Recent news from the Center for Civic Media | MIT Center for Civic Media

Recent news from the Center for Civic Media

Sasha Costanza-Chock on move to MIT: "It's the most exciting possible place"

Sasha Costanza-ChockSasha Costanza-Chock is joining the faculty of the Comparative Media Studies program at MIT as Assistant Professor of Civic Media, and is one of the three principal investigators (along with Ethan Zuckerman and Mitchel Resnick) of the Center for Civic Media. He caught up with his new colleague Ethan Zuckerman to talk about his background and his plans at MIT.

"I'm a scholar and activist as well as a media maker," explains Costanza-Chock. "My scholarship has been based on engagement with the world of media activism and civic media more broadly." In his work at MIT, Costanza-Chock plans to continue straddling the line between action and reflection, building tools and systems to help communities express themselves and reflecting on the role of media in social movements.

This Week in Civic Media: MyDotTour highlights youth leadership in Dorchester

From the Center

My Dot Tour

  • @ReganStP: My Dot Tour kicks off today in Fields Corner - add your voice! @deptofplay @civicMIT @DotNews @DorchesterNews
  • Dorchester walking tour strengthening youth leadership skills


Hero Reports

  • Cronicas de Heroes moving toward bi-national rollout, creating hero reports along the U.S.-Mexican border
  • "Heroes in Juarez: Citizens Challenge a City’s Reputation"
  • @ernestopriego: Sobre Juárez, Hero Reports y @civicMIT: #vocesmx #SinLugar

Digital Signage in Union Square, Somerville


For the past seven months the Center for Civic Media has advised on a campaign of positive thinking in Cd. Juárez, Mexico: CRÓNICAS DE HÉROES.

The blog post "Cd. Juárez, Mex, CRONICAS DE HEROES OTRA CARA, OTRA HISTORIA", summarizes to a great extent the development of this initiative in that city. Looking back it has been especially interesting for the CRÓNICAS team to see how a web-based project has become a mixture of mechanisms, in which social contacts and active procedures have been reflected both online and on daily participation.

Currently, CRÓNICAS DE HÉROES is exploring new terrain, planning on launching bi-national implementations along the U.S-Mexican border, striving to unite sister pair cities in these regions. Thanks to the positive development and base that CRÓNICAS DE HÉROES in Cd. Juárez has given us, now is possible to plan for a new approach.

Data Therapy Workshop Followup

As part of our Data Therapy project, we just ran two workshops to help build capacity within small community organizations to understand and creatively present their data. We were able to accommodate about 25 people in our training space, and hope to help more of those that were on the waitlist in the future. These workshops were run in collaboration with the Regional Center for Healthy Communities, whose training needs assessment has spurred these workshops and where I've run them for the last few years. This blog post includes some follow-up information for attendees to those workshops, but may be interesting for other people too!

For those of you that did attend, here are some references for the tools and ideas that we talked about.

Zeega: an interactive documentary platform

I had the opportunity recently to speak with Jesse Shapins of MetaLAB at Harvard, co-founder of Zeega, a new platform for creating interactive documentaries and inventing new forms of storytelling. As the Zeega team have just been named a Knight News Challenge winner, I thought it would be nice to get a better sense of their innovative platform and what they're planning for the fall.


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