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Situating community through creative technologies and practice

Lookup NU author(s): Joelle Bitton, Andreia Cavaco, Lalya Gaye, Benjamin Jones, Dr Graeme Mearns, Ranald Richardson, Professor Atau Tanaka


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This interdisciplinary scoping study critically discusses the relationships between communities and their creative uses of digital technologies: the nature of this use, its impact on the formation and sustenance of communities, and the potential this holds for social change. We start by providing brief working definitions of creativity, digital technologies and community as understood in this study, while drawing attention to the ways that technologies have helped shape communities and societies since the nineteenth century. Further, we discuss the interconnection between design, creative uses of technology and community empowerment, underlining the potential of digital tools for communities that are not inherent to the technology but embedded by design and realised through use. We then highlight how the use of digital technologies have helped redefine the nature, organisation and identity of communities, as well as enabled the emergence of community types. We problematize these implications in relation to space, social bonds and everyday life, as well as present current forms of enabled collective actions aimed at social change. Finally, we provide recommendations for future research based on themes of community empowerment, digital literacy, open information sharing, technology design and cultural expressions that have emerged from this study.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Bitton J, Cavaco A, Gaye L, Jones B, Mearns G, Richardson R, Tanaka A

Publication type: Report

Publication status: Published

Series Title: Research Council Scoping Study

Type: Report

Year: 2011

Pages: 12

Institution: Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK

Place Published: Swindon