The S. Pedro da Cova Community Knowledge Centre, a local example of empowerment through technology
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AbstractS. Pedro da Cova (Gondomar), located ten kilometres from the city centre of Porto (Portugal), is considerate a depressed territory, with a large spectrum of social, economic and urban problems, but also with local positive aspects capable to reach the different development opportunities.In the ambit of the regeneration process for this area, the local authority draw a strategy based in the empowerment of the citizens, where the Information Communication Technologies (ICT?s) assumed a major role. With this purpose, it was intended to build a Community Technology Centre for the disfavoured children. From the building construction till the first activities, it is our conviction that to break the differences between the have and the have not?s it will be very important to conciliate the new technologies and the local characteristics. The children will be the active agents in the dissemination of the project through the development of the different activities, sensitising the families to adopt a healthy life and announce situations of risk, for example. To validate the project will be created an permanent observatory that propose a moment of reflection and auto-valuation about the evolution of the different activities, thechanges to do, and the identification of new problems and the redefinition of new methodologies. The aim of the article is not only to show the positive aspects, indeed significant, but also to bring into discussion some questions; in order to understand the possibility of defining an empowerment strategy based in the ICT?s. How to conciliate the individualperspectives of the future into a common objective? How to show to all community that information and knowledge are fundamentalto build a more liveable and equity neighbourhood? How to transfer the results to a larger strategy for the entire city? And, at theend, how to explain that people is the most important "infrastructure" to build a better future?