A round-up of documentation re: community co-ownership and collaboration in tech, governance, and public life.

This page is a work in progress. In addition to these content updates, you can expect revised structures for examining what’s already present. I’ll mark updates as they come.

If you’d like to submit research, resources, publications, blog posts, etc fore review and inclusion, hit me up on email over here or on Twitter here.


  • Digital Justice Principles (Detroit Digital Justice Coalition)
    • manifesto and guidestar of just, inclusive technology for the common good
  • The Myth of Everybody (Laurenellen McCann)
    • Medium, 7/31/2014
    • the difference between “with” and “for” in civic work, and civic tech in particular
  • Why I Am Not A Maker (Debbie Chachra)
    • The Atlantic, 1/23/2015
    • essential material for reflection re: inclusivity and exclusivity in the framing of identities associated with (and lauded in) the tech community; how do the assumptions Chachra identifies impact your collaboration style and design?
  • The Problem With Inclusion (Laurenellen McCann)
    • & Medium, 7/2015
    • “inclusion” is inherently about exclusion. a look at what we see and what it means for diversity and community involvement (in any field) when we shift our focus from inclusion at the ends to fighting exclusion from the start.



  • State of the Science: Implicit Bias Review 2015 (Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity)
    • Kirwan Institute, 10/6/2014
    • an annual review of the latest research and developments in the study of implicit bias, and its effects


  • Who Benefits from Civic Technology? (Rebecca Rumbul)
    • mysociety, October 2015
    • a multi-country study of the users of civic technologies; importantly, the findings for the US are that the users in the US and UK resemble our dominant political classes: older white, male, affluent, well-educated, and digitally connected; remind me against about that diverse “revolution” pothole apps are going to bring?



  • Getting In On The Act (Alan S. Brown, Jennifer L. Novak-Leonard, with Shelly Gilbride)
    • Irvine Foundation, 10/2011
    • essential study on participation and engagement strategies used in the arts, geared by intentionality in the level of community involvement, with huge lessons and applicability for co-design in tech & policy-making
  • Low Power to the People (Christina Dunbar-Hester)
    • MIT Press, 10/2014
    • historical and tactical study of the Prometheus Radio Project and their work with communities and advocacy re: community radio, media justice, and low-power FM
  • Guide to Digital Literacy (Detroit Future Media)
    • Allied Media Projects, 6/21/2014
    • reflections and resources from three years of media-based organizing for community revitalization through the Detroit Future Media program
  • Invitation to the Party (Donna Walker-Kuhne)
    • Theatre Communications Group, 2005
    • essential strategic reading on prioritizing diversity and what it means to build meaningful, smart communities around content, from the experience of traditional theatrical institutions; only discovered this recently and it’s been a HUGE influence on my thinking and writing


  • [Briefing Note for Welsh Government] Community Democratic Governance: Evidence Synthesis and Advice (Tony Bovaird)
    • Institute of Local Government Studies, 10/2014
    • superb review of policy, public life (!), and implementation considerations of sharing governing responsibilities with citizens, with case studies from a number of international contexts


Hitting pause on updating this section in order to fill out a full page. Got ideas/suggestions for articles or resources that help folks put “build with” into action? Email me.

  • The CUTGroup Book (Dan O’Neil)
    • Smart Chicago Collaborative, 2014
    • new model of UX Testing, digital skills development, and community engagement in civic tech, with detailed documentation for replication and testing in your community
  • Active Listening 101 (Laurenellen McCann)
    • Smart Chicago Collaborative, 4/22/2015
    • easy communication exercise to help practitioners document and speak about their work to people of different contexts and backgrounds
  • Commotion Construction Kit (Open Technology Institute)
    • Commotion, 2011
    • set of documentation tools/“do it ourselves” guide to building wireless mesh networks


  • The User is Not Like Me (Whitney Hess)
    •, 5/4/2012
    • reflection on the role of perspective in human-centered design
  • Design, When Everybody Designs (Ezio Manzini)
    • MIT Press, 2/2015
    • international studies at modern co-design v. “expert” design; since the frame is design in the context of “social innovation”, it’s also a great check on the false line between current “civic” and “social” development