Sunday, July 07, 2013

Mapping Chicago Violence. Engaging Community.

Today's Chicago Tribune devoted the front page and two full inside pages on a story showing the impact of shootings in Chicago. Included was an interactive map at that you can click on to understand the number of people shot in Chicago in the first six months of 2013 - 1,043.

I created a map story in April 2013, showing the areas of Chicago targeted for new corporate philanthropy, along with a map from the Tutor/Mentor Program Locator, showing areas of poverty and poorly performing schools. The goal was to engage people in strategies that provided on-going funds for youth mentoring, tutoring, learning and jobs programs in all of the neighborhoods shown on the map to be areas of need.

I updated that map today with the map from the Chicago Tribune site.

The Program Locator map and the Chicago Tribune map show many neighborhoods where youth and families need extra help. The challenge is to engage people from business, faith groups, civic groups, public health, universities, etc. in an on-going process that leads to a better understanding of the root-causes of the problem along with a better understanding of potential solutions, based on what we can learn from efforts all over the world. Furthermore, this understanding has to lead to a growth in solution providers in all of the neighborhoods shown on the maps to have a need for extra help.

This problem is not new. Finding a way to build on-going engagement of hundreds of thousands of people in the Chicago region would be new. One potential is the use of MOOCs, as described in this Harvard Business Review article, as well as in other articles I've written about MOOCs and Learning on this blog.

Just as a reminder that this is not a new problem, I encourage you to read some of these articles from the Violence section of this blog

We've heard this all before, July 2012

Teen killed in Maywood, Sept. 2011

Quelling Wave of Youth Violence, Oct. 2011

Enough is Enough, July 2010

This is a time to look in our collective mirror, Oct. 2009

Chicago Kids Victim of Neighborhood Violence, July 2009

“7-Year-Old’s Death at Cabrini Requires Action.” Sept 2008 article shows front cover of October 1992 Chicago SunTimes.

I encourage you to read this article about building networks and mapping their growth.

When you read my articles about MOOCs and Learning you'll see that I point to a library of articles that people can use to expand their knowledge. I keep adding new links to the library all the time, such as this Chicago Crime Lab page. In a MOOC we are encouraging people to dig through these links at their own pace and share what they are learning in a variety of on-line communities where they learn from others, while also building relationships with people who might work together to implement some of these ideas in more places where the maps indicate need.

Until we can find investors who will help finance the network building that leads to more people reading articles like this and engaging their friends, co-workers, family and others in understanding the information and applying their own time, talent and dollars to supporting solutions in different places ON AN ON_GOING BASIS, we'll still be reading media stories about violence and shooting in Chicago and other cities 20 years from now.

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