Digital resources are powerful tools that can aid in the process of community building. In this project, we are exploring the ways in which trust (and legacies of mistrust) can lead to social exclusion and power imbalances within minority communities in the UK. While many of these issues have been examined separately, no previous research has examined in detail the relationships between trust, mistrust, power and the role digital technologies may play within communities in mitigating or reaffirming these issues.
This project examines the ways that trust (and mistrust) can lead to social exclusion and imbalances within minority communities in the UK, using both large-scale data analysis and community-based interaction. A significant amount of our work will be based in Haringey, North London, a site where there has been significant issues related to community trust and mistrust in recent memory and where there are significant challenges facing its residents and local authorities in the future related to the sustainability of state provided housing and its redevelopment. Through a combination of ethnographic fieldwork, community workshops and cooperative design activities, we will develop a set of situated technologies to be used by community members and project partners to capturing local insight in relation to mapping community trust and perceived centres of power. The final product of these exchanges and the data collection is the design of a ‘Trust Map’—digital visualization prototype of trust at the scale of locality, community and nationally. By investigating the interplay between trust, power, and empathic behaviour between communities and social (in)equality, the project tests the potential of online resources for mitigating social injustice.
Date: July 2014 – July 2017
Funder: ESRC (EMoTiCoN) £22,000 (Newcastle).
Researchers: John Vines.
Collaborators: Karen Salt (Aberdeen – PI), Emma Flynn (Durham), and Jo Briggs (Northumbria).