Volunteer-based IT Helpdesks as Ambiguous Quasi-Public Services: A Case Study from Two Nordic Countries

Camilla Vesterberg Christensen, Nils Ehrenberg, Jörn Christiansson, Erik Grönvall, Joanna Saad-Sulonen, Turkka Keinonen

Publikation: Konference artikel i Proceeding eller bog/rapport kapitelKonferencebidrag i proceedingsForskningpeer review


In this case study we take a Nordic perspective on the tension between increased digitalisation of public services and the insufficient support for citizens with limited digital literacy. Volunteer-based IT helpdesk services in public libraries have emerged as an attempt to address this tension. Drawing on examples of volunteering in public library-based IT helpdesk services in two Nordic countries, this paper considers the IT helpdesks as quasi-public services. Based on interviews, observations and workshops, we explore: the work of IT helpdesk volunteers, the characteristics of helpdesk services offered, and the implications of these services being offered by volunteers. The services offered are of acceptable quality to the users while the ambiguity and lack of institutional support is making the service fragile. In spite of the challenges of the quasi-public IT helpdesk service we also note how it offers a potential platform for the co-design and support of new public services.
TitelNordiCHI '22: Nordic Human-Computer Interaction Conference
Antal sider12
ForlagAssociation for Computing Machinery
Publikationsdato8 okt. 2022
StatusUdgivet - 8 okt. 2022
BegivenhedNordic Human-Computer Interaction Conference 2022: Participative computing for sustainable futures - Aarhus University, Aarhus, Danmark
Varighed: 10 okt. 202212 okt. 2022
Konferencens nummer: 12


KonferenceNordic Human-Computer Interaction Conference 2022
LokationAarhus University


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