Conference paper Open Access

An assets-based design approach to promote digital equity for Latino youth and their communities.

Ahumada-Newhart, Veronica; Hernandez, Maya

Digital technologies have recently shaped the way in which individuals and communities interact. This paper examines the unique social contexts of Latino youth and their use of digital technologies to support access to health information and extend social support. The design and use of digital health tools are complex and should not take a one-size-fits-all approach. In order to better understand community assets and systemic issues of power, this paper explores interactions between developmental, contextual, and technological factors that may empower Latino youth to use digital tools to support their wellbeing, especially in the era of COVID-19 (C-19). Therefore, we first review the nuances of culture and behaviors of Latino youth to highlight opportunities for strength identification support. Next, we review traditional co-design processes and how they might be refined to support an assets-based approach. Finally, we present an assets-based approach and framework to be used as a lens through which designers can gain better understanding of Latino youth and their use of digital technologies to navigate unique challenges. Through this approach, designers may avoid amplifying structural inequities and discriminatory processes in marginalized communities.

The project described was supported by the National Center for Research Resources and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, National Institutes of Health, through Grant TL1 TR001415. We also acknowledge support from the National Science Foundation, National Robotics Initiative 2.0: Ubiquitous Collaborative Robots program (Award #2024933). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH or the NSF.
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