Nonprofit Participation In A Web 2.0 Community Portal

Open Access
Author:
Robinson, Harold Richard
Graduate Program:
Information Sciences and Technology
Degree:
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
May 14, 2010
Committee Members:
  • John Carroll, Thesis Advisor
  • John Millar Carroll, Thesis Advisor
Keywords:
  • Community Informatics
  • Web 2.0
Abstract:
Since Putnam’s observations that suggested a crisis of community was linked to communications technology uses, researchers have tried to assess the civic impact of the Internet. Though opinions have varied over time, the general consensus would seem to be that there is great potential for the Internet in that it potentially provides citizens with access to information that can support goals like civic participation. This paper introduces a design intended to leverage that potential in a geographic community. Using WiFi and location-aware technology, community information can be tied to physical locations of a geographic community in a way which increases its visibility and usefulness. The design also makes use of various Web 2.0 technologies to overcome common challenges of previous community technology designs. As key players in the local community, nonprofit organizations are interviewed about their current uses of technology and their communication practices. Implications are drawn from these interviews for the specific design as well as the use of Web 2.0 technologies for civic and community purposes.