different choices about how to use the tactic raises strategic questions for us today. In some campaigns the long march was used primarily to heighten awareness, while in others it was to gain new allies. Sometimes it was used to launch other kinds of direct action.

url: 
http://www.nationofchange.org/long-walk-justice-1333295330
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