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Civic Wave
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5/2019

Civic Wave

Raising awareness of government processes by making digital civic
and political culture tangible

The concept focuses on the materialisation of digital civic energy, derived from social media activities and made tangible through the medium of kinetic structures. The outcome intends to provoke a discussion about the potential of Kinetic Information Architecture in fostering social sustainability; moreover, the project explores the possibility of facilitating civic engagement by giving new meaning to existing architectural infrastructures.

The outcome is a kinetic sculpture which aims to tackle the unawareness of opportunities for public participation in government decision-making. It translates tweets that are contextually relevant to open consultations within the London Assembly into a dynamic wave which changes its amplitude according to the quantity of tweets within a certain timeframe, thus resembling a materialisation of digital civic culture.

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Re-imagining
government systems

The network of government institutions, their responsibilities and their influence on citizens – but also the agency of citizens in this complex system – is hard to mentally visualise. Although this project started with using galaxies as a metaphor for government systems in order to spark curiosity and wonder, more inspiration came from the philosophical concept of cosmopolitics in which all entities influence each other ('ecologies of relation'). It was in particular the notion of community and reciprocity which led to the focus on conveying civic engagement by using the metaphor of ripples and waves.