Sunday, March 29, 2009

Empowering Communities: Learning from Community Informatics Practice. No. 572.

Empowering communities: learning from community informatics practice. 4-6 November 2009 Monash University Prato Centre, Italy

The idea of 'empowerment' has a number of special connotations in the Community Informatics space. Community Informatics is an approach to empowering communities with information and communication technologies. There is a widespread expectation that Community Informatics will enhance democracy, develop social capital, build communities, develop economies and empower individuals and groups, and result in many different forms of social change. Community Informatics, in bringing together communities and technologies, works across at least three dimensions, though there may be others which are relevant.

The purpose of the Community Informatics Research Network (CIRN)is to promote and represent community informatics and community networking research internationally. Community Informatics lies at two cross-roads: bringing together people concerned with electronically enabling communities: local, virtual and communities of practice; and structuring collaborations between researchers and practitioners, including industry, in these three domainsand to support a community based approach to the implementation of ICT systems and services including Internet access and responses to the Digital Divide.

Community Informatics lies at the junction of two cross-roads and brings together people concerned with electronically enabling local (and virtual) communities; and structuring collaborations between researchers, practitioners (including industry) and policy makers to support community ICT implementation and effective use.

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