Social Media, Social Design and Social Construction: A Dialectic Approach for the Use of Social Media in the Public Sector

By B. Joon Kim and Farida Adam.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In this article, the authors argue the need for a “dialectic approach” to bring positive salience in current social media activities that focus on public participation at the community level and emphasize the needs of reflective public administrators and their praxis in terms of the ideas of dialectic, social construction and social design. The authors make a case for revamping our understanding of civic engagement through the use of social media in order to overcome one-sided epistemologies, such as functionalist or interpretive epistemologies, and to find a constructive way of recognizing the dialectical possibility and the complex influence of social media in public administration. The article concludes that the “public sphere” seems to be redefined at each turn by both citizens’ and administrators’ social network activities via both online and offline communication channels. New social media technologies complement the face-to-face encounters by helping community members participate in meaningful ways through activities ranging from understanding issues better, defining courses of action, and devising mechanisms to work towards solving concrete problems.

Keywords: Dialectic Approach, Social Media, Social Design, Social Construction

International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp.65-78. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 775.648KB).

Dr. B. Joon Kim

Assistant Professor, Department of Public Policy, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, IN, USA

Dr. B. Joon Kim, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Policy at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. His research has appeared in Administration & Society, Information, Communication and Society, International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, and The Global Studies Journal. His current research focuses on the role of community groups in E-government and E-democracy; the social impact of information technology on citizen interaction and collaborative governance; and the multilevel analysis on civic and political participation.

Farida Adam

Graduate Administrative Assistant, Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne, IN, USA

Farida Adam graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Manchester College. She is current a candidate for a Master’s in Public Affairs with a concentration in Public Administration at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne.


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