Data Literacy

Special Issue – JoCI

Deadline extended to the 18th December

Call for Papers: Special issue – Community Informatics and Data Literacy Journal of Community Informatics ( Submissions due 30th September.

A special issue of the international Journal of Community Informatics ( will be devoted to Data Literacy. Community Informatics (CI) is the study and the practice of enabling communities with Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs).  This special issue will focus on the role of data literacy in using ICT to empower and enable communities. The issue is expected to be published in June 2016. The Journal of Community Informatics is a focal point for the communication of research of interest to a global network of academics, community informatics practitioners and national and multi-lateral policy makers.

Call for papers

The field of CI seeks to explore the potential of information and communication technologies and their applications for social and economic development efforts at the community level. It particularly seeks to ensure that marginalized individuals and communities can benefit from the opportunities that ICTs can provide. Increasingly data literacy has been identified as a requirement to make effective use of these opportunities. However, very little attention has been paid to defining what data literacy means or how it can be achieved.

Data literacy refers to the skills, knowledge and context needed to make effective use of data on the web. It includes the ICT skills to find, access and manipulate data; the statistical and subject matter skills to interpret and use the data; and also the context needed to provide the opportunity and motivation to use the data. It can be seen as a characteristic of an individual or a community. Recently there have been calls for greater data literacy from communities as diverse as the open data movement (who see it as essential if open data is to fulfil its promise of greater transparency and engagement) and the citizen science movement (who see it as required for citizens to understand, engage in, and support science). This raises fundamental concerns in CI such as the power of those who are data literate relative to those who are not, and the right of experts to demand skills of the population as a whole. However, these debates need to be underpinned with a clearer and more detailed description of what data literacy is and why it is needed. Work on data literacy has remained the preserve of educationalists and librarians, but the increased use of data in many areas has created a pressing need for a more multi-disciplinary view.

For this special issue of the Journal on Data Literacy, we are inviting submissions of original, unpublished articles. Potential topics include (but are not limited to):

  • What do we mean by data literacy?
  • Why do we need data literacy?
  • How should data literacy be achieved?
  • What are the broader political, social and philosophical implications of data literacy?
  • What are the practical implications of data literacy?

We welcome research articles, along with case studies and notes from the field. All research articles will be double blind peer-reviewed. Insights and analytical perspectives from practitioners and policy makers in the form of notes from the field or case studies are also encouraged – these will not be peer-reviewed.

Closing date for submission of full papers: 30 September 2015 18th December!

Submission Process & Guidelines
Authors need to register with the Journal prior to submitting or, if already registered, can simply log in and begin the five-step process.

Guest editors:
Alan Tygel, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Mark Frank, Web Science Centre for Doctoral Training, University of Southampton
Johanna Walker, Web Science Centre for Doctoral Training, University of Southampton
Judie Attard, University of Bonn, Germany