• Share
  • Email
  • Embed
  • Like
  • Save
  • Private Content
Rohde Transnational Social Activist Communities
 

Rohde Transnational Social Activist Communities

on

  • 617 views

Presentation slides for the International Conference on Communities & Technologies 2009

Presentation slides for the International Conference on Communities & Technologies 2009

Statistics

Views

Total Views
617
Views on SlideShare
617
Embed Views
0

Actions

Likes
0
Downloads
1
Comments
0

0 Embeds 0

No embeds

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Adobe PDF

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

    Rohde Transnational Social Activist Communities Rohde Transnational Social Activist Communities Presentation Transcript

    • Technologies within Transnational Social Activist Communities An Ethnographic Study of the European Social Forum Saqib Saeed, Markus Rohde, Volker Wulf Department of Information Systems and New Media University of Siegen, Hölderlinstr 3, 57076 Siegen, Germany Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Organizational Field of Application Transnational networks of civil society organizations (CSOs), groups, movements and activists Loosely connected Volunteer-based Cultural and language diversity Limited financial and human resources Adhoc-setup, lacking well-organized and institutionalized structures Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • R&D Objective Help to design appropriate technological support for transnational CSO networks Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Research Questions What requirements do CSO networks address to technological support? How do transnational CSO networks interact with technology? How is their technological infrastructure developed and appropriated? What are the main problems that transnational CSO networks face with regard to computer-mediated communication/cooperation? Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Research Program Understand the social practice of transnational CSO networking Understand the state of the art of technological infrastructure Derive design requirements Develop prototypes Evaluate use of prototypes in the social practice Re-design if necessary Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Research Program Understand the social practice of transnational CSO networking Understand the state of the art of technological infrastructure Derive design requirements Develop prototypes Evaluate use of prototypes in the social practice Re-design if necessary Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Social Forums World Social Forum (WSF) process: initiated in 2001 as a counterpart to the World Economic Forum The largest communication space for the alter-globalization movement (for global justice) „Another world is possible!“ Local, national, regional, global forums with independent organizing processes networks of NGOs, labour organizations, trade unions, social movements and grass-roots activists Non-hierarchical structures, absence of central leadership and well-organized institutions Decision-making by consensus Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • History of Social Forums 9 Annual World Social Forum (WSF) Events Central locations, policentric events, global call for action Between 12,000 to 155,000 attendees, thousands organizations, more than 130 countries 5 (Bi-) Annual European Social Forum (ESF) Events since 2002 Central locations st 1 European Social Forum Up to 60,000 attendees, Florence, Italy 2002 hundreds of participating nd 2 European Social Forum Paris, France 2003 organizations 5th European Social Forum, rd 3 European Social Forum London, UK 2004 17th-21st September 2008 (ESF 2008) in Malmo, Sweden th 4 European Social Forum Athens, Greece 2006 13,000 participants 5th European Social Forum Malmo, Sweden 2008 Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Social Forums: Field of Application Social Forums: Events and Organizations/Committees World Social Regional SF: National SF: City/District Forum Social Forums European, German, Italian, African, Asian, Indian, United State/Provincial American etc. States etc. Social Forums Social Forums Social Forums Thematic Social Forums Self-organize and participate Activists local and Individuals Groups Organizations Networks Movements regional Networks national international Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Social Forums: Field of Application Social Forums: Events and Organizations World Social Regional SF: National SF: City/District Forum Social Forums European, German, Italian, African, Asian, Indian, United State/Provincial American etc. States etc. Social Forums Social Forums Social Forums Thematic Social Forums Self-organize and participate Activists local and Individuals Groups Organizations Networks Movements regional Networks national international Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Social Forums: Field of Application Social Forums: Events and Organizations World Social Regional SF: National SF: City/District Forum Social Forums European, German, Italian, African, Asian, Indian, United State/Provincial American etc. States etc. Social Forums Social Forums Social Forums Thematic Social Forums Self-organize and participate Activists local and Individuals Groups Organizations Networks Movements regional Networks national international Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Organizing Structure of ESF 2008 •European Preparatory Assembley (EPA) •Babels(volunteering interpreters) •Web-Team (volunteers for IT mangement) •Networks (specialized thematic groups) •Nordic Organizing Committe (NOC) •139 member organizations •11 Working Groups •Board (financial matters) •Office •Coordination Group Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Organizing Structure of ESF 2008 NOC Babels EPA 139 Member Organizations Coor- Board Office dination Group Experts Net- ALIS Program works Fundraising 11 Working Groups Demonstration Information Web- Culture Team Logistics Mobilization Volunteers Interpretations Contact Group for Europe & the World Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Technological Infrastructure Central Website (official information) Event Website (event information) OpenESF Website (Collaborative tool, Project Workspaces, Wikis, Mailing lists) Mailing lists (communication at the European level) Self-organized resources (volunteers/activists/participants): MySpace Facebook Youtube Twitter … etc. Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • ESF Website Central Website (official information) Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Event Website ESF 2008 Event Website (official information on the recent ESF event) Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Open ESF platform Open ESF (communication platform) Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Research Methods Participant Observations at EPA/NOC meetings (Berlin, Malmo) Online Skype Meetings (3) Semi-structured interviews (14) 4 members of the organizing committee (NOC) 4 members of the “web-team” 4 social activists who organized workshops 2 social activists who attended the event Analysis of Websites and Mailing Lists Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Development of the Event Website 2008 Event Website (Registration of activities, Merging, Event information, Publishing the Program, Storing outcomes) Company volunteering to develop the website Previous website (2006 event) was developed using Plone and the company developers were not familiar with Plone, so they started from the scratch Problems with the software company Communication problems, requirements, limited resources Thus, the 2008 Event Website was developed by extending the previous forum (2006) website by a hired developer from the web-team Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Selection of Themes From Sept. to Nov. 2007 there were collected 70 suggestions for thematic initiatives through the event website NOC combined these suggestions in 7 thematic clusters/categories EPA meeting in November 2007 in Istanbul (Turkey) rejected these categories Discussion at the EPA meeting in January 2008 in Paris and February 2008 in Berlin Nine themes finalized In April 2008 a 10th category was added as a residual category Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Activities Merging Process 800 activities were proposed on the event website until June 2008, each was given a code number Merging to 200 in order to reduce the coordination complexity and due to limited resources Each theme having 1 coordinator and volunteers supporting the merging process Users were given options/suggestions for merging based on similarities in proposed activities Communication by phone, fax, e-mail, lists, skype etc. Data extracted in excel files Merging through the event website, new code numbers for merged activities, activities got lost Mismatch between actual web-database and excel files Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Mobilization Proposed target: 20,000 attendees 2 Mobilization Groups Contact Group for Europe and the World (European mobilization) Mobilization Group (Swedish) Communication Physical Meeting Telephone Conferences Mailing lists Facebook group Mobilization resulted in 13,000 attendees Financial problems Misunderstandings with the Athens 2006 mobilization group Free-rider problem Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Preparing Activities One activity, many organizers (due to merging) Some workshops used OpenESF to plan, others did not, using e-mail or telcos instead Difficulties in using the OpenESF platform Difficulties in access (e.g., due to the war in Georgia) Deficiency of IT skills Language barriers Manyfold negotiation processes Existing network structures and alternative communication infrastructures and habits/practices Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Documenting Outcomes Lacking official outcomes (general reader, proceedings etc.) Objective for ESF: open space for networking and planning on common actions for the future Event website used to record outcomes very unstructured (some initiatives, some networks started, some statements agreed with other organizations) Web-based form to report (43 initiatives published a form) Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Discussion Highly complex interaction processes Heterogeneous infrastructure and communication/use habits Diversity of skills, languages and cultures, expectations and experiences Diversity of organizational structures Knowledge Transfer/Expertise Sharing From one event to the next Between EPA and event committee (NOC) Between ESF and other local, national and regional SFs and the WSF Between working groups, participants etc. in general Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Discussion Perception of Technology Scepticism: technocracy, replacing physical interaction Digital divide Needs for technological infrastructure Standardization of technology Sustainability Decentralized web sources, platforms, mailing lists etc. Search & Find problem Lacking integration concept Common culture of information sharing and usage of ICT infrastructure Limited resources and training facilities (e.g. provided by peers) Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Conclusion and Future Work Need for a better understanding of the social practice of transnational CSO networks Body of knowledge on technology support for this specific kind of ad-hoc communities Definition of design requirements Participatory design of prototypical systems Evaluation in practice Ongoing research with respect to ESF, DSF, WSF Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
    • Thanks for your attention! Markus Rohde markus.rohde@uni-siegen.de http://www.wineme.uni-siegen.de Information Systems and New Media C&T2009, July 25 Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf