Random ramblings/scattered thoughts on Big Data vs Stories/Small Narratives in development
Stories pattern and train people into ways to see the world.
There is no genetic difference between us – the difference is in the stories of the society in which we grew up in.
Therefore for empowerment to happen – the stories people tell or share are one of the things you wanna change.
if you can change the stories the people tell, you change the way they see themselves and the way they see things around them.
But you wanna do that in a bottom up approach, not in a top down manipulative way…
traditional research/approach is hypothesis based and inductive with roots in science … it deals with objects, not subjects.
It does not allow for subjectivity, it assumes there is something objective to be discovered and measured.
its practices have crossed over to the development community including social sciences.
Experts gather stories from the fields – mostly using un-human or unfair ways like mass survey or SMS polls and tag them – their expertise/background is what actually counts.
Then those stories get structured and interpreted and redistributed by those experts as best practices and policy points.
But instead of experts, the stories that people tell to each other in very few sentences – are the stories who filter the way we see data and visualize it.
numbers create objectivity – they gain attention – so people believe them
stories create rich context so the people actually change – get moved.
Then those stories and narratives need to flow at a horizontal level (thanks to the internet) which is gonna create far more innovation and hopefully empowermentRead More