Experimental spaces for digital competences, civic tech and the politicisation of technology
Education that takes into account socio-cultural and socio-political aspects can be realised neither by a purely technological nor by a top-down approach. We do not only need access to and knowledge of digital technologies, but also the opportunities and competencies to design them, to develop them further and to experiment with them. Diverse inter- and transdisciplinary spaces and formats for debate, learning, teaching, cooperation and democratic participation are being developed to address these issues. Such experimental spaces that are negotiating digital transformations can stimulate a process of deliberation about which digital futures we want to create and be a part of.
Against this backdrop, several initiatives such as CityLAB Berlin, bUm_Raum für engagierte Zivilgesellschaft, Trust Coworking, the Hybrid Space Lab, KiezDigital and C-Base have started their work. The common feature of these initiatives is the work with citizens and communities at the local level. However, they also encounter difficulties:
There is a widespread hesitation to interact with digital technologies.
Projects that are working both with citizens, local politics and administration experience difficulties when trying to bring together the different work cultures. Civic tech projects often fail to make it beyond the initial phase and rarely achieve relevance outside of their region.
In this workshop talk we wanted to create a space for exchange, analysis and collective learning. Together we discussed some of the difficulties and successes openly shared insights that these initiatives have gathered.“