I am the Professor of Digital Living at Northumbria University. I lead the University’s Multidisciplinary Research Theme in ‘Digital Living’ and am the founder of NORTH Lab. (I am also a Head of Subject in Computer and Information Sciences). I study Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and the design of interactive computational technologies. I’m particularly interested in design research methods and the ways in which technology design can be centred on rich understanding of user experiences, cultures and contexts. My work is often anchored in design anthropology approaches.
I have previously held positions as Senior Lecturer of Experience-Centred Design and then Reader in Cultural Computing at Newcastle University, Lecturer in Human-Computer Interaction in the Mixed Reality Lab and School of Computer Science at the University of Nottingham, and as a post-doc in the Socio-Digital Systems group at Microsoft Research Cambridge. My background is in Psychology (BSc) and Ergonomics (MSc) with a PhD in Computer Science. Over the years my work has been heavily influenced by the sociologists, philosophers, architects and designers that I’ve collaborated with and consequently I take a design-led, social science orientation to understanding human experience and its application to the design of digital technologies.
Currently, a lot of my research work is exploring – what might be termed Human-Building Interaction, exploring the design of ‘smart’ environments (homes and offices) and interactive ‘smart’ products (IoT devices). In the past I have explored design for remembering and memorialization, tangible interfaces and physical computing and ‘digital civics’ – designing to develop technologies to support third sector organisations.