Active Ageing, Mobile Technologies- and the A-C-M

Active Ageing, Mobile Technologies is the title of the SSHRC Partnership Development Grant that is funding the development of this nascent international, multidisciplinary partnership. The grant brings together a team of researchers and community partners from Malaysia, Catalonia, Canada and Quebec whose goal is to better understand the intersections between communications, ageing and mobility. The goal of the grant is not just to create knowledge, but to create connection. In our case we are consolidating a team of researchers who share a commitment to expanding our knowledge of how older adults, primarily over the age of 65, engage with communications and media technologies in this present moment.

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In collaboration with seniors and youth from the Park Extension neighbourhood in Montreal, AddressKnown explores intergenerational location-based, dynamic storytelling.

It is a research creation project dedicated to collecting personal memories, based on common locations within Montreal’s Park Extension neighbourhood. Park Extension is a neighbourhood that transcends typical notions of age and “growing old.” In a sense, both the physical space and its citizens are linked together by solidarity and a willingness to keep the community dynamic and active. Through a series of digital storytelling workshops with seniors and youth, this project sheds light on local points of interest within Park Extension. Traditional and digital mapping techniques are used to capture the historical, political, and cultural dimensions of this unique neighbourhood.

The interactive website, which we call a location based web documentary, includes portraits of Park Extension citizens who are actively involved with the community at various levels. Each portrait brings forward specific personal memories based on locations within the neighbourhood. In turn, each location can be understood through personal, historical, and cultural lenses. Additionally, each portrait presents various perspectives on specific aspects of the community. Such perspectives include: age, gender, ethnic background, socio-economic background, religious beliefs, level of participation within the community, etc.

Location based storytelling techniques are used to showcase the connection between space, time, and memory. Moreover, the “function of mapping is less to mirror reality than to engender the re-shaping of the worlds [community] in which people live” (Corner, 1999, p.10). This project works against traditional assumptions about “old people living in old neighbourhoods”, in that it showcases the active involvement of seniors, youth, and adults in an effort to better understanding how intergenerational conversations and efforts keep a community strong and “on the map.”

This project, which was initiated in January 2012, was completed in April 2015. It works against traditional assumptions about “old people living in old neighbourhoods” because it showcases the active involvement of seniors, youth, and adults in an effort to better understanding how intergenerational conversations and efforts keep a community strong and on the map. The exhibition of the project happened in the Parc Extension neighbourhood in November 2015.

Project updates

Giuliana Cucinelli, Concordia University
Kim Sawchuk, Concordia University
Myriam Label-Bernier, Concordia University
Sasha Dyck, Park Ex Historical Society
Sophie Guérin, Université de Montréal


Research Areas
Inter-generational Storytelling
Community Activism
Location-based Storytelling

ACT Partners
Concordia University
Université de Montréal


Related projects

Constance Lafontaine

Constance Lafontaine is the Associate Director of ACT and works with the Director to manage the project from Concordia University. As part of her work with ACT, Constance develops and leads participatory action research and research creation projects with Montreal-based partners. She also explores the intersections of animality and human and non-human ageing, including probing multi-species temporalities. Constance is also completing a PhD in Communication Studies at Concordia University, where she focuses on the intersections between discourses of global warming and contemporary animal spectacles, focussing on polar bear displays in Canada. She has completed undergraduate degrees in Communication and Political Science and a Master of Arts in Communication at the University of Ottawa.