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Why governments need to revive the art of storytelling

9 minute read
Our lives today are dominated by speed and preoccupations that have exhausted our relationships with neighbors and the community around us.
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Our lives today are dominated by speed and preoccupations that have exhausted our relationships with neighbors and the community around us. Thanks to social media, We can communicate more easily with people in different and distant areas, Our level of communication with people living nearby has declined.

Every year, Madinaty presents a play called "Romana Competition". This play celebrates the history of the region when society was socially connected, with generations from different families participating. The town was bustling with banners and parades to promote the event with the participation of restaurants and shops that displayed the play's publications on an annual basis. For its part, The Chamber of Commerce used to promote tourism and investment in the community as part of its ongoing activities.

The performances of the play continue to this day, but that sense of community cohesion has disappeared. Once a community celebration that the people of the city are proud of, the event has turned into a simple event that attracts a small number of people.

Why are we increasingly distancing ourselves from our communities? Why has the level of engagement of individuals in their communities decreased? Some may blame the technology, The reason is that it has changed our lives dramatically. After we used to buy our belongings from the shops on the main street, Online shopping sites have proliferated and we are shopping while sitting at home. Even neighbor meetings and lengthy calls have been replaced by apps like Nextdoor and Ring.

Why not use technology – which has been one of the main reasons that kept people away from their communities – to tell stories that draw them back into society and bond stronger. These stories contribute to giving individuals a real sense of place and building a strong relationship between members of the community.

Visit your local government's website. Do you feel a sense of community there, Or is all you get is just a list of sections and maybe a form for filing a complaint? As you get closer to understanding your community you will have a miniature version of the city's history and a list of facts about it. Do you care about this?

A successful website for any local government is one that attracts visitors. Hundreds of communities, such as Greenville, South Carolina, Iguin and Oregon, have had successful experiences in this regard, where these communities have adopted Esri Story maps that have contributed to encouraging individuals to engage in the communities in which they live stronger and attract visitors at the same time.

It is true that the stories of society have become a lost art, but they are certainly not a lost cause. You can use story maps to enhance your community's identity and improve community sense. Impactful storytelling educates community members, attracts participation, feedback, and instills a sense of pride in promoting your city as an important tourist destination.

Educating community members

States and local governments often make unremitting efforts to educate community members about important topics and local issues that can range from drug addiction and crime levels to how to spend tax money. For example The city of Boston, Massachusetts educates community members on the topic of street snow removal through a story map that illustrates the challenges related to this process. Penillas County in Florida uses narratives and stories to illustrate how tax money is spent, how long it is spent and why. When we contextualize challenges, Individuals view it as one community which encourages them to collaborate to face any challenge together.

Attract participation and feedback

Community participation has been one of the oldest forms of civic engagement that seeks to attract participation in government decisions while providing an opportunity to express opinions. The city of Long Beach, California, seeks to create noise systems based on community inputs through an outsourced storytelling map.

Instilling a sense of pride in the community

When individuals feel connected to a unique culture, history, and social activities, A sense of pride in this community grows within them. Story maps can be used on government websites to share community life and shed light on individuals' lives and contributions to society. For example, The city of Moreno Valley, California, showcases community pride in the city's men and women serving in the military sector and emphasizes community support for them.

Promoting the community as an attractive destination

Governments need to inform individuals, whether from within or outside the community, about those places or magical events that cannot be missed. What is happening in the city that deserves people to know about and care about? Can it be a local production plant or a farmer's market? Use story maps to promote things you want to serve as a symbol and milestone for your community.

Telling novels with Esri Story Maps apps is simpler than it sounds. Visit the site esri.com/storymaps and try it yourself.



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