Social Reporter

Networked City development

Social Reporter

I’m currently writing for a new Networked City blog which complements our NWC wiki and NWC forum. Networked City is a loose framework within which people, projects and organisations can learn how to use mapping, network building, data and technology for community and social benefit. We are developing a network and communities of practice. Recent posts at Networked City. Smarter London Together starts on the road to people-first design. Can it also lead to strong civil society?

2018 159

Our first year exploring how to make London a more Networked City

Social Reporter

Over the past year I’ve worked with Drew Mackie, Matt Scott and a host of other people on an exploration into how we can use network thinking, digital tech and self-organising to support London civil society.

2018 207

Explaining to London’s Deputy Mayor how mapping can help connect Londoners and #reclaimourspaces

Social Reporter

As I reported earlier in the this update , I’ve been working with community groups and networks to develop ideas for a more networked approach to support for London’s civil society.

2017 207

Help us co-design a Living Lab to show #thewayahead for London’s civil society

Social Reporter

Recently I’ve been writing at mediablends.com about a major initiative from London Funders, called The Way Ahead. Here’s some reference to TWA.

2016 207

Looking for ideas at @LDNCommMedia summit on how community media can help in Connecting Londoners. Here’s our headlines.

Social Reporter

Originally posted on Connecting Londoners. I’m going to the London Community Media Summit later today, hoping to have some useful conversations about the role of local blogs, news sites, online communities and radio in Connecting Londoners and making London a more Networked City. It provides a good nudge for me to write some headlines summarising where we at, with reference links and notes.

2017 159

At last we have a shared framework for deep thinking about digital engagement

Social Reporter

Any party or coalition that comes to power after the May election will have have to re-address the two main aspects of the government-social digital landscape. One the one hand they’ll need to continue to use tech in transforming and improving services (and saving money), driven from the top.

2015 173

Why conversation is the best way to share knowledge

Social Reporter

Often the simplest methods can yield the best results in complex situations – particularly if they help release people’s enthusiasm for sharing experience socially.

2013 200

Using digital technology and asset mapping to tackle social isolation – without special funding

Social Reporter

I’m sure that the 15 partnerships supported under the Big Lottery Fund’s £82 million programme to tackle social isolation, which I wrote about earlier , will produce excellent projects over the next five years – but how about the other areas that pitched but did not get funding?

2014 164

Citizen journalists animate a virtual high street for independent living support and conversation

Social Reporter

Access Dorset’s Virtual Centre for Independent Living via kwout.

2013 179

The Cola Road Documentary and what’s next for Colalife

Social Reporter

The RSA Great Room , with its James Barry paintings of The Progress of Human Knowledge, was a fine setting yesterday for the launch of The Cola Road Documentary telling the story of the Colalife mission to deliver medicines to poor mothers in isolated Zambian villages.

2013 182

Techy lunch in the City shows community spirit of corporate lawyers

Social Reporter

I’m a big admirer of the the techy tea party movement pioneered by Sharon Tynan for Age UK London and then developed nationally by EE and Age UK. There’s now a National Techy Tea Party Day – or you can organise your own, as I reported last year from Primrose Hill.

2015 130

A tasty intro to digital – Tea, Toast and T’Internet

Social Reporter

Time was when introducing older people to the potential of the online world – in official pursuit of digital inclusion – meant a computer, trainer, and possibly a bit of a struggle with the mouse. Now we are beginning to see a less formal approach: tea, toast and tablets.

2014 158

A lesson in co-design: why the walk to the river beats a trip to the well

Social Reporter

The importance of doing things with people, rather to them or for them, has cropped up a few times in my recent posts … whether designing technology for a better later life , re-inventing a knowledge hub , or re-learning the lessons of community architecture.

2013 176

My idea for digital inclusion – the minimal technology assessment kit

Social Reporter

Provocation: instead of promoting an over-rich mix of technology to people who are resistant or not interested, offer a way to understand how the world is changing and then assess how little tech they might need for their needs and interests.

2014 158

Preview of the Living Lab for (digital) life

Social Reporter

The workshop that Drew Mackie and I ran last week , exploring how to help people adopt digital technology, is part of a suite of games and other methods we are developing, with Sangeet Bhullar, under the title of Living Lab. I wrote then that I would explain further – so here goes.

2014 158

How our workshop game confirmed all digital adoption is personal

Social Reporter

This week some 50 people joined us in exploring how older people, or indeed anyone, might be encouraged to engage with digital technology and the Internet – without a screen in sight. Instead we used bits of card, flip charts and a lot of animated conversation.

2014 158

Ten pillars of wisdom: a manifesto for a better later life

Social Reporter

There’s lots of research, programmes and even innovation funding to address the challenges of later life, as our team of socialreporters detailed in a recent exploration for Nominet Trust. However, most of this is about doing things FOR older people.

2013 173

Open Policy Making promises engagement as well as digital innovation

Social Reporter

A couple of posts on the Open Policy Making blog this week provide insights into how digital technologies, network thinking, and new ways for government to operate may change the way we receive services, engage as citizens – and maybe develop our own community-level innovations.

2015 130

Big Lottery Fund soft launches online community – and advertises an interesting job

Social Reporter

The Big Lottery Fund has opened up an online community platform that’s been under development for some months, judging by earliest message in some of the forums, and news trailed here.

2015 130

Dropping into conversations about Community Architecture, 25 years on

Social Reporter

Update on Ageing Better Innovation – look to apps and connectors

Social Reporter

Here’s an update on my exploration into how digital innovation may help support personal well-being, and services for ageing better.

2014 130

Playing through council plans for digital participation in the face of cuts

Social Reporter

Summary: How we used a cast of fictitious characters and organisations to help a London borough plan its digital participation strategy in the face of austerity cuts.

2014 130

SEEFA symposium identifies challenges to innovation in Ageing Better – it’s culture as much as tech

Social Reporter

Summary: a symposium on innovation, technology and later life provides confirmation that many of the challenges to making use of tech for ageing better are organisational and cultural as well as technical. We have plenty of tech – the issues are how to personalise and support use appropriate to people’s needs and situation. But ageing organisations can’t do that if they aren’t using social tech themselves.

2015 116

Joining up ideas for a smarter democratic London

Social Reporter

Summary : inventing some fictitious Londoners and telling the stories of how technology could help them engage with their city could both help create Smart London and enliven the next Mayoral election. A virtual panel of real Londoners could offer a running commentary on the campaign.

2014 130

Print your own WikiHouse – the new Community Architecture

Social Reporter

Following my post about the relaunch of the 1987 book on Community Architecture , Charles Knevitt sent me a link to an excellent TED talk spotted by his co-author Nick Wates.

2013 141

Developing a Lobbi kit for local agents of change

Social Reporter

Following a Lobbi strategy group meeting yesterday – which I trailed here – it looks as if one strand of development will focus on a kit of technology tools to support local change agents … that is people doing good stuff in their community.

2013 141

Two reports promote people-led local solutions – Big Lottery Fund strategy and a Locality campaign

Social Reporter

Two launch events today promote more local control and citizen involvement in the delivery of services and the development of community projects. Locality, through its Keep it Local campaign , is pressing for more public service contracts to be let to local organisations, instead of large private sector companies. They quote research promising big savings, and well as more responsive services.

2015 109

Update on Living Well in the Digital Age 2

Social Reporter

Over the past few months I’ve been blogging at mediablends.com about my exploration, with Drew Mackie, into Living Well in the Digital Age , and been rather remiss in failing to provide an update since April – so here goes.

2015 100

Further insights from Colalife into design innovation – and how (not) to report it

Social Reporter

Simon Berry blogs a nuanced account of how Colalife is changing its award-winning package – originally designed to use spare space in CocaCola crates – to deliver medicines to poor mothers in isolated Zambian villages, and how this has been reported.

2013 130

Launching the Big Society Network

Social Reporter

Immediately after the Conservatives presented their vision of the Big Society , David Cameron walked down the road and helped launch the Big Society Network. However, he was at pains to emphasise it was a non-partisan initiative, and he hoped Labour would support the idea if they won the election.

2010 199

Joining The Amazings for street photography and sociability

Social Reporter

I spent yesterday at An Amazing event on street photography … by which I mean in part that it was organised by The Amazings , a social enterprise in East London helping people who have retired, or are about to retire, to share their skills.

2012 158

Turning a digital adoption report into a game of phones, tablets, TVs – and maybe computers

Social Reporter

Summary: the impact of reports and campaigns urging digital adoption may be limited because people’s needs and interests are different. A game about online activities could provide insights into how to personalise. Your ideas welcome. Last year I worked with colleagues on a report for Nominet Trust about how digital technology can help us lead a better life as we get older.

2014 122

Realising the knowledge assets of research for the rest of us – how about a set of recipe cards?

Social Reporter

This piece is about making academic and professional research as useful as possible to the intended beneficiaries – in this case people later in life and/or with disabilities, and those helping them – a well as professionals.

2013 130

Keeping the City clean with a smartphone app

Social Reporter

I often find that conversation about how citizens might use tech to help improve their neighbourhoods throws up the idea of reporting rubbish, graffiti and potholes online … and that may then lead to “do you know about FixMyStreet ” and other good things from MySociety.

2013 130

A little recap on Big Society

Social Reporter

I’m really enjoying Paul Twivy’s book Be Your Own Politician , which champions social action and citizen engagement, informed by his insider knowledge of how challenging it is to promote and negotiate support for that within the political establishment and Whitehall. Paul recounts how he succeeded through work with Comic Relief, Timebanking, Change the World for a Fiver, and the Big Lunch, among much else – but not so much with the Big Society Network and Your Square Mile.

2015 100

Updating exploration into Living Well in the Digital Age

Social Reporter

Update summary: Over the past month we’ve run a workshop with the Department for Communities and Local Government; developed some ideas on why digital innovation is important on various fronts; engaged with the new Centre for Ageing Better; and authored a paper on networks and network mapping. In addition I’ve taken a few steps to re-organise content, including moving blogging about Living Well across to mediablends.com and setting up a wiki. Blog posts from mediablends.com.

2015 100

Changing the world without too much worthiness

Social Reporter

Rob Hopkins, founder of the Transition Movement, has just published a book on perhaps the most serious long-term global threats we face: climate change and the end of the age of cheap energy. There’s a powerful little promotional video too.

2013 130

10 messages in planning digital engagement with young people

Social Reporter

Below are 10 messages to consider in planning any project using digital technology to engage young people and address the key challenges they face. I think most are relevant to any digital engagement process. The messages have been summarised by Tim Davies from the event we ran last week with Nominet Trust as part of the exploration I reported here. The exploration will help frame a major funding challenge programme.

10 messages in planning digital engagement with young people

Social Reporter

Below are 10 messages to consider in planning any project using digital technology to engage young people and address the key challenges they face. I think most are relevant to any digital engagement process. The messages have been summarised by Tim Davies from the event we ran last week with Nominet Trust as part of the exploration I reported here. The exploration will help frame a major funding challenge programme.

Introducing Lobbi – with bold aims to change politics locally and globally

Social Reporter

Downloading Democracy 2013 – Archived Live Stream from John Popham on Vimeo. Earlier this week Lobbi , a new initiative promoting citizen engagement and action through social media, hosted a Downloading Democracy event in London.

2013 130