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Mi Fink app, a participative research-creation experience for afro-caucan territory protection in Colombia

Andrés Eduardo Nieto Vallejo, Isabel Cristina Tobón Giraldo, Carlos Torres Parra

The Traditional Afro-Caucan farm – TAF is part of the northern Cauca culture in Colombia, but it is threatened. Mi Fink is a mobile phone app that vindicates the tradition of the farm as a form of community work an afro-descendant expression about their identity in this territory. This app is the result of a research-creation project with children from the municipality of Villa Rica in the northern region of the Department of Cauca in Colombia. Through collaborative design, a team of professionals from different areas and academic researchers investigated the memories of care and use of their territory. Despite expected limitations related to digital technologies access, this experience shows how easy children can get involved, collaborate and carry out innovative activities with digital devices such as stop motion animation. The project gives clues to the knowledge and recognition of spaces in which participatory design allows a transition from a passive use of mobile phones to a creative perspective using meaningful activities to transform realities. In this way, we are able to construct various stories about their reality, in this case, from children who are often marginalized and excluded from dominant cultural trajectories.


Situated Automation: Algorithmic Creatures in Participatory Design

Jaz Hee-jeong Choi, Laura Forlano, Denisa Kera

This paper introduces the notion of situated automation to explore how emerging technologies of automation (such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and algorithms) might be considered as actors in Participatory Design (PD). The growing significance of these algorithmic systems in the shaping of public and private lives of the citizens make them a timely and important site of research and advocacy. This paper presents examples of practices and projects that work with the paradoxes of automation and participation as a site where the different actors collide and form what we describe as algorithmic creatures. We map the different modes of reflection about/through/with technologies of automation to argue for a PD with algorithmic creatures focused on pluralism, justice, equity, and care.


Participatory construction of futures for the defense of human rights

Paula Astrid Mendez Gonzalez, Sofía Castañeda Mosquera, María Paula Bernal Tinjaca, Ricardo Mejía Sarmiento, Roberto Alejandro Morales Rubio, Juan Camilo Giraldo Manrique, Santiago Baquero Lozano

Participatory design allows for designing speculative futures through a collaborative approach. This paper explores how a human rights defense non-governmental organization (NGO) and a group of designers could explore speculative futures collaboratively. It also reflects on how prototypes of these futures help the organization face potential changes in the country’s social model to make an impact on the defense of human rights during the next ten years. This case study presents how the use of participatory design and speculative design can allow NGOs to explore the futures, identify the opportunities and challenges they offer, and co-design a roadmap to act accordingly.


Matters of Care in Designing a Feminist Coalition

Rafaella P. Eleutério, Frederick C.M. van Amstel

Recent literature on Participatory Design describes the act of designing coalitions around a matter of concern. This paper challenges the notion of concern as the ontological basis of coalitions. Coalitions are, in fact, political organizational forms that have a long history in civil rights movements, characterized by the provisional union of different oppressed groups in times of intense repression. According to feminist literature, what unites people in feminist coalitions are matters of care and not matters of concern. Following this shift of perspective, this research critically revises the notion of designing coalitions while analysing a codesign project for increasing women coffee workers’ visibility in a particular region of Latin America.

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