Why Government and funders might give more support to community technology, social infrastructure and connecting citizens

This may be wishful thinking, but I sense that we could soon see a resurgence of interest in community technology, social infrastructure and connecting citizens among funders and policy people. That’s something we’ve explored over the past two years through Networked City and the Connecting Londoners group. If you want some earlier backstory community tech … Continue reading “Why Government and funders might give more support to community technology, social infrastructure and connecting citizens”

Network maps need conversations to be useful, and conversations benefit from mapping … the dynamics of civic operating systems

The latest interview by Christine Capra with Aldo de Moor suggests that a map with conversations is nothing … and without some form of mapping conversations are fragmented. Christine and Aldo talk through a process of participatory network mapping which I think brings life to the ideas for civic operating systems which I posted earlier. … Continue reading “Network maps need conversations to be useful, and conversations benefit from mapping … the dynamics of civic operating systems”

Stuff happens: could company operating systems for uncertain futures provide insights into what’s needed for civil society?

Lisa Gill headlines her excellent report from a two-day business forum with a quote from speaker Gary Hamel: “The future is surprisingly indifferent to our preferences” … which might by summarised as “stuff happens”. That’s as true for communities as it is for companies. Unfortunately communities have even less control over their futures. For example, … Continue reading “Stuff happens: could company operating systems for uncertain futures provide insights into what’s needed for civil society?”

How mapping visionaries for responsible tech could help develop a people-centred approach to Smarter London

Doteveryone is underpinning their mission to champion responsible technology for a fairer society by mapping who else shares that vision. I think there’s scope for linking up with our Networked City mapping on the same theme, and using that to organise a group promoting people-centred design for London’s smart city. Doteveryone have worked with the … Continue reading “How mapping visionaries for responsible tech could help develop a people-centred approach to Smarter London”

We need civic operating systems to manage the social fabric for healthy communities – plus a social app store of tools

The idea of civic operating systems , from the Local Trust, provides a model for thinking about how to conserve and develop the social fabric essential for healthy communities. I suggest that to make effective use of the model we need to map social fabric, create a social app store of tools, and develop a … Continue reading “We need civic operating systems to manage the social fabric for healthy communities – plus a social app store of tools”

Report on #FutureCommunities highlights building connections and social infrastructure

The launch of the Local Trust’s report on The Future of Communities this week produced a strong consensus on the challenges for towns and neighbourhoods, and broadly what’s needed to address them. It didn’t offer much practical guidance on where next – but that may come from another event in London next week. One of … Continue reading “Report on #FutureCommunities highlights building connections and social infrastructure”

Residents share ideas on how they can contribute to Inclusive Growth in Barking

The Inclusive Growth event I attended last week in Barking provided residents with much-needed updates on future development plans including 10,000 new homes. It also offered residents the opportunity to say what they think is needed right now – and what they can contribute. At the event I talked first to Matt Scott, who is … Continue reading “Residents share ideas on how they can contribute to Inclusive Growth in Barking”

How maps and network building can contribute to Barking’s vision of inclusive growth

Thames Ward Community Project in Barking is taking a lead in demonstrating how mapping local assets and networks for collaboration can empower residents faced with massive development – and hopefully help create places that work for everyone. Barbara Brayshay and I are today contributing to their Inclusive Growth Summit. A recent report for the Early … Continue reading “How maps and network building can contribute to Barking’s vision of inclusive growth”

How to make London a more Sharing City – find out who’s sharing already and fill the gaps

Yesterday Tom Llewelyn came to London to launch Sharing Cities – Activitating the Urban Commons.  It is a wonderful compendium of people, projects and organisations working together in 80 cities to create community-based solutions to challenges from housing to mobility, energy to water and waste. The launch, appropriately enough, was in one of the centres in … Continue reading “How to make London a more Sharing City – find out who’s sharing already and fill the gaps”

Deputy Mayor opens discussion on social isolation and loneliness in London. The positive or negative role of tech deserves attention.

London’s Deputy Mayor, Matthew Ryder QC, is hosting a public conversation at City Hall next month on ‘Social Isolation and Loneliness in London.’ There’s a great line up of speakers, and I hope there’s space for discussion about our interest in the role of technology and networks. Here’s news of the event, from the registration … Continue reading “Deputy Mayor opens discussion on social isolation and loneliness in London. The positive or negative role of tech deserves attention.”