Hero reports

Security campaign that reports civic courage


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US United States
Web http://heroreports.org/


About the project Edit

Hero Reports is a security campaign that reports civic courage in the form of a website. It asks citizens to report moments when others make a difference. Acknowledge those stand up, not in fear, but in hope. These can be small acts of kindness. Giving up a seat for a pregnant woman, holding the door for someone or actions in times of crisis. The hero who picks up a fallen child, the bystander who assists in a car accident. Hero Reports' vision is to build a system of hero maps that exist alongside crime counterparts. The creator, MIT doctoral candidate Alyssa Wright, hopes that her project will help build public confidence, raise property values in areas where goodwill is prevalent and just plain improve the collective world view by collecting and mapping citizen reports of courageous acts performed by ordinary people in New York City.

Wright says she was inspired by the See Something, Say Something campaign, New York Metro Transit's effort to inspire citizen vigilance in the wake of the attacks on September 11, 2001. (The campaign, officially titled the "Eyes of New York," was first launched in 2003). As the Hero Reports site proclaims: "To keep us safe, the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority told us to look for signs of danger, and report them. We think we should also look for signs of courage. We call them hero reports." Wright hopes to collect at least 1,944 reports of citizen courage to echo the number of responses reported to See Something, Say Something.

In what ways is this project unique and creative? Edit

Hero Reports counterbalances the vigilance associated with suspicion and othering with measures of positive and contextual alertness. It is a technology that builds communities that are truly and collectively empowering. Hero Reports provides this alternative first by aggregating stories of everyday heroism, then by thematically, geographically and temporally mapping them.

What is the social value of this project? Edit

By linking and contextualizing discrete moments of heroism, Hero Reports promotes a public discourse about how we create, enforce and value social norms. Balancing the empirical ways we measure crime, Hero Reports provides the groundwork for determining the empirical parameters for heroism.

What is the potential of this project to expand and develop? Edit

Any community can adapt Hero Reports to document positive civic acts in their own back yard. There are currently version of Hero Reports for the cities of Boston, Detroit, Saint Paul, Philadelphia and Juarez.

What was the triggering factor of this project? Edit

What is the business model of this project? Edit

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