Death of CSI: If we can’t have a strategy what about asking better questions?

I have some sympathy with OFMdFM for the cold reception for their announcement that their CSI strategy document is dead, but long live CSI. Promising that peace walls will hauled down within 10 years is laudable, but how likely is it since the core constituency of both parties don’t want it (and what they don’t want they generally don’t get)?

Shades of St Augustine (before he got holy): “O Lord, help me to be pure, but not yet”. Or even “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.” It was ever thus…

And yet, last night saw at least an attempt to build some understanding across the city in a 1 City Summit hosted and run by the Belfast Media Group.. It’s a welcome initiative, in line with our own more modest online project of #Belfast2020.

Even just following the conversations on Twitter, it’s evident what powerful latent resources there are to bring to bear on the various problems facing the city. Yet it also flagged some of the problems that are currently being ducked by the big party leaders.

The differential investment levels made by Invest NI between the west and the east of Belfast was flagged as an issue, but there seems as yet little concerted effort to understand the underlying reasons for that differential… [Note: not everything can be blamed on the ‘staff’ folks…]

As Julian O’Neill tweeted in response to a differential I mentioned between East Belfast and Mid Ulster:

There are more searching questions that need to be asked of the data before we can start offering ways out of long term poverty and depravation.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty