Global Crossroads, developed by Second Story, is a large-scale environmental installation, located in the McKinnon Center for Global Affairs, driven by content created within an accompanying web application. The project is an exciting example of how Oxy is using digital media and technological innovation to bring its student body together.
The Global Crossroads is an integrated system with two distinct components: A custom web app that highlights the research process, reveals how arguments are developed and constructed, and urges students to learn from and build on each other’s efforts; and a stunning 50′ x 30′ wall of sculpted glass with reactive LED lighting and ten embedded displays that showcase the depth and dimension of the students’ work.
As they work within the web app to create “projects” based on either a thesis or a provocative question, students can view their work in a number of ways, from outlined lists to maps to more visually organized canvases. Content in Global Crossroads is drawn from current events, lab or archival research, and coursework. Discussion is responsive to campus events such as lectures, colloquia, and performances and is augmented by streaming feeds from contemporary mass- and social-media sources. Academic content is supplemented by announcements and by updates about Oxy events and curricula. The interface also allows users to work together on projects, access content submitted by others, investigate new areas of interest, and interact with fellow contributors, strengthening Oxy’s broader sense of community.