Abstract

In this paper, we present a taxonomy for understanding designs and designing of Information & Communication Technologies (ICT) in the field of ‘Social Action'. We use the term ‘Social Action' to refer to activities of individuals and organisations in civil society, which are oriented towards social (rather than primarily economic) goals. We then apply the term e-Social Action to refer to the application of ICT in these activities. This definition incorporates a wide range of initiatives, varying from: trade-unions logging safety inspections on ships, Age Concern York organising volunteers to place on-line supermarket orders on behalf of housebound elderly people; the International Red Cross using logistics software to deliver emergency aid; and Martus.org providing technology to enable victims of human-rights abuse to report their experience whilst protecting their anonymity and thus avoiding reprisals. To study designing in this broad space, it is necessary to understand key dimensions of the settings where designing takes place. The aim of this paper is to examine how information and communication technologies in social action can be understood, classified and distinguished, to allow for more refined explorations of designing in this space.

Keywords:

e-SocialAction, Taxonomy, design and society

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Jul 16th, 12:00 AM

Designing for e-Social Action An Application Taxonomy

In this paper, we present a taxonomy for understanding designs and designing of Information & Communication Technologies (ICT) in the field of ‘Social Action'. We use the term ‘Social Action' to refer to activities of individuals and organisations in civil society, which are oriented towards social (rather than primarily economic) goals. We then apply the term e-Social Action to refer to the application of ICT in these activities. This definition incorporates a wide range of initiatives, varying from: trade-unions logging safety inspections on ships, Age Concern York organising volunteers to place on-line supermarket orders on behalf of housebound elderly people; the International Red Cross using logistics software to deliver emergency aid; and Martus.org providing technology to enable victims of human-rights abuse to report their experience whilst protecting their anonymity and thus avoiding reprisals. To study designing in this broad space, it is necessary to understand key dimensions of the settings where designing takes place. The aim of this paper is to examine how information and communication technologies in social action can be understood, classified and distinguished, to allow for more refined explorations of designing in this space.

 

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