CII-Managed Projects (November 2008)
New information and communication technologies (ICTs) represent both potential empowerment for communities but also possible weakening of communities that have little or no access to these media. Accordingly, the Community Informatics Initiative (CII) is dedicated to supporting community empowerment through research, teaching and engagement with communities around Illinois as well as internationally.
Cultural Heritage and Archiving
Archives often represent the ways in which communities come together around shared experiences and memories. We are involved in projects with community partners at the Katherine Dunham Museum http://www.kdcah.com/museum.html in East St. Louis; eBlack Illinois, an emerging online collaboration of Black experiences in Illinois, http://eblackillinois.net/; the Special Collections Department of the University of Illinois at Chicago Libraries; the Puerto Rican Cultural Center; and the Newberry Library, both in Chicago.
Informatics for Community Building
As part of the Illinois Informatics Institute, we are interested in the effective use of technology as well as the creation of new ways to foster interaction and learning. The Community Inquiry Labs, developed over the past ten years, for example, offer a web-based suite of open source software tools that one can draw from to construct an interactive Web site to investigate problems and share information. http://ilabs.inquiry.uiuc.edu/ Studies of community technology centers in Illinois (e.g., Digital East St. Louis, http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/ntac/digitalESL.htm) and São Tomé, West Africa (http://saotomeproject08.wordpress.com/) are additional ways that CII investigates the applications of technologies in communities.
Much of the work in community informatics involves working at various scales, with a variety of people, in different organizations and governmental bodies to build and sustain efforts for the common good. These cross-cutting endeavors can be seen in projects undertaken in partnership with the Puerto Rican Cultural Center in Paseo Boricua, a mainly Puerto Rican neighborhood on Chicago’s west side. Our joint efforts aim at integrating research and action, youth and adults, technology and people, to keep synergies thriving.
Youth Media and Learning
The CII engages with youth in after-school programs as well as workshop settings to support academic excellence as well as informal learning to develop critical skills for civic participation. Activities include Student Opportunities for After-School Resources at Booker T. Washington Elementary School in Champaign (http://courseweb.lis.uiuc.edu/~pmorey/SOAR/SOAR.html) and Youth Community Informatics (http://blog.lis.uiuc.edu/yci/ or yci.illinois.edu).
A Variety of Opportunities in Community Informatics:
CII courses are open to all qualified students across campus, and we sponsor speaker series, brown bag events, and workshops. There are also research and volunteer opportunities. You can learn more about all of those by joining the listserv , by checking the calendar on the homepage, or through exploring this site.
When applying to GSLIS be sure and indicate your interest in community informatics. Once you have been admitted to GSLIS, you will receive information about how to apply for financial aid.
If you are a student at the University and interested in getting involved in CI activities you can join the Community Informatics club by visiting: http://www.cii.illinois.edu/club
Prairienet is a community information network for Champaign-Urbana and the surrounding East-Central Illinois region.
Click here to read the 2010-2011 call for proposals
A blog about community informatics by faculty, staff, and students at Illinois.
Nuevos Horizontes is a Spanish-language radio program and educational outreach initiative.
University Engagement in São Tomé Africa .
CII has teamed up with The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).
- Current Students
- Prospective Students
- Alumni and Friends
- Faculty, Staff & Researchers
- Community Partners