Since finishing my MSc exams in May I’ve been busy researching all things social media and gov 2.0. I’ve built up quite a collection of RSS feeds in Google reader and have been collecting bookmarks and resources via other sources like Twitter, so I thought I would start to share some of the links I have found useful.

Social by Social book – I highly recommend this free, downloadable book for any local gov officers involved in social media and online engagement projects. Really useful, pragmatic advice and loads of great links. The release of the free download couldn’t be more timely given that I am about to start on a project which will focus onusing social media to improve community cohesion.

How to research social media – having chosen a research question focused on social media for my MSc in Human Computer Interaction I suddenly realised I needed to get good at researching social media! I’ve found various tips around on how to conduct research and this was one of the useful links I came across earlier on. I think it’ll be a while before I master Yahoo Pipes though…

Handbook of research on Socio-technical Design and Social Networking systems – for my research project I am interested in how the use of social media by local Councils for citizen engagement relates to theories of the use of technology by organisations (socio-technical systems theory). Although this resource is quite theoretical, I have found it really useful and thought provoking for my research.

Elected Officials Should Get on Twitter If Only to Listen – useful blog post by Walter Neary which I have added to my bookmarks on the use of social media for citizen engagement. I think it’s useful to gather the views of elected officials rather than just webbies or comms officers who are already social media evangelists.

Local DirectGov Usability Site – I came across this link when searching for information about task walkthroughs. I can’t find it easily when navigating through DirectGov’s site but it has some really useful information and practical examples of task walkthroughs (aka cognitive walkthroughs) for local Councils. As the walkthroughs date back to about 2005 I’m surprised I’ve never seen this resource promoted more widely to local government.

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