26 October 2012  - 14.00

Karin_Bild_LIC"Husby Channel", Nomeda and Gediminas Urbonas with Giacomo Castagnola et al, Husby Konsthall, Stockholm August 2012 (Photo: Åsa Andersson Broms)Karin Hansson (PhD Candidate 2009–, Royal Institute of  Art, Stockholm University,  Department of Computer and Systems Sciences)

LOCATION: Room C, Stockholm University, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences, Forum 100, Kista

“How can e-participation be understood? New information communication technologies (ICT) create new types of public spheres, while old social hierarchies prevail. Grounds for discrimination e.g. gender, age, and ethnicity, are just as common online as in other social contexts. Moreover, socio-economic inequalities are emphasized rather than reduced. Therefore it is important to carefully investigate the participatory processes at stake when creating ICT systems aimed at supporting democracy. How can political participatory processes online be understood without relying on a simplistic view of communication technology and political participation? How can we create more open-ended models to understand e-participation in the dynamic, fluid and highly mediated situations of contemporary society? In this thesis, these questions are explored through an iterative process in two studies described in three papers.

The first study discusses how participation in a global community can be understood by translating its organizational principles into a digital system of cooperation. The initial investigation demonstrated how important identity is for technology-using behavior. It also discussed the importance of socio-economic factors for participation in online public spheres. By studying how an interest-based common is established and translating this into design principles for collaborative software, we create a model of how the common can be constituted online.

The thesis also discusses what motivates participation in locally situated commons, i.e. how one can understand the connection between the individuals’ globally scattered communities of interest and their participation in the local culture. The second study emanates from an art exhibition in the public space, and is used as a platform to explore the conditions for e-participation in a neighborhood of Stockholm.”

Download the thesis via this link: