In this talk I will first provide a broad overview of mutual aid, setting it in the context of post-capitalism and diverse communities economies. I will then discussion an ongoing mutual aid project in Atlanta, which was developed in response to the COVID-19 crisis, in order to provide groceries to residents in need. I will the reflect on emerging lessons learned from this project, which effect how we approach design, and offer new themes for consideration for both research and practice.
While STEM fields possess the capacity to analyze the technical and organizational properties of digital interfaces, services, and their associated user practices, they are underequipped to evaluate or interrogate the cultural mediation of design, discourses, and meaning of digital technologies. This presentation describes a possible methodological intervention: critical technocultural discourse analysis (CTDA). CTDA employs critical cultural frameworks (e.g. critical race or feminist theory) with philosophy of technology and science and technology studies to interrogate digital artifacts, their practices, and the beliefs of the users employs them.
First, in Science Everywhere, with colleagues, I have spent over six years designing, developing and situating a social media app, large community displays, and life-relevant science learning experiences for youth in two urban, low-SES neighborhood settings. From this project, I will highlight case studies of child and adult community members that illuminate the role of the Science Everywhere socio-technical system for influencing science disposition shifts in communities. I will highlight key tensions that reveal opportunities and challenges for designing socio-technical systems for data literacy development in elite athletics. Looking across these studies, I will then discuss guidelines for designing socio-technical systems that are deeply embedded in communities to engage a wide range of community members in sustained learning endeavors.
Hand crafts, and the people who practice them, are typically seen as opposite to digital technologies. This talk challenges this split, and proposes eight principles for developing computational design tools that facilitate productive interactions across hand crafts and computational media. A ‘Situated Computations’ framework is an approach to design and computation that grounds technologies in the social world by acknowledging historical, cultural, and material contexts, and seeks to prevent us from choosing to remain ignorant of the political and economic structures in our research and in our creations. Outcomes of a Situated Computations approach to design will be presented.