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Building networked community involvement

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Talk given to the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, November 3 2010, outlining social media, online community involvement and physical place-making of real estate/renewal development sites.

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Building networked community involvement

  1. 1. Building networked community involvement David Barrie Commission for Architecture & the Built Environment November 3, 2010
  2. 2. We like this…
  3. 3. …and want to square it with this…
  4. 4. One route heavily advocated for just now is ‘social media’…
  5. 5. What is social media? “the peer-to-peer communication and user-generated content made possible through the advent of participatory web tools…” Source: Kanter, B. & Fine, A.H., The Networked Nonprofit (2010)
  6. 6. social media ‘tools’ • Conversation starters like blogs, YouTube and Twitter • Collaboration tools including wikis and Google Groups • Network builders like social networking websites such as Facebook, MySpace and Twitter Source: Kanter, B. & Fine, A.H., The Networked Nonprofit (2010)
  7. 7. But why use social media when our lives are increasingly trapped in in a closed circle…
  8. 8. One answer is a proliferation of online markets…
  9. 9. Audiences & participants:
  10. 10. • 82% of the population in the U.K. are on the internet • 1 in every 4.5mins spent by people online is on social networks • A new member joins the business-orientated site LinkedIn.com every second • The largest living generation is young people born between the years of 1978 and 1992 • 25% of people who play video and other screen games in the USA are over 50 Sources: BBC, Neilsen, Kanter/Fine, Knight Foundation
  11. 11. Here are some other practical reasons to bother:
  12. 12. • people are easy to find online and on many channels • talk is cheap • serendipity is enhanced online • reciprocity online is incredibly easy
  13. 13. Some political reasons:
  14. 14. we need to • encourage citizen activism • design local plans “bottom up” • support “collaborative local platforms” • give communities more powers • “cut demand for the state” • enable low-cost “soft” regeneration
  15. 15. But then there’s also something else….
  16. 16. • failing local markets (empty shops) • end of edge-of-centre, residential-led urban renewal • growth of outsourced public services • rise of social enterprise & “social productivity” • appetite for mashed-up timelines (Lost) & interactive narrative (Seven Days)
  17. 17. ‘open source’ place-making
  18. 18. Some web links and sites that are worth looking at for community organizing
  19. 19. useful networking ‘tools’ … • Meetup - http://www.meetup.com • Facebook - http://www.facebook.com • Facebook Places - http://www.facebook.com/places/ • Twitter - http://www.twitter.com • Twitter lists - @davidbarrie/speirslocks
  20. 20. …building community… • Peckham Power - http://peckhampower.org/ • Groupsnearyou - http://www.groupsnearyou.com/ • Hubbub social game - http://whatsthehubbub.nl/projects/koppe lkiek/
  21. 21. …building ideas… • Craftster - http://www.craftster.org/ • Your Freedom - http://bit.ly/aT1FTy • Bing Maps - http://bit.ly/9gL41Y • Bexhill Local Action Plan - http://www.bexhilllocalactionplan.co.uk/
  22. 22. …sharing the burden… • Wikispaces - http://www.wikipedia.com • Google Docs - https://docs.google.com/ • Neighborgoods - http://neighborgoods.net/ • Kickstarter - http://www.kickstarter.com/
  23. 23. …sharing knowledge… • Geographically-linked news - http://foursquare.com/ - http://www.everyblock.com/ • Geographically-linked games - http://bit.ly/akEDPl • Oral history - http://tellingyourstory.wordpress.com/
  24. 24. And some uses to date that link to the renewal of cities, places and communities:
  25. 25. • Fix my street - http://www.fixmystreet.com/ • You Choose: Redbridge Conversation 2010: http://www.redbridge.gov.uk/cms/redbridge_conversation_2010. aspx • Boston Redevelopment Authority - http://hub2.org/ • Friends of Redcar Cemetary - http://www.forcem.co.uk/ • Heeley Millennium Park - http://millenniumpark.wordpress.com/ • Wake Green Park - http://wakegreenpark.blogspot.com/ • Talk about Local - http://talkaboutlocal.org.uk/how-set- wordpress/
  26. 26. Different types of local websites: • Civil society networks • Local discussion sites • Placeblogs • Local blogazines • Public social spaces • Local action groups Source: Nick Booth, Exploring Hyperlocal, BBC Wesbite, http://bbc.in/aUurhp (2010)
  27. 27. As in urban renewal, social media is populated by certain kinds of individual:
  28. 28. • instigator • evangelist • donor • spreader • happy bystander
  29. 29. Reasons why people gather and share experiences online - according to interaction designers:
  30. 30. • Altruism • Creativity • Validation • Affinity • Prurience
  31. 31. And the most active or interested users, people who are…
  32. 32. • interested in making new friends • keeping up friendships • open to succumbing to social pressure from existing friends • believe in “paying it forward”
  33. 33. Does all of this have implications for place-making?
  34. 34. Yes
  35. 35. • A relationship economy • Temporary ties • Multiple independent groups of friends • Loyalty to experience and data, not platform • Physical places as passing scenery • Physical places that allow you to fulfill a task • ‘Swarming & switching’
  36. 36. Three channels of work • Strategic entrepreneurship • Social entrepreneurship • Community entrepreneurship
  37. 37. 8 actions 1 - Form a Speirs Locks Cultural Improvement District 2 - Review administrative contexts of site 3 - Turn disused adhesives factory in to low-cost shared workspace 4 - Create ‘making’ and ‘doing’ light-manufacturing workshops 5 - Support urban agriculture in leftover spaces 6 - Open up existing premises through programmes of community education and involvement 7 - Create and run a public use/entertainment programme 8 - Create community spaces adjacent to built structures on site
  38. 38. Developer as theatrical manager
  39. 39. Aggregated uses
  40. 40. • Physical space as ‘sovereign real estate’ • Events as ‘transient interrupts’ • Maximise opportunities for users to make their own spaces and relationships • Theme of ‘doing’ and ‘making’ = popular idiomatic understanding of site • Open-ended occupation • Site as catalyst to making markets, rather than centre of a battle plan
  41. 41. ‘urban apps’
  42. 42. Seeing everything as a utility
  43. 43. Seeing property as an ‘engine of participation’
  44. 44. David Barrie David Barrie & Associates project design & delivery - creative/economic planning - public involvement - social ventures Blog: http://davidbarrie.typepad.com Mail: david@davidbarrie.net Twitter: @davidbarrie

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