Workshop on

Residents' Democratic Engagement
in Public Housing and Urban Areas:
Challenges and Potentials for ICT

Aarhus, Denmark, Monday 17 August 2015.

EXTENDED Deadline for submission: 22 May

In conjunction with Aarhus 2015

About the Workshop

The workshop aims to bring together perspectives on residents' engagement and influence in the development of their housing estates and housing areas, and to explore experiences challenges and potentials for the use of ICT in this context.

Public housing around the world is organized differently, and in particular the models for residents influence have radically different forms. In Denmark residents are at the same time landlords and tenants, but are subject to strong legal and municipal regulation. In Sweden residents are organized in a strong union of tenants and have acquired wide rights to be consulted in important cases. In many other countries, residents in public housing projects have no influence at all, unless they organize specific campaign. Residents' engagement depends on a lot of different circumstances, cultures, and conditions. If residents live in an estate because they did not have any other options their engagement may be weak. We do not expect that engagement is fundamentally different through social media than in actual everyday encounters, but we find it interesting to explore how ICT can break barriers, constitute new forms of engagement etc.

The workshop will explore the challenges in the continued development of local democratic action, and the potentials and limitations of ICT based solutions in that context. Similarly, residents (citizens) democratic influence on housing conditions and regulations in general on community and national level, supported by ICT, will be explored. The workshop will have a specific focus on housing to enable specific and detailed discussion, but will aim at a broader long-term impact.

Participants in the workshop will submit position papers that will be circulate in advance. In the morning we explore a number of basic (legal etc.) structures for residents' involvement, together with current issues that residents' engagement faces around the world. In the afternoon we explore how ICT can reduce exclusion, enhance engagement and influence, and support creative action in the continuous co-creation of surroundings for good life.

Call for papers

We invite (position) papers from people interested or concerned with democratic engagement in public housing; and information and communication technologies in that context. Potential participants may come from academia, NGO's, housing organizations, technology providers, etc. They may be professionals, researchers, activists or something else.

Papers gives participants an opportunity to share insights into the field, empirical results, experiments, theoretical accounts, etc., related to democratic engagement and ICT. We do expect papers typically to present work in progress.

We are particularly interested in submissions that:

  • Report on challenges to democratic engagement in public housing (empirical or otherwise based), relative to specific national systems, or
  • Report on experiments with new forms of participation ‐ possibly mediated through technology, or
  • Present technological platforms representing new approaches to democratic engagement, or
  • Report on design projects in this context.

Papers can be up to 4 pages long formatted according to the ACM/SIGCHI double column publication format (, and should be submitted in PDF format.

To submit the paper please go to our submission page at Easychair:
Please direct questions about paper submissions to:

All submissions will be reviewed by the workshop organizers.

Important dates

Deadline for submission: 22 May
(If you submit an abstract by May 22, you can wait and submit the actual paper til May 26)
Notification of acceptance/rejection: 7 June.
Camera-ready vesion of papers due: 22 June.
Deadline for early registration to the conference: 25 June.


Olav W. Bertelsen and Henrik Korsgaard, AU;
Konrad Tollmar and Yngve Sundblad KTH;
Carolin Schröder, TU-Berlin;
Ingrid Kuhn, Liquid Democracy.

More information about the Aarhus 2015 conference can befound at

Last update: 22. June, 2015