Power, Communities, and Community Informatics: a meta-study

  • Michael V Arnold
  • Larry Stillman Monash University
Keywords: Power, empowerment, social-technical theory, community informatics theory



In this paper we tackle the theme of power in the context of communities and Community Informatics through addressing five questions.


  1. What is power?
  2. What is empowerment?
  3. In what ways is it exercised?
  4. How does all of this pertain to communities?
  5. How does all of this pertain to Community Informatics?


The first three questions are addressed through reference to well known propositions drawn from social theory, and having established this background, the last two questions are foregrounded through a content analysis meta-study of the abstracts of papers submitted to the 2009 Prato Community Informatics Conference. The overarching theme of this conference was power and empowerment in community informatics.


How to Cite
Arnold, M., & Stillman, L. (2012). Power, Communities, and Community Informatics: a meta-study. The Journal of Community Informatics, 9(1). Retrieved from http://ci-journal.net/index.php/ciej/article/view/577