Citizen Science in Sweden’s Stigmatized Neighborhoods
Young men who, instead of taking advantage of the opportunity to study, work and live a good life, choose to sell drugs, or challenge the municipality’s monopoly on violence will face the full force of the law. If they need to be locked up, so be it. However, if they want to choose a new path and return to society, they are welcome back (p. 8).
1.1. Eskilstuna and Its Stigmatized Neighborhoods
1.2. Depicting Two Swedish City Suburbs
1.3. Theoretical Implications of Citizen Science
In response to spatial defamation, residents engage in strategies of mutual distancing and lateral denigration; they retreat into the private sphere of the family; and they exit from the neighbourhood (whenever they have the option).
2. Choice of Citizen Science Technique for Data Collection
- Using the Discovery Tool, young males collected data consisting of their self-rated community influence, barriers and facilitators that they perceived lead to either a bad or a good social and physical context, as well as their reflections on the collected data. Thereafter, all photos were reviewed together with a project researcher where the citizen scientists had the opportunity to reflect on their documentation and share additional information for 10–30 min (September to December 2018).
- Researchers analyzed the data and categorized it collectively (January to March 2019).
- Researchers arranged a “citizen science poster presentation” at Mälardalen University’s annual Political Science Day on the 8 April in 2019. They also presented citizen scientists’ pictures to local politicians and bureaucrats in the local government’s Special Committee on Segregation on the 7 May 2019 as a basis for a dialogue on how to improve the situation of residents in Fröslunda and Skiftinge.
3.1. The Political Character and Public Perception of Fröslunda and Skiftinge
3.2. Fröslunda and Skiftinge in the Public’s Perception
… increased targeted police surveillance of criminals and drug-dealing in combination with an expanded camera surveillance … The police are building a new and modern police station and the municipality is pushing through plans for the construction of a new detention centre … (pp. 9–10).
Drug-dealers and people that create insecurity will be banished to allow residents to retake their neighbourhoods. This will be accomplished by cooperating with local commerce and the police. We also want an increased investment in security guards, especially in those neighbourhoods where the need is greatest (p. 9).
3.3. The Social Neighborhood from Within
Palatzet [the local youth club] is the best place around. Many young people come here instead of going down the “wrong road”. We learn a lot here; we learn how to meet others(Authors’ translation: see Figure 6).
When we play in the football court older boys come and take over, they steal our ball too. They are bigger than us, like 20 years old or so and they smoke weed in front of us. We do not want them here(Authors’ translation; Figure 7).
I do not like this place because of peer pressure, older boys smoke and do illegal stuff here and I do not like that. So that’s negative(Authors’ translation; Figure 8).
3.4. The Physical Neighborhood from Within
In this shop, we usually buy things after we play football; it is cool. It is the closest shop, and it is very cheap; it is a good shop. It is a very good place here
At the court we play football, and it feels good, very positive. Anyone can come here and play any time they want. We also come here to socialize. It feels great here(Authors’ translation; Figure 10).
I think the football court is very good. I have been playing here all summer. I think it is better to build a bigger court here. There are too many of us, and we cannot play more than five aside … Therefore, I think they should make it much bigger(Authors’ translation; Figure 10).
Here at the playground, there is hardly any illumination. There are many streetlights, but few of them work. Children and families passing by here feel insecure, including me(Authors’ translation; Figure 11).
3.5. The Social and Political Impact of Citizen Science
4. Discussion and Conclusions
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
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|Population by origin of birth (2017)|
|Born in Sweden||1766||37||2805||37||69,294||66|
|Foreign background 1||3071||63||4805||63||35,415||34|
|Annual mean income of labor||74||63||100|
|Skiftinge||3 (28)||4 (36)||4 (36)||11 (100)|
|Fröslunda||8 (67)||1 (8)||3 (25)||12 (100)|
|Total||11 (48)||5 (22)||7 (30)||23 (100)|
|Gangs of men||1||20||0||0||1||20|
|Gangs of men||4||27||0||0||4||27|
|Parks, playground/outdoor gym||8||17||7||15||1||2|
|Bike and walkability||2||4||2||4||0||0|
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Fell, T.; Rydenstam, T.; Buli, B.G.; King, A.C.; Bälter, K. Citizen Science in Sweden’s Stigmatized Neighborhoods. Sustainability 2021, 13, 10205. https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810205
Fell T, Rydenstam T, Buli BG, King AC, Bälter K. Citizen Science in Sweden’s Stigmatized Neighborhoods. Sustainability. 2021; 13(18):10205. https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810205Chicago/Turabian Style
Fell, Terence, Tove Rydenstam, Benti Geleta Buli, Abby C. King, and Katarina Bälter. 2021. "Citizen Science in Sweden’s Stigmatized Neighborhoods" Sustainability 13, no. 18: 10205. https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810205