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Understanding the demographics of the crowd: mapping the role of the participant in crisis informatics
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Computer and Systems Sciences. The International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis, IIASA, Austria.
2017 (English)In: Proceedings of the Internationsl Conference on Electronic Governance and Open Society: Challenges in Eurasia, Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 2017, p. 160-165Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Digital differences constitute a significant problem when it comes to the use of social media in crisis management. There is a lack of systematic strategies and theories for understanding and handling differences, which significantly delimits the effectiveness of humanitarian response in all phases of a crisis. Consequently, we must better understand the broader communication settings and in particular how different applications and methods can enable an understanding of the demographics of social media contributors and users.

In this article, we provide an overview and an analysis of the description of the participant in crisis informatics against this background. We also suggest a taxonomy to capture discourses about the role of the participant in the communication situation. This methodology is applied on research in the field of crisis informatics to identify some aspects on how the problem with unequal data production is addressed in this field.

The results show that participants often are described in terms of roles defined by action such as "police" or "first responder". When it comes to participants' different situated perspectives, i.e., whether the participants have on site experience or are reporting from a particular locality, disability is to some extent acknowledged, while differences between participants such as age, gender, and socio-economic factors, are not taken into account at all. Overall participants are seen as a homogenous crowd from where data is extracted.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 2017. p. 160-165
Keywords [en]
Digital inequality, digital differentiation, crisis sense making, e-participation, crisis informatics
National Category
Information Systems
Research subject
Computer and Systems Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-150254DOI: 10.1145/3129757.3129784ISBN: 978-1-4503-5412-7 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-150254DiVA, id: diva2:1166047
Conference
Internationsl Conference on Electronic Governance and Open Society: Challenges in Eurasia, St. Petersburg, Russia, September 04 - 06, 2017
Available from: 2017-12-14 Created: 2017-12-14 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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Output format
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