Thinking about using the social web to do democratic things…..
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The Collaborative Manifesto

I was really lucky to be invited to participate in a 2 day workshop in Stockholm the week before last organised and hosted by SALAR, with help from Jeremy Millard and brilliant facilitation from Martin Sande. I have worked with SALAR on and off over the last five years and one of the many things which are impressive about them is there openness to external ideas. This event really came out of this as they gathered a...

Civic architecture in cyberspace

My thesis is (currently but persistently) titled “Civic Architecture in Cyberspace” and this post is an attempt to explain what I mean by this. Be warned that this also a draft for a section in the final document so may be a little slow…. When William Mitchell described his ‘City of Bits‘ in 1996 he recreated the physical city with retail, educational civic and commercial elements. He was...

Where are the politicians?

Here’s the thing. I have tremendous respect and appreciation for people who choose to stand in local elections. Local politics is a fairly thankless task however with a few exceptions we see exceptional public service from our local politicians. At the same time I find it screamingly frustrating as to how slow the adoption of new approaches and behaviours can be within this group. This is an action research...

Lex Informatica

When I say Facebook is evil its firstly a cheap shot aimed at getting an immediate laugh out of the audience – I have to say that it usually works. I think it hits a chord with people as all good jokes should. While evil is perhaps an overstatement its true that my values and those of Facebook are not aligned – they are making decisions which effect me which I don’t agree with – over which I have no...

Identity and Citizenship – who are you anyway?

Identity matters – it’s a vital piece of context in conversation whether it’s established by digital footprint or physical presence.  One aspect of moving conversations from the informal to the formal sphere is the reconciliation of your online persona with your legal citizenship. People, like places, have a digital wrapper which extends their identity from beyond their physical presence in to the...

Networked Public’s and Civic Spaces…or why I don’t want to end up making important decisions while avoiding adverts for viagra

I always feel like a special kind of social media arse when I talk about online spaces rather than websites but I nonetheless believe it is a meaningful distinction (or I really am that social media arse – you judge). I wrote this piece on the website / webspace terminology dilemma and I would still stand by it. In particular I believe the evolution to the language of space rather than talking about websites...

So…how do we make decisions?

Before getting started here – large thanks to Anthony Zacharzewski from DemSoc for putting me right on a number of things – all mistakes still existing are clearly my own…. One of the things I like most about working through the blog is that a piece can start off as one thing and become something quite different. I thought this post was going to be something fairly straightforward documenting decision...

CityCamp London – really bloody marvellous

So…CityCamp London…..where to start?? Firstly with a huge thank you and congratulations to Dominic Campbell and I suspect, more quietly, Carrie Bishop and the rest of the team who ran an amazing event with enthusiasm, generosity and intelligence – and I didn’t even manage to make the last day. FutureGov, I am not a fan girl type but I am now officially a fan. Its easy to get very jaundiced...

PepNet summit and some general thoughts

Bit of a change of pace as this is a note from an event I was at last week – normal academic service will resume soon (am reading The Myth of Digital Democracy so that you don’t have to….). I  wrote this while at Hamburg Airport waiting for a delayed flight home and thought I’d try and use the time constructively and write up some thoughts from the Pep-net summit that I was over here for....

The Network Society and your local neighbourhood

The ability to reach the other side of the world without leaving your sofa brings changes beyond saving the cost of a stamp. The ability to share data and content without doing so in person or setting it in the aspic of print gives it a life of its own which starts to interweave with the relationships that the internet allows us to build. As I have discussed previously the internet changes the dynamics of place...

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