Four teams of students in the class “Intro to Social Justice: Gentrification, The City, and Social Justice” determined their own community-engaged research project within the general question: “How can we grow cities in a way that is both equitable and sustainable?” Their workflow was structured by the Reflect! platform. The user guidance provided by the platform helped the teams to identify the relevant stakeholders; analyze their positions and understand their legitimacy; develop an encompassing formulation of their specific problem; and to engage in developing a proposal to solve the problem by reflective consensus building. The project was a collaboration between the Reflect! Lab and Serve-Learn-Sustain.
Our DILAC grant funded several undergraduate students: a teaching assistant for the class and students who worked on the Reflect! software and the design of its user interface. Additionally, there was support for the instructor, the developer of the platform, and the leader of the NGO “Mad Housers” that develops low-cost housing for people who need it, improves the quality of housing options, and advocates for homeless people to “ensure their moral and civil rights are protected” (http://madhousers.org).