Organization of social spaces as a condition for high-quality human life in digital era: an interdisciplinary approach

Accents of this sphere are based on project obligations in educational field

A modern digital society with its globalization, setevization, higher technification and mobility is the society of the highest risks. On the one hand, it gives new technological possibilities which make human’s life easier and more comfortable; on the other hand, however, it condemns people to resolve the most complicated problems they have never met before, and threatens their psychological health. Among these problems and risks there are a hybrid nature of digital network society ontology itself that erases the boundaries between real and virtual worlds and leads to mass “digital schizophrenia”: ‘an unsystematic mental condition caused by the tension between artificial present created by digital bombardment, and the real one of a person living in harmony’ (D. Rushkoff); dilution and complete loss of cultural identity of a person; impossibility to identify a communicant (a human or a robot) a hundred percent (S. Garfinkel); destruction of real social connections and “forced” loneliness when having a huge number of “friends” in social networks; emotional impoverishment in the process of perception of digital copies instead of real objects or works of art, etc. Consequently, the human life quality of digital era is dual: the repletion of material needs certainly rises while the repletion of social and spiritual ones falls.

To ensure a high-quality life in its social and spiritual aspects, it is necessary to use relevant factors. The most important one is a focused organization of high-technological and multi-functional social spaces as “conservation areas” or “fields” of not only virtual but real presence when not a cyborg but a human being could reach his social and spiritual needs by communicating with other people (W. Mitchell, MIT). These areas, as elements of built environment, could differ and be made either autonomously or as a part of larger spaces – street, campus, museum, library, merchant, exposition ones, etc. This is where the essentially new interaction patterns between a territory (region, city, district, quarter), its citizens and digital technologies appear.

To make these social spaces work in repletion of different social or spiritual human needs at full capacity, and to make them simultaneously become the factors of engaging the most mobile population groups (students, tourists, enterpreneurs, investors, invited experts, migrant workers, digital nomads) on their territory, it is necessary to know principles of their structure, organization, functioning and influence on people in the context of hybrid ontology and digital society’s mobility as well as their promotion as organic parts of territorial brands. This knowledge can be obtained only during the research process from the position of interdisciplinary approach.

Expected results:

  1. Discovery of principles, methods and main tools for the social space organization as conditions for the high-quality life of a human in the beginning of digital era (in the context of hybrid ontology due to actual demands for organization of social communications, ecology, urban planning, design, architecture, social and brand management) and elaboration of a base model (structural, functional and dynamic) of this space on that ground.
  2. Focused organization of high-technological and multi-functional social spaces as “conservation areas” or “fields” of not only virtual but real presence when not a cyborg but a human being could reach his social and spiritual needs by communicating with other people (W. Mitchell, MIT).
  3. Elaboration of specific recommendations for the social space organization as conditions for the high-quality life of a human in the beginning of digital era for representatives of governmental, commercial, and non-commercial structures.
  4. The partnership between Laboratory of High-Hume New Media Technologies (LHNMT), Faculty of Psychology, TSU, and Institute of Place Management, Manchester UK.
  5. The membership of LHNMT in the international educational and research network specialized in research of social spaces organization in digital era.