Special Issue "Community Informatics Design for Digital Social Systems: The Ultimate Tool for a Human Digital Age"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2018)
Dr. Pierre-Léonard Harvey
Departement of Social and Public Communication, Faculty of Communication, University of Quebec in Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
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Interests: communication theories and methodologies; large scale socio-technical system design; digital social system; social informatics; ethics of design; E-learning platform; design platform and business models; virtual communities; community informatics design; innovation ecosystem; citizen science; living labs and open innovation
There are growing programs of research showing that contemporary Information and Communication fields are increasingly concerned with the multiple contextual and social aspects in which ICT are modelled, used or designed. We are referring to programs of research such as Information Science, CMO, Computing Science, Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Internet of Things, Cyber-physical Systems, Computational Social Sciences, CSCW, HCI, Internet Research, Community Informatics, Social Computing, Design Science, Design Thinking, Science Technology and Society. There is a paradigm shift, we call “Digital Social System” (DSS) that range from management and computing fields to complexity science and social sciences towards an anchoring of ICT design in all kind of human activity systems. It has been slowly gathering momentum over the past 30 years and is now beginning to move from the periphery of the design and computing fields to a mainstream current of programming and designing in different domains of science. This new transdisciplinary paradigm represents a growing trend in soft sciences and hard sciences. This trend is enabling the convergence of Internet of Things, Cyber-Physical Systems, Social Sciences and Design Thinking which is leading to the co-creation of innumerable Digital Social Systems: Intelligent Social Systems, Cyber-Physical Social Systems, Hybrid Online Social Systems, Smart Communities, Smart Cities, Virtual Communities of Practice, Virtual Collaborative Networks, Collaborative and Design Platforms, Innovation Ecosystem. DSS are arranged through various objects including both social agents and physical things, that interact and collaborate with each other. DSS are hybrid online social system supporting human activity systems which involve individuals, communities, vast collectives of people or artificial agents that co-design multiple contextual aspects of lifeworld and which can act within a dynamic shared social cyberspace supported by social media and creativity tools. This cyberspace exists in the real world of organizations and institutions and contributes to governance, decision-making, sustainable development within our institutions and enterprises. While there is a growing recognition among information and communication researchers that computer systems are designed for social practices, the Internet still tends to be viewed as an artifact with the focus being on its technological and material aspects, neglecting their social structure and their conscientious design in the service of society.
Community Informatics Design is a form of co-design for the conscious evolution of DSS in society with the support of ICT devices considered as social technologies. It is oriented towards improvement of our quality of life and the betterment of human kind. In this Special Issue, we will combine hard sciences and soft sciences to further develop:
- philosophical foundations—to give orientation and ethical values to our future systems;
- methodologies—for the co-building and designing of implementable models and instantiation of digital social systems;
- transdisciplinary methodologies—to work toward a common language and common social understanding of the problematics and creatively develop solutions and scenarii;
- applications—the way researchers from arts, social sciences, technology and engineering work together in a transdisciplinary culture.
This Special Issue of Information will also explore the notion whether the social web is not only, as an artifact, an element of the ecosystems relationship comprising the social structure in which we evolve, but also is a digital social system informing an organization, a social structure or a whole cultural context. This is because the Social Web has all the qualities (aspects) and all the morphogenetics attributes of a social structure. This is an ambitious hypothesis, considering that most of social scientists could concede that the social web should be considered as a socio-technical system with certain social and technical attributes, but not recognizing the fact that the social web is a real social system in itself. Not only should we say that the social web is a true social structure, built on communication events, networks, patterns and artifacts. It is, as well, a true social system designed and built with the aid of artifacts, being both the multi-aspectual context and an ontological entity in large scale projects where human interaction and ICT are co-evolving among new social structures of communication. This transdisciplinary paradigm offers us the positions and practices which are analogous to our roles in real world functioning, which are deepened, extended, articulated and changed by use and co-design of ICT through multiple spaces in life-world: physical spaces, cognitive spaces, social spaces, cyberspaces, thinking spaces, meaning spaces.
The issues here are substantive and will have profound implications for the understanding of different scientific domains. Community Informatics Design Applied to Digital Social System involves a profound transdisciplinary re-thinking of the computing and social fields confronted with the communicational challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution in all walk of life.Dr. Pierre-Léonard Harvey
Manuscript Submission Information
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