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Kokonohanashi overview

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The kokonohanashi (ここの話 lit. 'talking about here') project works in local settings with a combination of analogue (notebooks, pens, laminated A4 posters, wire, legwork) and open low-tech tools (QR …

The kokonohanashi (ここの話 lit. 'talking about here') project works in local settings with a combination of analogue (notebooks, pens, laminated A4 posters, wire, legwork) and open low-tech tools (QR codes, stripped down Wordpress, email, smart-and-not-so-smart-phones) to investigate the development of a platform for discussion about, and positive action in, city space by the people who most matter - those who experience and use the place in their everyday lives.

It is run by Tokyo-based research and creation unit a-small-lab.

Please contact Chris Berthelsen at a-small-lab with all questions, comments, ideas, requests:
chris@a-small-lab.com

Follow a-small-lab on twitter @a_small_lab

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  • 1. Image: Tokyo (Google Maps)
  • 2. Project Progress Draft/001 November 01 2010kokonohanashi project [ここの話 lit. talking about here] by Chris Berthelsen (chris@a-small-lab.com) a-small-lab.com A project about citizen discussion and involvement in city space in sub/urban Tokyo
  • 3. Reform-minded politicians like Ichio Asukata inYokohama and Ryokichi Minobe in Tokyo were concernedby the lack of grassroots democracy and, just like today,were boxed into a corner by mounting municipal debts.By inviting citizen participationin the design and upkeep ofpublic space, they tested a newform governance that reducedcosts, increased popularattachment to public space andcreated trust in government.(Christian Dimmer, urban designer and Tokyo University research associate [ref]) Image: Kita Bunka Koen, Akishima (Google Maps)
  • 4. Japanese cities have surely changed for the better — orso it seems.Look close enough, however, and you notice thosehostile dividing bars across park benches that preventpeople from sleeping.Somewhere along the way, we must haveforgotten [the] wakeup call for active,compassionate citizens and inclusive publicspaces.Instead, entrepreneurial and creative cities begancompeting for scarcer resources and urban beautificationbecame an end in itself.Brushing up the city image paid off quicker thanempowering citizens in lengthy processes.(Christian Dimmer, urban designer and Tokyo University research associate [ref]) Image: Omotesando Hills, Harajuku (Google Maps)
  • 5. The kokonohanashi (「ここの話」 lit. talking about here) project works locally with a combinat-ion of analogue (notebooks, pens, laminated A4 posters, wire, legwork) and open low-techdigital tools (QR codes, stripped down Wordpress, email, smart-and-not-so-smart-phones) toinvestigate the development of a platform for discussion about, andpositive action in, city space by the people who most matter - those who experience and use the place in their everyday lives. Image: France Bed Factory, Akishima (Google Maps) Rough Schematic
  • 6. External Interaction External interaction with log through commenting Front EndUnregistered Analysis, Outputparticipants discussio (presentations Web Publishing Platform QR codes, URL Collatiaccess + join on, n etc... , reports, direct link, realin location writing in Categ workshops,specific notebooks attached orizati games, etc) Open discussiondiscussion to posters Log onthrough (stripped down etc...posters at wordpress)locationsaround thecity Deeper discussion, Interviews, Communication, Workshops Interaction with city and relevant stakeholders
  • 7. ※ How can we construct low-cost, agile, fine-grained (and also scalable) ways -(1) for people to begin to discuss and interact with the spaces they use, and theother people that use them?(2) to record, share, the living histories of places (memories, experiences,feelings)?First Stage: Five locations in suburban TokyoWhat are:> Official reactions (positive/negative/non-existent, direct/indirect etc)> User reactions/participation (content, patterns, time, feeling etc)> Channels of participation (hierarchy, patterns, content etc)> Materials/Tools (how robust, appropriate, necessary etc)> Places (official, private, semi-public, residential, abandoned etc)> Collaboration, participation avenues?Review/Revise/Collaborate/Interact (Further Stages) More Practical Details
  • 8. The kokonohanashi (「ここの話」 lit. talking about here) project works locally- in the community where we live. With places that we know.At the first stage of testing:> A run-down park in front of a factory (run-down, official)> A friendly neighbourhood park which has been declared a night no-go zone (well-kept, official)> A park under a motorway (run-down, secluded, official)> An abondoned car in an apartment complex car park (illegal use)> A deserted house on a school route (run-down, private property) Image: Western Tokyo (Google Maps)
  • 9. analogue (notebooks, pens, laminated A4 posters, wire, legwork)- materials on location.> Laminated A4 posters fastened with wire and tape (key components of the JapaneseDIY public signage kit) installed in selected locations.> A notebook and pen attached for non-net-enabled users. Image: Examples of street signage in Japan (from FIXES project) Example Poster
  • 10. Trigger Question or StatementExample poster (Top Half, Trigger Statement)
  • 11. Heading: “What do you think about this place?” Logo About the kokonohanashi project Use instructions (access, email, comment etc) Example poster (Bottom Half) QR Code Invitation to add own place to the project Place name Place specific URLInstallation period General contact details (until the end of November)
  • 12. digital (QR codes, stripped down Wordpress, email, smart/not-so-smart-phones)- real(ish) time commenting/contribution/access to other opinions.> Access to location-specific post via QR code, direct URL – PC/Mobile.> Commenting/discussion enabled.> Easy monitoring via comment rss feed. e.g
  • 13. Online component running stripped down Wordpress
  • 14. Access site via QR code (or direct URL) 1 Retrieve message 2 Connect 3 Comment 4
  • 15. Thank You! 5
  • 16. First stage test locations
  • 17. A run-down park in front of a factory“This park is known around here as one-park because it only has one slide”「この公園はすべり台が一つしかないので「ワン公園」とよばれています。」
  • 18. A friendly neighbourhood park which has been declared a night no-go zone.“Why cant we use this park at night anymore?”「この公園が夜間使用禁止になったのはなぜ?」
  • 19. A park under a motorway.“From the outside, parks under motorways look like prettysad places – but whats thereality? ”「近所の皆様、橋の下の遊び場は外から見ると寂しそうな感じですか、実際は?」
  • 20. An abandoned car in an apartment complex car park“This car has been here for three years....what do youthink?”「この廃車は3年以上このままです。どう思いますか?」
  • 21. A deserted house on a school route“This house has been deserted for the last three years. Want to make it something a bit more fun?”「この廃屋は3年以上このままです。楽しい場所に変えてみませんか?」
  • 22. Stay tuned: twitter-@a_small_labinfrequent email update- SIGN UP
  • 23. Contact:Chris Berthelsen(chris@a-small-lab.com)twitter.com/a_small_laba-small-lab.comWith questions,comments, ideas...anything!