When does technology improve communities? When doesn’t it, and why? How can you improve your chance of having a positive long-term impact on communities? How is designing technology for communities different from designing technology for consumers?
Ellen Zegura works with community groups in the Westside of Atlanta on projects that combine data and neighborhood improvement efforts. She also conducts research in partnership with Native American tribes in the United States southeast with a focus on Internet accessibility and community-generated content. She teaches SLS 3110, Technology and Sustainable Community Development, a course concerned with the strengths and limitations of technology in the creation and growth of sustainable communities.
The purpose of this course is to research and develop information, communication, and media systems to address regional civic issues, using techniques from design, computing, and social sciences, in collaboration with government and community partners.
Students work in teams on projects that come from external partners. These partner organizations generally work on pressing social problems and provide services to communities and individuals in need.
This course has a GT designation so students in any major can count it towards free electives, and it is additionally cross listed with CS, ARCH and PUBP.