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After retiring from full-time academia in early 2010 I was appointed as a Senior Research Fellow at University of Wollongong where I have further explored my interests in investigating dynamic contexts through the compound lens of Activity Theory and the complexity theory informed Cynefin framework. This interest came aboutthrough my doctoral research into being an expert in the 21st century. I see Activity Theory as a powerful inclusion in the qualitative researcher’s toolkit as it facilitates a deep understanding of multifaceted, dynamic contexts.

Needless to say my changed circumstances and my official recognition as a “senior” have impacted upon the perspective from which I approach this workshop’s focus “Activity in the Age of Social Media”. I am increasingly interested in the use of technology by seniors. I am not currently an avid user of social media but I do share pins on Pinterest with my grandchildren and their parents – there are renovations afoot! I also participate in online citizen science projects – DigiVol and ClimateWatch.

Research indicates that the use of social media and the online environment is beneficial and that includes there being benefits for older adults too. Community adult education colleges, local libraries and councils, seniors magazines expend considerable effort to encourage older adults to engage with these aspects of their environment. So I would like to see an inclusion / acknowledgement in our discussions of a seniors dimension.