Professor Paul Coulton

Professor of Speculative and Game Design

Research Overview

My research can more generally considered as Speculative Design. Speculative Design combines real and/or hypothetical extrapolations of the development of emerging technologies with a consideration of the cultural landscape into which they may be deployed. This activity is embodied as ‘research through design’ and, in particular, to the design of speculative physical/digital interactive games, playful experiences, and artefacts. Some of my early research was conducted using an, 'situated' evaluation methodology in that I utilised 'app stores' and social networks as an experimental platforms. This element of my work led to international recognition by industry as well as academia in that I was selected as one of 50 most talented mobile developers worldwide from a community of over 2 million to be a founding Nokia Champion and the first academic invited to speak at the Game Developers Conference. Increasingly, my work relates to more-tha-human futures using a particular practice of Speculative Design which is Design Fiction as a way of exploring futures for emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things, Machine Learning, Genetic modification etc. Design Fictions are collections of artefacts, that, when viewed together build a fictional world. The artificially built world is a prototyping platform for the very designs that define it, meanwhile those designs reciprocate in kind and prototype the world.

E3: Edge of Reality (ER)
01/04/2022 → 30/09/2022
Research

Trust Me? (I’m an Autonomous Machine)
12/04/2021 → 31/03/2022
Research

E3: AHRC Design Fellowships: Challenges of the Future 2020
01/02/2020 → 30/06/2020
Research

Experiencing the Future Mundane
01/09/2019 → 23/09/2022
Research

PETRAS 2 - Uncanny AI (UncanAI)
01/08/2019 → 01/05/2021
Research

Augmented Humanity: Does the Human Enhance the Machine or the Machine Enhance the Human?
01/01/2019 → 29/10/2019
Research

PETRAS: Extension - demonstrator
01/11/2018 → 30/04/2019
Research

Objects of Immersion
05/02/2018 → 04/08/2018
Research

Cyber Security of the Internet of things
28/02/2016 → 31/08/2019
Research

Design Fiction: The Movie Joe Lindley
01/02/2016 → 31/03/2018
Research

Digital Personhood: Creating and Exploring Digital Empathy
01/10/2013 → 31/03/2016
Research

Taking the Artwork Home
01/05/2013 → 31/01/2017
Research

moBile sociAl netwoRking supporTing local Ethical tRading
29/04/2013 → 31/12/2014
Research

The Creative Exchange
09/01/2012 → 30/06/2017
Research

Citizens Transforming Society: Tools for Change
01/11/2011 → 30/04/2015
Research

Exploratory use of mobile phone technology to assess the impact of traffic related air pollution on children on the journey to school.
01/01/2007 → 31/12/2009
Research

Ethical Dilemma Cafe as part of Mozilla Festival 2022
Festival/Exhibition/Concert

Ghosts in the Smart Home
Oral presentation

Seeing the spaces in between: Philosophical perspectives for exploring spatial configurations in games
Oral presentation

AI: more than human
Festival/Exhibition/Concert

Sustainable Things: Design for More-Than Human Centred Worlds
Invited talk

Designing More-Than-Human Futures
Invited talk

Defuturing Futures through More-Than-Human Centred Design
Invited talk

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (Swiss Design Symposia)
Other

more-than-human centred design: ghosts in the machine
Invited talk

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (open call 6 UCL)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (open call 5 UCL)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (open call 4 UCL)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (Imperial College & Blackburn Fab Lab)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (open call 3)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (open call 2)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (open call 1)
Other

Think/Do/Repeat
Invited talk

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop V2 (more -than-human design class)
Other

The ESRC Festival of Social Science
Festival/Exhibition/Concert

Machine Learning and place-making 2020
Participation in conference

Uncanny Ai Iconography Workshops
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop (Open Call 4)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop (Open Call 3)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop (Open Call 2)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop (Open Call 1)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop (LICA)
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop
Other

Uncanny AI Iconography Workshop (Beyond Imagination)
Other

ACM International Conference on Interactive Media Experiences
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Prototyping Alternate Presents and Plausible Futures for IOT using Design Fiction
Invited talk

moving towards more-than human centred design
Invited talk

more-than-human centred design: reimagining design for the internet of things
Invited talk

TIPS by Design – Building a Community of UK TIPS Researchers – 2018
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Living Room of the Future
Invited talk

more than human centred design: considering other things
Invited talk

Becoming Immersed in the Future Mundane
Invited talk

Adoption in the Internet of Things
Invited talk

Design Futures and the IoT
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Exploring Futures through Game Worlds
Invited talk

EPSRC (External organisation)
Membership of committee

Design Futures through Design Fiction
Invited talk

Mozilla Festival 2016
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Light Up Lancaster
Festival/Exhibition/Concert

BBC R&D
Business Engagement

The N8 Research Partnership (External organisation)
Membership of committee

Speculative Game Design
Invited talk

AHRC (External organisation)
Membership of committee

Digital Design Weekend at V&A
Festival/Exhibition/Concert

A Rhetorical Approach to Gameful Design
Invited talk

Mobilities & Design Workshop
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Social TV and the Second Screen
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Social Media
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Panel Speaker on Designing for Young People
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Social Media and Gamification
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Mobile Augmented Reality: Looking Beyond the Hype
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Moving Beyond Points and Badges to Using Games as a Lens for UX Design
Invited talk

Role of Social Media in Mass Particpation TV
Invited talk

Social Media
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Rest In Pixels
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Gesture Based Computing
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Gamification: Brilliant or Bullshit?
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Augmented Reality: Beyond the Hype
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Gamification: Will it Yeild and Epic Win?
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Mobile Games as Social Information Appliances or Meme Generators
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

MobiKUI 2008 International Workshop on Mobile and Kinetic User Interfaces
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Nokia Champion
National/international honour

Bronze Award in ACE 2011 Game Competition
Prize (including medals and awards)

Innovation Prize in FlashLite Developer Challenge
Prize (including medals and awards)

NFC Innovation Award
Prize (including medals and awards)

  • CeMoRe - Centre for Mobilities Research
  • Imagination Lancaster
  • Mobilities.Lab
  • School of Design