5 February, 2021 at 2-3.30 pm, EST
Christopher Le Dantec, Associate Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology
Brief Bio: Chris Le Dantec is an Associate Professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, jointly appointed in the School of Interactive Computing and the School of Literature, Media, and Communication. He teaches in the Digital Media, HCI, and Human-Centered Computing programs. Through the Participatory Publics Lab (PPL) at Georgia Tech, he works with students and community members to build sociotechnical systems that support collective action through community and civic engagement by practicing participatory design, co-creating new artifacts and technical forms with community members to assert identity, to contend with local issues, and to respect community emotions, beliefs, and desires. His research touches a number of different domains, including: Human-Computer Interaction, Computer-Supported Cooperative Work, Social Computing, Urban Informatics, Science and Technology Studies, Participatory Design, Design Research.
Book Abstract: Contemporary computing technologies have thoroughly embedded themselves in every aspect of modern life -- conducting commerce, maintaining and extending our networks of friends, and mobilizing political movements all occur through a growing collection of devices and services designed to keep and hold our attention. Yet what happens when our attention needs to be more local, collective, and focused on our immediate communities? Perhaps more important, how can we imagine and create new technologies with local communities? In Designing Publics, Christopher Le Dantec explores these questions by designing technologies with the urban homeless. Drawing on a case study of the design of a computational infrastructure in a shelter for homeless women and their children, Le Dantec theorizes an alternate vision of design in community contexts. Focusing on collective action through design, Le Dantec investigates the way design can draw people together on social issues and create and sustain a public. By "designing publics" he refers both to the way publics arise out of design intervention and to the generative action publics take -- how they "do design" as they mobilize and act in the world. This double lens offers a new view of how design and a diverse set of design practices circulate in sites of collective action rather than commercial production.