Abstract - The Information Society 19(5)

SPECIAL ISSUE: ICTs and Community Networking

Community Technology and Community Building: Early Results from the Creating Community Connections Project

Randal Pinkett


As community technology and community building initiatives move toward greater synergy, there is a great deal to be learned regarding how they can be mutually supportive, rather than mutually exclusive. This paper sheds light on the possibilities inhered at this nexus. The project that constitutes the basis for this paper is the Camfield Estates-MIT Creating Community Connections Project, an ongoing effort at Camfield Estates, a predominantly African-American, low- to moderate-income housing development. As part of this project, we worked with residents to establish a technological infrastructure by offering every family a new computer, software, high-speed Internet connection, comprehensive courses, and a web-based, community building system, the Creating Community Connections (C3) System, that I co-designed with residents. This paper presents an overview of the Camfield Estates-MIT project, theoretical framework developed in relation to this work, research design and methodology, project methodology and timeline, and early results. It concludes with a set of recommendations for the community technology and community building movements.

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