Avatopia was a joint research and development project involving K3 at Malmö University, the Narrativity Studio and the Swedish public service television, conducted between 2000-2003. The aim of the project was to build an avatarworld, closely related to TV-programs for teenagers and young adults. The avatarworld had different tools for societal action as well as for collaborative creation and animation, and the role of television was to introduce the world and strengthen the societal impact of Avatopia. But also to complicate and potentially resist what happened there. The development of Avatopia was conducted in close collaboration with about thirty teenagers in the south of Sweden, who also formed the core community when Avatopia was running during autumn 2003.
The project was exhibited as a part of K3 – a Digital Bauhaus at the Museum for Contemporary Art in Roskilde, Denmark spring 2004 –see:
Gislén, Ylva (2004) ”Avatopia” in Winkelhorn, Kathrine & Morten Sondergaard (ed) K3 – ett digital Bauhaus. Visioner, bildning, praktiker, Informations förlag, Copenhagen: pp 33-34
Academic articles on Avatopia:
Gislén, Ylva & Jonas Löwgren(2002) ”Avatopia-Planning a Youth Community for Non-Violent Societal Action” Digital Creativity vol 13, s 23-37
Gislén, Ylva & Jonas Löwgren (2006) ”Avatopia: a crossmedia community for societal action.” CHI2006 ”Investigating new user experience challenges in iTV: mobility & sociability”
Gislén, Ylva; Löwgren, Jonas & Ulf Myrestam (2007) ”Participatory design of a cross-media community for societal action: Lessons from Avatopia” Design Inquiries. Nordic Design Research Conference.
The chapter “collaborative media and society” in Jonas Löwgren & Bo Reimer (2013) Collaborative Media: Production, Consumption and Design interventions, MIT Press also contains a retrospective and contextual analysis of the Avatopia project (at p 47-53)