Ein Tisch auf Wanderschaft

Im Rahmen des MobileAge Projekts haben wir in den vergangenen Monaten einen digitalen Stadtteilführer für ältere Menschen in Bremen Osterholz entwickelt und umgesetzt. Dies haben wir und das Forschungsinstitut Technologie und Behinderung der evang. Stiftung Volmarstein gemeinsam mit älteren Menschen aus Osterholz und lokalen Akteuren wie etwa den Quartiersmanagern, dem Ortsamtsleiter, verschiedenen Organisationen (z.B. BORIS, Geschichtswerkstatt, Mütterzentrum) getan. Ein erster Prototyp ist seit einigen Wochen online und wir sammeln Feedback sowohl zum Design als auch der Korrektheit der bereitgestellten Informationen. Um den Stadtteilführer im Stadtteil bekannt zu machen, aber auch Menschen, die keine digitale Geräten besitzen, den Zugang zu ermöglichen, werden wir in den kommenden Wochen verschiedenen Osterholzer Einrichtungen unseren Multi-Touch-Table leihweise zur Verfügung stellen. Begonnen haben wir heute im Café Blocksberg (Blockdieck), in sechs Wochen wird der Tisch dann ins Café Gabriely (Tenever) umziehen. Danach folgen Standorte in den anderen Ortsteilen (Schweizer Viertel, Osterholz, Ellener Feld).

Wir sind auf die Rückmeldungen der Nutzerinnen und Nutzer gespannt, und hoffen, dass viele ältere Osterholzer Interesse haben.

Den Prototypen kann man auch hier besuchen: www.bremen.de/osterholz/senioren

Eine unserer Teilnehmerinnen hat uns bei der Erstellung eines kurzen Erklärvideos unterstützt und führt in die Nutzung des Stadtteilführers ein.

Vorstellung- Digitaler Stadtteilführer für ältere Menschen in Osterholz from MobileAge on Vimeo.

Interim Study on Co-creation Practices

Since my last post, we have had a busy time with our co-creators in MobileAge to not only co-design the map-based application for Bremen’s district Osterholz but to also co-creation, validate and integrate relevant data. Our participants received their own tablets for the duration of 8 weeks and actively complemented the efforts of other stakeholders in the district. We will soon launch the official app (usability tests and evaluation are still to be done).

We have also submitted the interim study of our co-creation activities in Bremen and South Lakeland: D1.2 FINAL Interim study on co-creation practices.

 

 

MobileAge in Bremen begins with concept development

The co-creation activities at MobileAge’s German fieldsite are progressing well. Since May 2016 researchers from ifib meet regularly with senior citizens from Bremen’s district Osterholz and other relevant stakeholders and intermediaries. One objective of MobileAge is the development of a co-creation methdology and the evaluation of suitable methods.

One method we are currently using and evaluating is called “cultural probes”. In Bremen Osterholz 11 participants were asked to keep a diary for one week, take pictures and illustrate neighbourhood maps in order to allow ifib’s researcher a glimpse into their everyday activities. These so-called “cultural probes” were subsequently analysed and each of the participants was interviewed individually for about 90 minutes. On the 12th of July we conducted a workshop were the results of the probes and interviews were discussed with the participants. Subsequently we jointly developed 3 “personas” based on workshop results and the German Senior Citizen Survey (Deutschers Alterssurvey). These personas portray different ideal types of elderly people living in Osterholz and their life situations. We discussed these personas on the 16th of August. At this workshop we identified relevant topics and themes, information and communication requirements as well as resources of senior citizens. The ideas developed so far are interesting, engaging and very relevant to the life situation of many senior citizens living in Osterholz. We are hence looking forward to the upcoming months and our further collaborative co-creation.

The next project meeting will take place on the 7th of September from 10.30 – 12.00am at the EastSide Internetcafé in Tenever. New participants are very welcome as this would be an ideal event to join our co-creation activities.

MobileAge project meeting

APserveImage.phpThe second project meeting of our EU-funded project Mobile Age was held in the city of Zaragoza, Spain from 5th to 6th of July, 2016. Through the connection of open data, mobile technologies and public services Mobile Age aims to improve the public participation of senior citizens across Europe and facilitate their independent living. The objective is on the one hand to collaboratively develop mobile applications with and for senior citizens and on the other hand to test and implement methods for the involvement of elderly people in the development of public online services. The city of Zaragoza is besides Bremen (DE), South Lakeland (UK) and Central Macedonia (GR) one of the field sites where Mobile Age is carried out. The local government of Zaragoza already provides innovative projects for the participation of (senior) citizens.

The meeting was held in the premises of the local government. On the first day of the meeting the current state of the work packages was presented by the responsible partners. An important item was the exchange between the two pilot field sites in Bremen and South Lakeland, where ifib and Lancaster University already are working with elderly on the development of service applications. Besides, the project partner from the local government in Zaragoza reported on their already existing local activities and services for elderly. On the second day a workshop was held to coordinate the activities of the technical and the process strand and the further action was coordinated. The next meeting is going to take place in Bremen in the end of the year.

(text originally posted on ifib blog here)

Kick-off for MobileAge activities in Bremen

We kicked-off our co-creation activities in one of Bremen’s most diverse districts: Osterholz. Last Wednesday, 8 June 2016, we conducted the first workshop with 12 interested participants in a meeting room of the district’s administration office. The participants were recruited with support of a local project team at an information event that took place two weeks earlier, through ifib’s participation at a neighbourhood festival and articles in the local newspaper as well as personal communication. The goal of ifib’s co-creation activities in Osterholz is to jointly design and develop a mobile public service application for senior citizens that facilitates social inclusion.

After presenting the project and the team, the participants were asked to introduce themselves. Most participants emphasised their close connection to the district and were looking forward to learning more about it. They bring together a great and complementary mix of expertise and knowledge with respect to knowledge about the district, experience and use of mobile technologies and technology development as well as engagement in voluntary work. They all share an interest in creating something together that might be helpful and interesting for themselves, other seniors and their district

The workshop’s main engagement activity was the validation of a customised quartets (card game) about Osterholz. During the information event, our project team had asked participants to complete questions concerning places of interest, information needs and other topics regarding the district such as “What do I like about the district?”, “Where do I go with visitors?”, “What is missing in Osterholz”. At the kick-off workshop we discussed the contents and complemented them while having coffee and cake. This was a first activity to jointly develop an understanding of the potential diversity of information needs of senior citizens as well as an appreciation for the knowledge and experience that the co-creators bring to the project.

At the end of the workshop cultural probes were handed out to the participants. Cultural probes are hand-made research materials that help participants to self-document their everyday activities regarding certain topics. In case of the Mobile Age project we are especially interested in the participant’s relation to their district, their social networks, their information needs as well as their technology and media experiences and use. The participants examined the cultural probes bag and its contents with curiosity and said they were looking forward to engaging with the material.

We will be meeting again with our participants in ten days to collect the cultural probes. After analysing the materials, single interviews will be conducted with the participants in order to discuss the probes and to gain deeper understanding of their content. We feel excited that thanks to the local support we are able to start their fieldwork with so many interested and motivated participants and are looking forward to the future co-creation process.

Against the rule of algorithms! How do we resume control?

Yesterday I took part in a panel entitled: “Against the rule of algorithms! How do we resume control?” („Wider die Herrschaft der Algorithmen! Wie bekommen wir die Kontrolle zurück?“). It was part of this year’s Media Convention and 10th re:publica.The panel was organised by ARTE and moderated by Carolyn Hoefchen. I discussed with Prof. Dr. Gerd Gigerenzer (director @ Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung in Berlin), Dr. Cornelius Puschmann (project manager @ Humboldt Institut for Internet and Society) and Jonas Schlatterbeck (Senior Social Media Manager ARTE).

Prof. Gigerenzer opened the panel by presenting his co-authored “Digital Manifest” („Digital Manifests“).He pointed at the example of “Big Data Nudgung” and asked whether algorithms had taken control over our everyday live. Subsequently we discussed the risks of an increasing datafication and relevance of algorithms as well as the role of media and governmental organisation. Closing the session all panelists proposed concrete ideas on how to resume control.

pictures (c) Uwe Völkner Fox for MEDIA CONVENTION

EU project on co-created personalised mobile access to public services for senior citizens

2016-02-10 12.35.03 I am very excited to announce that we have been selected by the European Commission for a 3-year research and innovation action. The MobileAge project started in February 2016 and will focus on open government data, mobile technology, and the provision of public services in relation to Europe’s elderly population. Europe’s senior citizens are growing steadily and are predicted to comprise of 28% of Europe’s population by 2020. However, senior citizens do not normally share the same level of connectivity to the Internet as younger generations, and while government agencies are increasingly providing their services through digital platforms, this risks excluding senior citizens from the design and use of such services.

Mobile Age will provide the basis for the development of mobile-based open government services focused on senior citizens. We follow a co-creation methodological approach that will allow for a substantive participation of senior citizens. MobileAge will focus on the co-creation of services related to the production and use of open data for cities. This will be achieved by pursuing four objectives:

i) exploring and implementing innovative ways to support senior citizens to access and use public services through personal mobile technologies that are based on open government data,
ii) develop and deploy co-creation approaches and methodologies to engage senior citizens effectively;
iii) develop a situated, practice-based understanding of accessibility, mobility and usability of services from a senior-citizen point of view; and
iv) develop a framework for impact assessment and evaluation for co-creation approaches to open service development for the ageing population.

Mobile Age’s approach will be applied in cities and counties that are already providing innovative approaches for the participation of senior people in the development of city services: Bremen, South Lakeland, Zaragoza and the Region of Central Macedonia, with scenarios related to social inclusion, extending independent living, data curation for a safer and more accessible city, and the management of personal health information.

My role will be to lead a work package on Participatory Design in Civic Tech and Open Data, and I am very much looking forward to this challenging project.

Call for Papers: Considering the performativity of our own research practices

I am delighted to announce the call for papers for our track at 4S/EASST 2016 from 31st August to 3rd September in Barcelona. I’ll be running the session with Lisa Wood and Lucas Introna from Lancaster University. Deadline for paper submissions is 21st February 2016. Please see for more details here.

Short Abstract

What happens if we take Barad’s call for ethico-onto-epistemology seriously? How can we perform STS ‘by Other Means’, open the black box of ethnographies, and participate in their performative enactment more reflexively and creatively? Paper presentation and discussion facilitated by a respondent.

Long Abstract

STS has a strong history of reflecting on the epistemic practices of others. Yet, in spite of a strong methodological focus, STS scholars often only partially consider the performative conditions of their own research practices—not always acknowledging that their own epistemic practices are not merely ‘capturing’ the world, but rather enacting it. As Barad (2007) argues ‘”each of us” is part of the intra-active ongoing articulation of the world in its differential mattering’ (p.381). Through our methods we make particular cuts and we need to acknowledge that these cuts are performative, and that other cuts are possible. How we practice our research is constitutive of what becomes enacted as knowledge (Whitehead, 1978). This has important ontological and ethical implications. Barad asks us to consider an ‘ethico-onto-epistemology’ which appreciates this intertwining of ethics, knowing and becoming.

We invite empirical or theoretical papers relating (but not limited) to the following themes:

● The performative conditions of methods and methodology in STS;

● Production and entanglement of subjects and objects through methods;

● The performativity of ethnographic work (also, reconsidering ethnographic work in terms of alternatives such as autoethnography or digital ethnography). What does doing ethnography differently enact, and why does it matter?

● Ethical, policy, practice and dissemination implications of the performativity of epistemic practices;

● How and what do epistemic practices such as participant observation, interviewing, transcribing, coding, and qualitative analysis enact, and why does it matter?

● What do enactments of epistemic practices offer in relation to everyday practices?

Call for abstract: Performing openess and practicing ‘minga’ in government, education and software development

Raoni Rajão (UFMG, Brazil) and I are organising a sub-theme at next year’s LAEMOS (Latin-American and European Meeting on Organization Studies). The title of our sub-theme is “Performing openess and practicing ‘minga’ in government, education and software development”. For those who are not familiar with the notion of ‘minga’, it is a Latinamerican concept for a collective job done in favour of the community. Hence we are interested in discussing the performance of openness, and ways in which it matters in civic tech contexts in particular.

You may find the call for abstracts here and more information about the conference to be held in Viña del Mar (6-9 April 2016) here. The deadline for abstracts (1000 words) is 10th November 2015. LAEMOS is the premier conference on Latin American and European Organization Studies and supported by EGOS (European Group for Organizational Studies). Its purpose is to strengthen the Latin America–Europe scholarly link by encouraging interdisciplinary studies of organizations in Latin American and European societies. The conference takes place every two years.

European Group for Organizational Studies Colloquium

DSC_0324 (2) The 31st EGOS Colloquium took place in Athens from 2nd to 4th of July 2015. I participated in the sub-theme 45: Materiality, Human Agency and Practice which was convened by Eleni Lamprou (ALBA), Nathalie Mitev (King’s College London) and Lucas Introna (Lancaster). The participants included scholars from design research, IS, anthropology, technology studies, gender studies and many more; and covered topics ranging from digital book publishing to 3D printing to fertility treatments. I had the great opportunity to meet a number of scholars whose new work I greatly enjoyed hearing about, in particular Wanda Orlikowski, Susan Scott, Matthew Jones, Séamas Kelly, François-Xavier de Vaujany, Leon Hempel and Roser Pujadas. Overall it was an inspiring track and conversation that demonstrated the width of current research on materiality and practice-based approaches.

I presented a paper entitled: Considering the practicing of sociomaterial research and its enactments. You may find the paper and presentation slides here. → full paperpresentation slides