The UDUBSit mobile application is a unique instantiation of a conceptual design that originated in the field of digital anthropology. The application design is based on the concept of a geographically focused, spatiotemporal grid that mediates interactions between user of the application in an attempt to make information more locally relevant and therefore more building of useful. Another explicitly stated focus of the application is the building of inclusive local community. UDUBSit is being developed as an emerging mobile platform for location‐based exchange within goal‐oriented communities.
The application is a sharing application by and for students that aims to facilitate a local social community around the university. The application provides for a local social communication network around current features such as Events, Shout-Outs and Advertisements.
The application was co-designed with students at UWC over a two year period. UDUBS-it allows its users to combine time and space coordinates in order to find interesting events, activities and notices available in their vicinity. On the basis of a map and a spatiotemporal grid UDUBS-it users can visualize which campus-related events, advertisements and notices are taking place.
UDUBS-it is the culmination of several years of collaboration between UWC, UGENT, BELGIUM and MZUMBE UNIVERSITY, TANZANIA.
The project was conceptualised at UGent and co-designed and developed in South Africa. The conceptualisation and development of the mobile application formed part of the Dynamics of Building a Better Society (DBBS) strategic program (under VLIR-UOS) located in the Office of the Rector.
The mobile application is currently being developed jointly between the Department of Information Systems, the Western Cape CoLab for Social Innovation and eInclusion at UWC, in consultation with ICS.
Through the broader UGent partnership we have also been ably assisted by teams of visiting Belgian interns from the Hogeschool West Vlaanderen (HOWEST).
Our CoLab Core Team are also providing technical and software development support to the MFUNZI APP at Mzumbe University, Tanzania. This instantiation of the app has also been customised through a Living Labs co-creation process for the Tanzanian context.
Please see their website for details.
UDUBSit Project's underlying principles
location-based trust communities
user co-creation and student input
focus on capacity building in participating institutions (more than just technology)
“If engineers know what technology can do, anthropologists deal with
what users of technology want.”
Prof Koen Stroeken
Digital Anthropology Research Centre
The application has evolved from a very rudimentary app into a more user-friendly design that can be more beneficial to the broader UWC campus community. The application was developed to its current state through one iteration of the Living Labs innovation process with the campus community stakeholders. This included various rounds of user testing and iterative feedback that was integrated in an agile innovation approach by the CoLab team.
The next round of large scale user testing (see www.udubsit-testing.info)) will kick off in February 2017 and will start another round of Living Labs innovation and co-creation processes with the broader campus community. This feedback will be integrated in the development process of Ver 2.0 that we aim to launch by the end of 2017.