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Join us for the first #CivicMediaChat on Play and Creativity, Monday the 27th at 4pm EST!

December 04, 2015

By Becky Michelson


The first Civic Media Project Twitter chat will feature several case study authors from the Play and Creativity section. During the chat, we will be discussing themes such as the role for youth in civic engagement, implementation challenges of creative civic engagement projects, the inherent tensions between work and play, and more. Examples will be drawn from the authors’ informed experiences with the case studies: “Terra Incognita: Serendipity and Discovery in the Age of Personalization” by Catherine D’Ignazio and “Race to the White” by Antero Garcia and Ellen Middaugh.

Featured Participants:

Catherine D’Ignazio, Assistant Professor, Emerson College

Catherine is a researcher, artist and software developer who investigates how data visualization, technology and new forms of storytelling can be used for civic engagement. She is currently working with the Public Laboratory for Technology and Science to create an open source water sensing toolkit for journalists. Her art and design projects have won awards from the Tanne Foundation,, the LEF Foundation, and Dream It, Code It, Win It. In 2009, she was a finalist for the Foster Prize at the ICA Boston. Her work has been exhibited at the Eyebeam Center for Art & Technology, Museo d’Antiochia of Medellin, and the Venice Biennial. She is also a Research Affiliate at the MIT Center for Civic Media.

Antero Garcia, Assistant Professor Colorado State University

Antero’s research focuses on developing critical literacies and civic identity through the use of mobile media and game play in formal learning environments. Antero was a teacher at a public high school in South Central Los Angeles and received his Ph.D. in the Urban Schooling division of the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. He was also a 2010–2011 U.S. Department of Education Teaching Ambassador Fellow, providing teacher input and feedback on national education policy initiatives and co-developed the Black Cloud Game, provoking students to take real time assessment of air quality in their community where students critically analyzed the role pollution played in their daily lives and presented recommendations to their community.

Ellen Middaugh, Senior Researcher with the Civic Engagement Research Group, Professor at Mills College and San Jose State University.

Ellen’s research focuses on how new media is changing the social context of adolescent development and the implications for educational practice. Current projects include studies of youth experiences with online conflict and research on the impact of classroom practices on students’ digital media literacy. She is co-editor of the forthcoming volume #youthaction: Becoming Political in the Digital Age. Recent publications (with Joseph Kahne) include New Media as a Tool for Civic Engagement (Communicar), Service and Activism in the Digital Age: Supporting Youth Engagement in Public Life; Youth Online Activity and Exposure to Diverse Perspectives (New Media and Society); Online Localities: Implications for Democracy and Education (NSSE Yearbook).

Moderated by The Engagement Lab

Eric Gordon, Director, Emerson Engagement Lab; Associate Professor, Department of Visual and Media Arts, Emerson College

Eric studies civic media and public engagement within the US and the developing world. He is specifically interested in the application of games and play in these contexts. In addition to being a researcher, he is also the designer of award winning “engagement games,” which are games that facilitate civic participation. He has served as an expert advisor for the UN Development Program, the International Red Cross / Red Crescent, the World Bank, as well as municipal governments throughout the United States. His edited volume (with Paul Mihailidis) entitled Civic Media: Technology, Design, Practice will be published by MIT Press** in 2016. He received his Ph.D. in 2003 from the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California.

Paul Mihailidis, Associate Director, Emerson Engagement Lab; Associate Professor, Department of Marketing Communication, Emerson College

Paul’s research focuses on the nexus of media, learning, and engagement in civic life. He has written and spoken extensively on the need for digital and media literacies as core constructs in the lives of young people. His new book, Media Literacy and the Emerging Citizen, outline effective practices for participatory citizenship and civic voices in digital culture. He is also the Editor of News Literacy: Global Perspectives for the Newsroom and the Classroom, and co-editor of Media Literacy Education in Action. Paul also directs the Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change, a network of young media makers from around the world who work collaboratively to build civic projects for global and social change.

The Project

Shy of about two months after it’s release, the Civic Media Project has received 20,000 views from around the world along with requests by civic education non-profits and teachers to adapt the learning guide. To read the case studies and explore the resources visit the site.

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