PlaceCal is a community-based geolocated calendar app for our neighbourhoods.

When talking to residents in our fieldwork, we found out people felt there was a lack of things to do for older people. We started to collate local event information, and quickly found out we ended up with more than we can handle: the results of our labours so far are on the region pages. We realised that the main problem is not the lack of events but the lack of technical infrastructure that responds to the needs of older people, letting them find out about events that are often just around the corner. Working in collaboration with Geeks for Social Change, we are aiming to solve both these issues by building a new kind of platform.

PlaceCal aims to solve this by improving the skills and data that local organisations provide, and building a shared platform to aggregate events. We are doing this in collaboration with Manchester City Council. Together we are conducting research in the pilot area of Hulme and Moss Side to find out more about what organisations need to make the project a success.

After organisations have the technical infrastructure we need (an updated calendar in iCal format), we can start making the app. Through the Neighbourhood boards, we will then build a service to help distribute organisations’ event data and assign a secretary in each area to be the gateway to getting on the calendar. Our eventual aim is to use PlaceCal to automate the production of local events listing booklets, allowing people to reap the benefits who do not currently use the internet at all.

PlaceCal is funded by CityVerve, and forms a key part of Manchester City Council’s Community Wellness Platform which is currently in development.

More information coming soon. If you’d like to find out more or be one of the pilot organisations for the project, contact Dr. Kim Foale (PlaceCal CTO):