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Terence D. Gibson. (2010). It's not just the data: Participatory monitoring and the most significant change. In C. Zobel B. T. S. French (Ed.), ISCRAM 2010 – 7th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management: Defining Crisis Management 3.0, Proceedings. Seattle, WA: Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management, ISCRAM.
Abstract: Overlaying the technical aspects of participative communications and network design is the question 'how they can secure social change?' Social change is a political act. How can transnational networks gain political influence for local groupings at the national and international level? The Global Network for Disaster Reduction has undertaken a large scale 'participatory monitoring' project with the intended aim of using an activist 'social network' to create 'social demand': influencing policy and implementation within the UN.s framework for disaster reduction. While the project achieved its intended goals, the unintended impacts of the project are argued to be at least as significant; revealing ways that networks can create 'political space' at the local level which can influence policy and access to resources at the national and international level. This paper is presented from a practitioner perspective, linking practice to theoretical work on transnational social movements and participative communications.