|29-30 April 2014, LICA Building A29, Lancaster University|
|Home > Abstracts|
Position Statements & Abstracts
Mobilities Design - towards a new ‘material turn’
Ole B. Jensen, Aalborg University
This talk will put focus on a new way of thinking about the challenges facing mobilities in the near future. Research into the global social and environmental challenges articulate a need for new ways of thinking about social justice as well as planetary survival. However, the last decade of research into mobilities have also shown that mobilities is much more than simple physical displacements of bodies, vehicles, and information from point A to B. The practiced and lived everyday life mobilities across cultures, sites, and scales require an understanding of mobilities as an important life condition affecting notions of culture, self, Other, and the built environment. Moreover, sites and systems hosting and affording mobilities needs to be explored for their potentials to become more interesting, inspiring, and engaging. As billions of people are on the move, we need to stop thinking of this as simple acts of instrumental displacement. We become who we are as we move (or are prevented from moving) and engage in mobile practices of all sorts. Seen in this light the mobility systems of the future need to become:
The last decade of research into everyday life mobility has let me to articulate a research focus on the ‘mobile situations’ and how these are ‘staged’ in complex processes of infrastructural system-logics as well as in myriads of individual and incremental decisions (Jensen 2013, 2014). This is a research that asks the pragmatic question: What makes a given mobile situation possible? From the point of view of what I call ‘critical mobilties thinking’ I propose that mobilities research needs both to be ‘critical’ in relation to identifying ‘problems’ as well as ‘potentials’. Most social research on mobilities is good at the former, but less developed in relation to the latter. Therefore I have engaged with urban design, architecture and other design disciplines to explore their ‘potential seeking’ capabilities. Based on this the ‘staging mobilities’ opens up to a more design-oriented and material perspective on mobilities. Therefore I claim in this talk that we need a new ‘material turn’ in mobility research. It is a turn that orients itself towards design, space, and ‘materialities of mobilities’ much more than earlier research have done. In order to do so I propose the articulation of the new emerging research field of ‘mobilities design’ as an attempt to meet some of these challenges facing future mobility.
Between Things: Mobilities, Design & Art
Jen Southern, Lancaster University
This paper explores the intersections between the sociology of mobilities, design research, and art practice, through the parallel developments of locative media technologies and mobilities research since 2000. It is concerned with the practice of ‘doing as knowing’ and explores experimental creative practice as a research method. In this context, locative technologies as research tools invite participants to actively experiment with spatial technologies in situ, and through embodied experience of technologies, places and events to understand them in new ways.
The paper uses the example of the speculative art and design project Comob Net. The Comob Net mobile phone app simply shows the locations of multiple members of a group, and joins together their locations with a line. It was originally built for use in participatory workshop situations. In analyzing responses to the app an emerging sense of ‘comobility’, of being mobile with others at a distance, was identified. Subsequently, Comob Net has been distributed on the app store, and people world-wide have downloaded and used it. This paper describes comobility and explores how art, design, and mobilities research are combined in creative practice.
Addressing Able-ism through Research-Creation: mobility studies, critical disability studies and (Creative) Collaborative Action and Reflection Research (C-CARR).
In this presentation I will discuss Concordia University’s Mobile Media Lab’s (MML) intertwined engagement with critical disability studies and mobility studies (see www.mia.mobilities.ca). The focus is on how “research-creation” (Chapman and Sawchuk, 2012) has been harnessed to identify and challenge the many forms of systemic discriminations that exclude people with disabilities from fully participating in civil society. Through a series of collaborations with individuals and organizations involved in the disability rights program in Québec, the MML are attempting to address “able-sim” through an identification of “the socio-spatial forces” at work that produce “material lived and imagined differences” between the abled and the disabled. (Crooks and Chouinard, 2006:346)
Theorising Design of 'Human Technologies'
Jesper Simonsen, Roskilde University, Denmark
Download pdf here
Why Count Sheep, and Other Tricky Questions About Speculative Design Ethnography
Anne Galloway, Victoria University of Wellington
Governments around the world require livestock farmers to tag their animals and track their movements from birth to death. Mandated for the purposes of local biosecurity and global market access, electronic identification is also used to keep track of breeding information and health treatments. Combined with location technologies like GPS, and sensor technologies that can monitor individual animal health and external environmental conditions, livestock are now capable of generating and transmitting enormous amounts of data.
Intersections of mobilities, practices, and futures
Allison Hui, Sociology and DEMAND Centre, Lancaster University
Whether considering the materiality of roads or the virtuality of plans and diagrams, intersections mark out both sameness and difference. They make connections by drawing boundaries, articulating at once that which is shared and that which is not. This paper thinks through how different conceptual intersections of mobilities and everyday or professional practices matter as part of the process of transforming future mobilities to address the UK¹s aggressive emissions targets. It draws upon research in the DEMAND (Dynamics of energy, mobility and demand) Centre, based at Lancaster University and funded as part of the EPSRC/Research Councils UK End Use Energy Demand reduction programme.
Game Design as Rhetoric
Paul Coulton, LICA, Lancaster University
Marshall McLuhan said in his 1964 book, The Medium is the Message, “we become what we behold. We shape our tools, and thereafter our tools shape us”. In a relatively short time video games have become a major feature of our cultural landscape. This extends beyond the games themselves such that we can now see their aesthetic and iconography represented in the other main forms of media such as films, books and television - thus we are all becoming more ‘games literate’. In recognition of the significance of games we have seen approaches such as ‘gamification’ becoming widely touted as potential solutions to engaging users in all sorts of activities. Gamification solutions are generally directed toward achieving minor behavioral change using simple feedback loops that reward users actions in relation easily understood goals. However, it is difficult to see how such techniques could be scaled to address the big societal challenges, which designers often refer to as ‘wicked problems’. Such problems are not wicked in that they are evil, but rather they are difficult or impossible to solve because of incomplete, contradictory, and changing requirements. In this talk I discuss adopting design approaches inspired by the view that games are procedural rhetoric through which the messiness of wicked problems can be revealed rather than reduced.
Trailblazing (in) emergent landscapes of the possible
Thomas Binder, Royal Academy of Fine Arts, School of Design, Copenhagen
Our contemporary worlds seem at the same time to be surveyed, monitored and mapped at a scale that makes the mundane transparent and trivial to whoever has access to ‘big data’, and to be particularized, hybridized and ever proliferation to an extend that makes any foresight or projection into the future highly uncertain. Scholars of STS have taught us that agency is an outcome of ever emerging networks (Latour, 2005) and that the engagement of research participate in the messy happenings of the social (Law, 2004, Wakeford & Lury, 2012). To represent the everyday in any way that extends the particular and situated does not appear to form a stable platform for invoking predictable change whatever such a platform is appropriated politically or commercially (Thrift, 2008 ). Instead agency must be grabbed through ephemeral unfoldings of ‘the possible’ in on-going encounters between emergent practices. In this talk I will argue that these contemporary conditions are particularly visible but also appropriable in the field of design. I will suggest that classical understandings of design as privileged projections into the future based on interpretations of the past is giving way to new conceptions of design as collaborative encounters with the present from which ‘the possible’ emanates. These encounters are no longer taking place in design studios but rather in genuinely dispersed design laboratories where things and events interchangeably actualize potentialities (Binder et al. , 2011). What is performed in these design laboratories I will call rehearsals (Halse et al. 2008) and what is enacted I will suggest is a kind of trailblazing of emergent landscapes (Telier et al, 2011).
Latour, B. (2005). Reassembling the social-an introduction to actor-network-theory. Reassembling the Social-An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory, by Bruno Latour, pp. 316. Foreword by Bruno Latour. Oxford University Press
|| Home | Abstracts | Speakers | Participants | Programme | References | Registration | Travel and Accommodation | Contact Us ||