JoCI Textbook

The Journal of Community Informatics eTextbook began as a collaboration with the primary co-editors of the Journal who, in the summer of 2009, proposed to the editorial board a JoCI textbook in a traditional hardcopy format, complete with sections and selections.  Some posts in response suggesting changes, preferences, and material to add led me to imagine and suggest that the best approach here — and if it were approproprate for anyone, it would surely be for the Journal of Community Informatics — would be to have an online electronic textbook, an e-textbook that could be customized for the occasion.  Coincidentally, with my dissertation completion prospectus having just been accepted, such a project would provide me with an approach to presenting some of the material I had thought about using to teach about CTCs and telecentres and also serve as an exemplary additional chapter for the textbook exemplifying how it could be customized.

Through much of the fall into November I developed, in consultation with the other editors, an approach and web site for the proposed basic text, a preliminary FAQ and a customization guide including notes on special themes, some outlines of a financial plan for how funds could be collected and used to support JoCI, how the editorial board could be involved and participate, provide a certain amount of pro bono advice to teachers and other textbook users as well as some guidelines for sharing revenues for doing so.  Shortly before this was to be unveiled / posted to the editorial board for review and comment, the project was suspended.

Although the project did not go forward, it did provide me with an opportunity to complete a key chapter of my dissertation (as well as an Epilogue about e-textbook possibilities), one that I have been able to update and build upon, as per the overview of my activities since then. In addition, the JoCI eTextbook remains, I believe, a provocative possibility for making a useful contribution to Community Informatics education.


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