Society for the Social Study of Mobile Communications

The Society for the Social Study of Mobile Communication (SSSMC) is intended to facilitate the international advancement of cross-disciplinary mobile communication studies. It is intended to serve as a resource and to support a network of scholarly research as to the social consequences of mobile communication.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

CFP: Conference for E-Democracy and Open Government CeDEM 2015

Conference for E-Democracy and Open Government CeDEM 2015 Call for Papers
20-22 May 2015

The international Conference for e-Democracy and Open Government (CeDEM) brings together e-democracy, e-participation and open government specialists working in academia, politics, government and business to critically analyse the innovations, issues, ideas and challenges in the networked societies of the digital age.

The Centre for E-Governance at the Danube University Krems has been organising conferences on e-democracy and public administration since 2007: the E-democracy Conferences began in 2007, and the CeDEM, first presented in 2011, represents the development and continuation of the conference series. The CeDEM is also held biennially inAsia.

Papers are peer-reviewed in a double-blind process and, if accepted, published in the conference proceedings and are also available online according to Open Access principles. Workshops proposals, PhD colloquium papers and reflections that have been submitted and selected by the chairs are also published in the paper and online proceedings. Authors of the best peer-reviewed papers will be asked to re-submit their revised and extended papers for the autumn issue of the Centre for E-Governance’s Open Access eJournal of eDemocracy and Open Government (

Since 2014, the CeDEM conference presents the author/s of the best paper with the “CeDEM Best Paper Award”. Papers are nominated for this award by the reviewers during the peer-review process, the best paper is then selected by the CeDEM’s track directors.

The CeDEM offers a PhD Colloquium in cooperation with the Danube University Krems’ Platform for Political Communication and netPOL ( The PhD Colloquium provides PhD students the opportunity to present their work and gain feedback from experts as well as meet other PhD students. Students from any stage of their PhD are invited to submit their work and invited to apply for the “CeDEM PhD Colloquium Grant”.

The CeDEM also provides an Open Space, where participants can democratically choose and organise in a barcamp style their own presentations, workshops, birds of a feather, events, meetings etc..

Important Dates
  • Deadline for the submission of full papers, workshop proposals, reflections: 8 December 2014
  • Notification of acceptance: 9 February 2015
  • Camera-ready paper submission: 2 March 2015
  • Conference: 20-22 May 2015

We invite individuals from academic and applied backgrounds as well as business, public authorities, NGOs, NPOs and education institutions to submit papers, reflections as well as workshop proposals to the topics addressed in the tracks. We welcome interdisciplinary approaches to the conference topics.
  • Research papers: 12 pages maximum (double-blind peer-reviewed);
  • Case studies/Project papers: 12 pages maximum (double-blind peer-reviewed);
  • Reflections: 6 pages maximum (selected by the chairs);
  • Workshops: 4 pages maximum (selected by the chairs);
  • PhD Colloquium papers: 3 pages maximum (excluding literature list; selected by the track directors of the colloquium);

Conference Chairs
Noella Edelmann & Peter Parycek (Danube University Krems, AT)

CeDEM15 Tracks

Track: E-Democracy and E-Participation
Chairs: Elin Wihlborg (Linköping University, SE), Mauri Kaipainen (Södertörn University, SE),
The explosion of social media is fuelling new and unanticipated directions in e-democracy and e-participation - from increased pressure for direct democracy through to new drives to engage citizens in service and/or policy co-design, co-delivery and co-evaluation. This session will explore the latest trends and ongoing challenges facing this evolving field, trying to outline the emerging traits of a new model of inclusive e-governance for local/territorial and global/virtual communities. We welcome papers presenting case studies and papers with a more theoretical focus, but encourage in particular authors to combine them for challenges analyses and elaborations on further developments. Typical issues might be, but are not limited to:
  • Sustainability of e-participation and citizen engagement; best practices and key factors for success; motivational factors and the impact of participation;
  • Participatory and communication platforms; ICT for e-participation; mobile media and new forms of participation; applications for citizens;
  • Citizens and government interaction, business and government interaction; different perspectives held by citizens, government, NGOs, NPOs, practitioners, service providers;
  • Citizen inclusion and digital divide: gender, age, education, etc.;
  • New approaches to direct democracy, new forms of democracy enhanced by ICT;
  • Inclusive e-governance in the context of Regional Smart Specialisation;
  • Living Labs and Social Innovation;
  • E-participation and cooperation for development;
  • Business and e-participation;
  • Critical perspectives: wrongdoings, bad and worst experiences, hype but not reality, fringe groups;

Track: E-Voting
Chairs: Damian MacNamara (Dundalk Institute of Technology, IE)
Exploring a holistic approach to eVoting. Specifically, we aim to explore eVoting issues, gather perspectives and present practical solutions. Discussion of emerging technologies and their application to eVoting (kiosk and remote), often following outside-of-the-box thinking are particularly welcome:
  • Discussion of all forms of electronic voting: including, but not limited to, polling station, kiosk or remote voting by electronic means;
  • Interdisciplinary issues (e.g.  technology, law, politics and society) in the design and implementation of e-voting;
  • Presenting new ways of solving the voting paradigm: the unequivocal identification of the voter and the full anonymity of the vote;
  • Implementations, their legal, organisational and technical framework, project experiences;
  • Analysis of the interrelationship between the effects of e-voting on democratic institutions, processes and voter behaviour;
  • Conducting social and political analysis on the effects of electronic voting;
  • Practical experiences in implementing and conducting elections with electronic voting parts;
  • Discussion of security requirements and testing in accordance to international security standards i.e. Common Criteria or ITSEC;
  • Evaluation of e-voting: the effects and how to evaluate experiments;
  • Future trends;
  • Usability of e-voting: user interface evaluation and criteria for usability scales.

Track: Bottom-Up Movements
Chairs: Judith Schossböck (Danube University Krems, AT), Jakob Svensson (Uppsala University, SE)
Bottom-up, grassroot and social movements are increasingly using ICT and the internet to mobilise and coordinate their activities. This track looks at how new media facilitates, contrains, affords and influences
those movements, with particular view to collective action, peer production and new forms of activism in a networked society.
  • Online communities, innovation, bottom-up vs. top-down;
  • NGOs/NPOs in a connected society;
  • Online spaces for self-organisation and citizen engagement;
  • User generated content, peer production;
  • ICT and the revolutions: who are the good and the bad? The role of journalism, alternative media and the counter-public sphere;
  • Online activism, grassroots and their organization;
  • What happens after the online revolutions?

Track: Social and Mobile Media for Public Administration
Chairs: Morten Meyerhoff Nielsen (Danish Agency for Digitisation, DK), Peter Mambrey (University of Duisburg-Essen, DE)
Social Media integrate Web 2.0 technologies, content creation, and social interaction in the domain of Public Administration. It fosters innovations within the Public Administration to gain organizational benefits (reducing transaction costs, efficient dissemination, cooperative and cross-organizational work etc.) as well as communication and interaction towards the citizens (crowd sourcing including citizens, participatory budgeting, new online services, information campaigning etc.)
  • Social media and social networks in public administration and government: practical experiences, theoretical approaches, legal frameworks: country reports;
  • Information provision, new services, service delivery, and service quality;
  • Social media platforms and applications to foster the interaction between public administration and citizens: e-consultation, participatory budgeting, participatory city planning, online petitions;
  • Inclusion, accessibility, legal obstacles, do’s and don’ts, transparency and control: exploring the opportunities, risks and challenges of social media platforms and applications in the public administration.

Track: Open Collaborative Government
Chairs: Sylvia Archmann (EIPA, NL), Reinhard Riedl (Bern University of Applied Sciences, CH)
Collaboration across organizational boundaries can significantly increase the quality, the efficacy, and also the efficiency of government. However, it also faces many hindrances. In some situations the organizational reality reads "My agency is my castle". Particular objections exist against collaboration across different levels of government, and even more against collaboration between government and civil society or between government and industry. We are interested in research papers, which study the problems, present case studies, design innovation solutions, identify success and failure factors, or provide overviews of existing research results. Papers should highlight the role of information and communication technology, but they should equally discuss political, organizational, and/or cultural aspects.
Topics of interests include, but are not limited to:
  • Innovative collaboration platforms and tools;
  • The use of social media, collaboration, or decision making tools;
  • The implementation of cross-organizational collaboration or decision making processes;
  • Informal or formal collaboration between government and civil society, PPPs (private-public-partnerships), shared funding, etc.;
  • Evaluation methods for collaboration initiatives;
  • Success or failure criteria, empirical observations of success;

Track: Democracy, Globalization and Migration
Chairs: n.n.
This track focuses on democracies and democratic processes in an increasingly globalized world, clearly characterized by international migration. The following topics refer to different aspects of the complex interrelationships between democracy, globalization and migration being covered in this track:
  • Globalization and its impact on democracies and democratic processes
  • Impact of migration on democracies and democratic structures;
  • Metropolisation and democracies;
  • Transformation of political decision-making in a globalized world;
  • New political instruments in transnational settings (e.g. Open Method of Coordination);
  • Role of social media, e-participation, e-government for globalization and migration;
  • Migration and political participation in a globalized world;
  • The role of new media for democratic processes and political participation (e.g. „Arab Spring“ and the rise of democratic structures via Facebook);
  • Role of citizenship for globalization and migration processes;
  • Migration, globalization and the rise of nationalistic political movements;
  • Asylum, democracy and human rights;
  • Globalization and new media;

Track: Connected Smart City
Chair: Carolin Schröder (Technical University Berlin, DE), Julia Glidden (21c Consultancy UK), Norbert Kersting (University of Münster, DE)
This track provides a platform for the various living labs, initiatives and projects that work on or with concepts of "Smart Cities". It aims at sharing experiences as well as test results and to further investigate relations of innovative technologies and democratic societies.
Contributions are especially appreciated on the following topics: 
  • Becoming a smart city: Best practices, failures & practical challenges;
  • Successful technologies for encouraging citizen participation;
  • Successful technologies for integrating all dimensions of human, collective, and artificial intelligence within the city;
  • Smartness vs. Openness? Open data & Big data, Usability & Accessability, the internet of things and co-production;
  • Do smart cities need smart people? Relations of innovative technologies, democratic societies & concepts of "Smartness";

Track: Open Data, Transparency and Open Innovation
Chairs: Johann Höchtl (Danube University Krems, AT), Anneke Zuiderwijk (TU Delft, NL), Maximilian Heimstädt (Free University Berlin, DE)
Open data can provide a platform for many forms of democratic engagement: from enabling citizen scrutiny of governments, to supporting co-production of public data and services, or the emergence of innovative solutions to shared problems. This track will explore the opportunities and challenges for open data production, quality assurance, supply and use across different levels of governance. Key themes include:
  • Open data policy and politics: opportunities and challenges for governments; the global spread of open data policy; transparency and accountability, economic innovation, drivers for open data; benefits and challenges for developing countries
  • Licensing and legal issues: copyright vs. open licenses & creative commons; Freedom of Information and the ‘right to data’; information sharing and privacy.
  • Open data technologies: technical frameworks for data and meta-data; mash-ups; data formats, standards and APIs; integration into backend systems; data visualisation; data end-users and intermediaries;
  • Open innovation and co-production: open data enabled models of public service provision; government as a platform; making open data innovation sustainable; data and democracy; connecting open data and crowdsourcing; data and information literacy;
  • Evidence and impacts: costs and benefits of providing or using open data; emerging good practices; methods for open data research; empirical data measuring open data impacts.
  • Open data as a social movement: How can the global trend towards open data be conceptualized as a form of collective action? How do challengers and incumbents organize and change? How is the data branch embedded in the field of open movements?

Track: Technology and Architecture
Chairs: Vasily Bunakov (STFC Scientific Computing, UK), Keith Jeffery (Keith G Jeffery Consultants, UK), Maria Nikolova (New Bulgarian University, BG)
In the open government / democracy arena, the technology determines what is possible towards meeting the requirements and expectations of end-users. The technology provides capability for the end-user to find data, use data and publish data. It also provides capabilities for inter-user communication, discussion, decision-making and participation. The architecture ensures that the technology conforms to an overall plan so making it comfortable for the end-use to utilise across various purposes that users may have. The use cases and the evaluation of technology application provide justification for new technological developments as drivers of social change. Key themes of this track include:
  • Various technical issues and new technological developments; use cases for technology application;
  • Rights management, information law and relevant business models for operating technical solutions;
  • Information and knowledge modelling, standards and specifications that enable sensible information sharing, interpretation and use by citizens, governments and other parties;
  • Information management policies, business cases and architectures for the release of governmental, archival, cultural heritage, research and other public sector information in public domain;
  • Release of business information that is of a public interest (consumer behaviour, economical projections etc.): policy making and technical solutions for it;
  • How the technology or proposed system assists the end-users to meet their needs, enable their actions, or bring their attention to new ideas.

Track: Self-governance in Complex Networks
Chair: Josef Hörmandinger (Salzburger Landtag, AT)
Dirk Baeker and his model of media development as applied to the media and means of governance reach from the rule of law via social market economy to societal self-governance in the smart crowd. The prior medium is not outdated and disappears, but continues to exist and takes up the function of a support-pillar for thenew medium to work.
  • The function of "power" (Luhmann) vs. emergent decision making in the Democracy (McCarthy/Saitta);
  • Integration of "micro contributions" in the sense of "dialogue" (Vilém Flusser) into governance processes;
  • Integrating decisions made by society into the democratic process, e.g. balancing the call for more participation with the call for true representation in parliaments (participation-representation dichotomy), investigating new models of representation (Liquid D. Systemic Consenting) for their integrative potential;
  • How to make decision-making in nonlinear emergent systems society) smart AND legitimized;
  • "Feed-back-loops", within Viable Systems (Stafford Beer), their recurrence, contribution and meaning to the emergence of systems and the self-organization of society and political systems in the sense of "The Cybernetic State" (Javier Livas-Cantú);

Track: Rethinking Information Visualization for the People
Chairs: Michael Smuc (Danube University Krems, AT), Florian Windhager (Danube University Krems, AT)
From its early days to its current mass application as statistical charts or interactive infographics, information visualization has been striving for academic elaboration and the broadening of its target audiences. With specific regard to both of these aspects, the track is looking for contributions where information visualization meets political data and content in the public communication domain. Submissions may focus on case studies, evaluations, as well as conceptual or theoretical contributions on translational work between these fields (cf. Danziger, 2008; Zambrano & Engelhardt, 2008);
  • Optimization of representations to provide insights into complex subject matters;
  • Non-expert audiences, casual infovis contexts and strategies for visual literacy development;
  • Transparency of design choices for visual representations (cf. Doerk et al, 2013)
  • Developments in the emerging field of data journalism or other public communication domains;

Track: Freedom and Ethics in Digital Societies
Chair: Peter Kampits (Danube University Krems)
The promise of freedom of the internet has been broken by the public authorities. For quite a while the “internet” has not been taken seriously, because the consequences of its use have been regarded as harmless. The internet has now definitely stepped out from this harmless position. This track takes a closer look at the problem of security and freedom in the internet from an ethical point of view.
  • Technology and responsibility: rational technology assessment;
  • Internet: the enlargement or the illusion of freedom;
  • The power of the internet;
  • The disappearance of reality in the cyberspace;
  • Knowledge versus information;
  • From homo sapiens to homo digitalis;

Track: Design and Co-Creation for E-Democracy
Chairs: Bert Mulder (The Hague University of Applied Sciences, NL), Martijn Hartog (The Hague University of Applied Sciences, NL), Fiorella De Cindio (University of Milan, IT), Montathar Faraon (Södertörn University, SE)
Digital solutions for e-democracy have been developing for two decades. Although currently e-democratic solutions are often incidental, ad hoc and project based, it may be assumed that they will become pervasive with the on-going adoption of the Internet by citizens and governments. A functional e-democracy will not be supported by a single digital solution, but rather by a large number of difference e-democratic platforms and solutions. What is the character of such an ‘ecology’ of digital democratic solutions? What are its requirements and its architecture?
With growing adoption of e-democratic solutions the quality of design, the design process and the designer becomes a concern. Although several authors have been writing about design and democracy (notable Sclove and Bonsieppe) current developments requires wider attention and a more structural treatment. Are current design methods appropriate for all situations? Should designers of democratic solutions have a good context of the domain before designing their solutions? What are the competencies designers need when designing for democracy?
This track invites scientific authors, practitioners and professionals designers / developers to reflect on the strategic role of design for (e-)democracy by discussing design theories and methods for co-creation and e-democratic solutions:
  • Design theories, methods and frameworks for e-democracy and e-governance;
  • Designing qualities, processes and criteria;
  • Challenges of participatory and co-design;
  • The necessity of new competences for designers;

Track: Citizens’ Participation in Democratic Governance Processes through ICT in Africa
Chairs: Günther Schefbeck (Austrian Parliament, AT), Johnstone Baguma – Kumaraki (Toro Development Network, UG), Wilfred Warioba (Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance, TZ)
Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) offer concrete opportunities for local and national governments to improve their performance in terms of transparency, participation and decentralization (Guchteneire and Mlikota, 2008). Many other scholars globally, have echoed related statements previously. However, the greatest challenge is that many are anecdotal and coming across empirical case studies to support such conclusions becomes difficult. For instance, this track will present evidence-based experiences of ICT-enabled, citizen-led democratic engagements for good governance in the Eastern and Southern African regions. The track will provide more normative than positive knowledge to practitioners, public sector, service providers and academic researchers. With comparison to other initiatives in Africa and the developing world, submissions should focus, for example, on:
  • How simple, affordable, and cost effective ICT tools are used to activate and facilitate local citizens’ participation in governance issues;
  • Electronic virtual platforms for citizens’ participation and  e-participation;
  • Model discussions of how local citizens’-led advocacy forums, Voluntary Social Accountability Committees (VSACs), human rights networks and other initiatives in the region are using these platforms;
  • Initiatives that use the ICT tools convergence approach, that combine online social, broadcast media and mobile technology to mobilize local citizens for offline physical meetings, to democratically engage local and central government leaders;
  • Improving accountability for essential service delivery at the grassroot level;

Track: Open Access
Chair: Federico Morando (Nexa Center for Internet & Society, IT), n.n.
Open Access is a concept that applies to both scientific publications and other entities, including related scientific data, that are freely accessible and reusable. The Berlin Declaration, one of the milestones of the Open Access movement, states that Open Access contributions must satisfy two conditions: that “(...) a free, irrevocable, worldwide, right of access to, and a license to copy, use, distribute, transmit and display the work publicly and to make and distribute derivative works (...)” is granted by the author(s) and rights holder(s) of such contributions and that “A complete version of the work and all supplemental materials, including a copy of the permission as stated above, in an appropriate standard electronic format is deposited (and thus published) in at least one online repository using suitable technical standards (...)” supported by institutions that seek to enable “open access, unrestricted distribution, interoperability, and long-term archiving”.
The track welcomes any innovative contribution concerning Open Access. The focus of the track, however, is on emerging models grounded on
cooperation, defragmentation of resources, knowledge sharing and non-rivalrous reuse of significant amounts of content, with the aim of paving the path toward the idea of a “networked science”. In particular, the track  welcomes papers on:
  • Robust methodologies that are able to provide empirical evidence about the benefits of Open Access;
  • Proposals concerning the use of open access repositories for innovative purposes, such as new forms of research assessment and evaluation;
  • Open scientific data, i.e., scientific data whose usage is unrestricted, or placed under use terms that guarantee the free access and reuse of data, possibly with some constraints on legal and ethical grounds (combining the Open Access and Open Data paradigms).

PhD Colloquium
Chairs: Peter Parycek (Danube University Krems, AT), Christina Hainzl (Danube University Krems, AT)
The CeDEM offers a PhD Colloquium in cooperation with the Danube University Krems’ Platform for Political Communication and netPOL ( The Doctoral Colloquium provides PhD students the opportunity
to present their work and gain feedback from experts as well as meet other PhD students. Students from any stage of their PhD are invited to submit their work in relation to any of the conference topics.
PhD students can apply for a bursary.