Participatory Projects & Partnerships

Through participatory projects and partnerships, I work to create opportunities for scholars, students, and community members to engage in conversations and civic problem-solving with the hope of building a more equitable and participatory democracy. In the space below, you’ll find examples of my most recent projects in the greater Kansas City area. None of these projects were done in isolation. My community partners include Code for KC, Center for Neighborhoods, Organizing for Action (now All on the Line), and others.

Re.Use.Full: Social Advocacy & Technical Communication (2019)

Exposing advanced undergraduate students to the fieldwork of community-engaged technical communication research, Re.Use.Full is an ongoing collaboration with Code for KC, Kansas City’s Code for America brigade that focuses on bridging the opportunity divide. For this project, students at the University of Missouri-Kansas City learned and practiced skills such as content strategy, prototyping, document design, and UX testing to solve technical communication problems on an in-process website. More detailed descriptions of this project can be found in my Intercom magazine article, which was co-authored with one of the students, my Digital Rhetoric Collaborative blog post, and KC Digital Drive’s MetroLab Network webpage.


CommunityKC: Mapping Neighborhood Assets (2018)

Introducing undergraduate students to the concepts of community development and asset mapping, Community KC, a shared project with Code for KC and KC Digital Drive, was focused on connecting people, projects, and resources in the Kansas City area. During a three-semester, tiered project, students enrolled in my Civic and Community Engagement course at the University of Missouri-Kansas City interviewed Kansas City nonprofit managers, government employees, and community organizers in an effort to gather extensive, localized data. More detailed descriptions about this project can be found on Code for KC’s GitHub and in a forthcoming blog post I am co-authoring with a UMKC student as part of her capstone project in the Honors College.


Sound Off: A Community Writing Project (2017)

Exploring community writing as community listening, Sound Off invited Kansas City community members to share their personal stories and reflections on the topics of gun violence prevention, marriage equality, immigration reform, climate change, health care, economic issues, and standing with women in the age of #metoo. A more detailed description of this community writing project can be found in my Community Literacy Journal article, “The Story of Sound Off.” UMKC Matters also covered the exhibit in the library here.