Off to China in a few days. Helping lead a workshop on social media for development. SM4D is the term that’s been coined (not by me). But the workshop is part of CSCW in Hangzhou, and I don’t know if I’ll register for the conference after the workshop (it’s spendy, and out of pocket), or, if I’ll just occupy myself in China for a few days.
However, you may be asking “what the heck is SM4D”??
There’s a substantive and rapidly growing community in Information and Communication Technologies for Development. Much of the work in that arena deals with computers, internet, and sensors. Sometimes mobiles. But the idea behind SM4D is that all the social media that has grown up in high resource settings might have utility in low resource settings as well. There are plenty of examples: crowdsourced mapping and translation in Haiti, lots of citizen mobilization in recent days, etc.
So we’re going to spend the day talking about the affordances of social media, the limitations, and whether/how social media can help meet the needs of international development efforts.