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You decided to create a podcast to document a specific or unique aspect of the social, built, or natural environment of a neighborhood. A podcast is a voice recording whose cultural, economic, political, or environmental topic aligns with the interests of an audience the speaker uploads to the Internet broad- or narrow-scale sharing. From podcaster to podcaster production level, format, style, and topic differ. However, a common trait among most seems to be a passion for supplying audiences with narratives about people and places not commonly broadcasted by traditional news outlets.
Ideas or topics for a neighborhood-focused podcast are not in short supply. For example, a podcast emphasizing the social environment may dive into the world of dog walkers. Pet ownership is a social construct (Wood et al, 2017). Dog walkers are documented as creating discord in neighborhoods (Vargas, 2019). The tale of the built environment of a neighborhood may be told through the uniformity or diversity of architectural structures (e.g., streets, commercial buildings, etc.) or even technologies (e.g., automobiles, etc.) appearing within its borders. The natural environment may consist of nature trails, creeks, trees, gardens, and lawns a neighborhood contains.
The podcast is to consist of 7 – 10 minutes of discussion and a write-up. As long as a central idea or unifying theme is in place, a podcast has limitless possibilities to engage listening audiences of all types. A podcast may be done with a smartphone or elaborate recording equipment. However, this assignment does not require you to empty your bank account to produce the final product.
You will write a 400 – 450-word introduction to the podcast. As a guideline, the introduction must contain a discussion of the:
Central idea or unifying theme of the podcast;
Elements (e.g., streets, architectural styles, etc.) that structure the boundaries of the neighborhood, its brief history, and description of its contemporary status;
Environmental type (e.g., social, built, natural) selected and why you chose that one; and
Your understanding of how the topic of the podcast may relate to course concepts, discussions, documentaries, or other learning materials.
Also, a 500 – 550 word analysis must be provided. You will explain:
What or who sparked your interest in the topic or idea and why;
The character (aesthetic, political, sympathetic, celebratory, etc.) of your podcast;
The ideal audience for your podcast and why (i.e., behavioral change, advocacy, etc.);
Why the narrative topic was selected as well as what its discourse may signify, represent, or convey; and
The story the podcast will help tell and how your voice will help make its subjects accessible
Podcasts require research. The history of a neighborhood, for example, is not common knowledge. Municipal-centered history books, city archives, planning departments, and community development agencies are a few of the many sources providing neighborhood histories. Population statistics by census tract (which most neighborhoods follow) are provided by the U.S. Bureau of the Census. Local and even national news outlets report on the events of a neighborhood from construction projects to economic and social gatherings like festivals. Credit must be given to all research sources (e.g., articles, books, organizational reports, etc.), and must be incorporated into the introduction and analysis where appropriate. Citations must also be provided in a works cited or references section. The Online Writing Lab at Purdue University is a helpful resource to learn about different citation conventions (e.g., APA, MLA, Chicago Manual of Style) for application purposes. Visit https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/resources.htmlLinks to an external site. for access.
Vargas, T. (2019, April 24). The Howard University controversy was never just about dogs. It was about respect. The Washington Post. Retrieved January 27, 2021, from https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/the-howard-university-controversy-was-never-just-about-dogs-it-was-about-respect/2019/04/24/e0286c14-66a2-11e9-a1b6-b29b90efa879_story.htmlLinks to an external site..
Wood, L., Marten, K., Christian, H., Houghton, S., Kawachi, I., Vallesi, I., and McCune, S. (2017) Social capital and pets: a tale of four cities. Population Health 3; 442 -447.