Sarah Wagner has contributed with a chapter in the newly released book “Mobile participation: Access, interaction and practices“, edited by Caroline Wamala-Larsson, Christelle Scharff, and Johan Hellström, and published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
Overview of the book
This volume brings together papers from academics and practitioners on specific issues related to mobile participation in the context of development, originally presented at the fourth conference on Mobile Communications for Development (M4D 2014). M4D research focuses on understanding the use of mobile technologies and services, and how they directly or indirectly address socio-economic challenges. In development, participation suggests that stakeholders can partake in the processes that will benefit them, and this concept has been much-studied by scholars who sought to understand its meaning and contribution to development. Mobile participation, on the other hand, has not received as much scholarly attention.
The core question the book addresses is: In what ways do mobile technologies enable, enhance, and perhaps even effect, civic participation in everyday life? The contributions to this collection provide empirical evidence and further analyses of the opportunities and limitations of what this book refers to as mobile participation in development in areas ranging from literacy, health, media production and digital inclusion to governance (water management), as well as privacy. They show that simpler devices such as basic phones offer higher degrees of participation, depending on the existing infrastructure and the social frameworks within which the technologies are employed.