C&T 2023: Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies

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  • Conference Paper
    Updating Natureculture Practices in Abruzzo: Towards the Prototyping of New Ecological Relationtionships between Sheperds, Farmers, Animals and Plants
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Boffi, Laura
    This paper is about an ethnographic journey into traditional agropastoral practices in the region of central Italy called Abruzzo, which brought the researcher close to human and non humans inhabitants and their natureculture entanglements, and informed a participatory design process on how to nurture socio-ecological relationships in order to support local biodiversity. Two ethnographic accounts relating to the new rural generation are unfolded, showing how traditional agropastoral practices have been taken up by young farmers and shepherds, as well as the challenges and opportunities that arise. The paper suggests two different ideas of updating natureculture practices: one leading to the creation of a co-existence relationship among the shepherd, the sheeps and the newts, all revolving around the drinking trough as a common; one leading to the (re)activation of people care for wild plants as potential crop wild relatives (CWR), a source of genetic resources for food and agriculture.
  • Conference Paper
    Designing the City: Challenges and Opportunities in Digital Public Service Design
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Boztepe, Suzan; Glöss, Mareike; Grönvall, Erik; Christiansson, Jörn; Linde, Per
    Municipalities around the world have become increasingly reliant upon digital technologies in their everyday operations. In pursuit of a faster, cheaper, and more efficient local government, service platforms and applications that mediate citizen-government interactions, smart city infrastructures, and automated decision-making systems have proliferated. More recently, digital technologies are also sought to address socially complex issues and foster civic engagement. These ambitions, motivated by both rational and democratic perspectives, however, confront many challenges such as designing with wide heterogeneous groups, navigating organizational structures, and dealing with the political agendas and conflicting perspectives of multiple stakeholders. Designing digital technologies for municipalities, therefore, requires an ability to address the technical, social, institutional, and political challenges critically, practically, and holistically. This hybrid workshop aims to bring together researchers and practitioners to (1) explore how this could be achieved and (2) map the existing and emerging challenges and opportunities for designing public digital services and technologies.
  • Conference Paper
    Supporting Innovation in a Context of Uncertainty: The Role of Design and Technology
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Armouch, Sarah; Visram, Shelina; Vlachokyriakos, Vasilis
    Within the context of Lebanon, certain youth-led and grassroots organizations are fertile spaces of social innovation. Through a participatory action research (PAR) approach and using participatory design (PD) methods, we explore the possibility of creating the conditions for technology-supported social innovation within such a contested context. We present the case of our long-term engagement with “4-all-causes,” a youth-led group that aims to challenge existing hierarchical organizational structures and redefine health service provision in the country. Our observations and participatory workshops led to insights concerning the application of PD in such contested and uncertain spaces. In addition, we discuss the roles that we, as design researchers and digital technologists, can play in creating conditions for social transformation and a new health narrative through the infrastructuring of social innovation.
  • Conference Paper
    Two-Sided Cultural Niches: Topic Overlap, Geospatial Correlation, and Local Group Activities on Event-Based Social Networks
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Hsu, Julia Hsin-Ping; Shin, Heejoo; Park, Noseong; Lee, Myeong
    As event-based social networks (EBSNs) such as Meetup.com and Facebook Events gain popularity in managing local events (e.g., farmers’ markets and social gatherings), two-sided cultural niches are created as event organizers and participants benefit from the platform while affecting each other. Among various factors, niche overlap, an ecological feature, has been studied as a key factor that shapes the success of online communities. While such ecological factors may also shape EBSN-based local groups’ success, the context of EBSNs raises unique challenges in understanding the roles of cultural niches due to the informal nature of the local groups and their geographical embeddedness. In this paper, we examine the effects of Meetup groups’ topic overlap and geospatial correlation on the activity levels of both organizers and participants, using one-year Meetup data for 500 cities in the United States. We find that (1) a group’s topic overlap with other groups on EBSN is associated with its activity levels, and (2) local groups’ geospatial correlation may moderate the effects of topic overlap for EBSN users, but inconsistently. The results provide a baseline understanding of EBSN-based groups from an ecological perspective.
  • Conference Paper
    Connecting Through Objects∗: Sharing Memories Through Participatory Stop-Motion Animation with Personal Objects of the Armenian Diaspora
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Eivazy, Nairy; P. L. Peeters, Jan; Claes, Sandy
    Diaspora communities, such as the Armenian, who lost their tangible connection to their homeland, tend to carry objects with them that are representative of their roots and create a sense of belonging. Stop-motion animation can bring objects into life through sequential photography. As the objects are manipulated by the animator, directly by touching, or indirectly by accidental physical contact, stop-motion is directly linked to the sense of touch and materiality. Through this, we believe the stop-motion animation process can evoke rich memories. In this paper, we report on an exploratory stop-motion workshop, which was organised in collaboration with five Armenian community members with no prior animation making experience. We learned how the participatory stop-motion animation approach evoked memories through its inherent connection to storytelling and tangible manipulation, and how the creative group process supports a sense of belonging that transcends self-representation and bridges different cultures.
  • Conference Paper
    User Experience for Non-Expert Audiences in Data Exploration
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Tylosky, Natasha; Knutas, Antti; Qureshi, Majad; Wolff, Annika
    Data Exploration remains an untapped area of research, and as of yet few guidelines exist for how to design a data exploration tool. In this paper we conduct a qualitative study of a data exploration tool that has been created using a series of principles for designing data exploration systems for non-expert audiences. In the course of this study, we both evaluate the tool, dubbed the Data Explorer, and refine the design principles that it was based on.
  • Conference Paper
    Beyond Human Sensors: More-than-Human Citizen Sensing in Biodiversity Urban Living Labs
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Slingerland, Geertje; Overdiek, Anja
    Recent interest in biodiversity to combat climate crises led governments to use data platforms and sensing tools to monitor, conserve and increase city biodiversity. Given that most of these tools are designed for expert users and most city space is privately owned, there is a growing need for urban living labs (ULLs) approaches that combine community co-design with HCI for biodiversity. This paper develops and explores the BULL (Biodiversity Urban Living Lab) approach, building on the existing City Commons HCI framework, using research-through-design and action research methods. A BULL approach should not only engage citizens but also lead to opportunities for individual and collective action towards biodiversity as perceived common. Next to this, ecological and technological entities as non-human actors need to be involved in community-based co-creation in BULLs. The BULL approach provides a process and specific tools for multi-stakeholder groups, including more-than-human ones, to experiment with opportunities for more biodiversity in a local community, resulting in individual and collective action.
  • Conference Paper
    Co-Creation Practices and Technologies for Open Urban Planning
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Tellioglu, Hilda; Mikusch, Gerfried; Kirchberger, Christoph; Keseru, Imre; T. Geurs, Karst; Buettner, Benjamin; Vettori, Brigitte
    With this workshop, we aim to provide a forum for participants populated by researchers, urban planners, co-creation facilitators, and representatives of municipalities to share their experiences with co-creation tools and methods in urban planning. We focus on reflecting on key issues based on CSCW (Computer Supported Cooperative Work) and PD (Participatory Design) concepts and approaches regarding engagement, participation, and consensus-making in technology-supported co-creation processes. By concentrating on spatial and urban planning practices, we will connect above mentioned actors to discuss different participation and co-creation processes among disciplines. After briefly introducing state-of-the-art co-creation techniques, Design Thinking approaches connected with supporting technologies will be examined and evaluated in group discussions by informing the presented practices with theories and concepts from CSCW and PD research.
  • Conference Paper
    IT for Good. How Technology Adoption and Technological Artefacts Can Support a Local Community: Two Case Studies
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Cruciani, Veronica; D'Andrea, Vincenzo
    In this paper we discuss how ecology of artefacts and their design are connected with motivations and values within a community. We consider artefacts both as social constructs and as tools and means by which communities can pursue their goals. The complex intertwining of artefacts creates ecologies made of interactions between communities, humans and technologies. Our focus is on grassroots communities oriented towards sustainability-related goals, where we explore how the nexus between motivations and community goals is embodied (or not) by the technologies chosen and domesticated by communities. Thus, motivational aspects are all but immaterial or fortuitous. Indeed, they proved to be tangible, context-dependent and they work as infrastructures whose shape continuously change according to the necessities of the community members.
  • Conference Paper
    1st Workshop on Exploring Disruptive Technologies from the Local Community Perspective
    (Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Communities and Technologies, 2023) Musto, Jiri; Heikkinen, Kari; Martin, Nicholas; Auvray, Bertille; Bakhaev, Stepan
    The use of disruptive technologies by the private and public sectors is increasing. With the release of new systems, many have wondered how artificial intelligence may change the world for better or worse. For this, European Commission has created instructions on how artificial intelligence and blockchain should and should not be used in the public sector. On the other hand, private companies are free to utilise these technologies. Many challenges and barriers must be overcome to have the public adopt these technologies. This one-day workshop will explore disruptive technologies from a local community perspective. We will use a case of artificial intelligence and blockchain-enabled electronic ID (eID) for the initial framing and exploration of this problem and compare the differences when the software solution is deployed locally, nationally or internationally. These differences and issues can be looked at, for example, through the lens of trust, usability, security, and privacy.