Public Lecture hosted by BSU RCEH; ACI: Animals as co-designers of Multispecies Technologically Supported Ecosystems; By Clara Mancini, founder of the Open University’s Animal–Computer Interaction Lab; Weds 10th April, Commons Newton Campus

ACI: Animals as co-designers of Multispecies Technologically Supported Ecosystems

By Clara Mancini, Open Univeristy 

Wednesday 10th April 2019, 6.00pm-8.00pm (drinks to follow).

Commons G24, Bath Spa University, Newton Saint Loe, Bath, BA2 9BN 

From laboratories to open fields, from farms to cities, animals have interacted with technology for nearly a century, usually as cogs within scientific and economic production apparatuses. The emerging field of Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) aims to change the focus of animal-machine interactions by recognizing animals as primary stakeholders, users and co-designers in these interactions, and by placing them at the centre of the design process. Introducing some of the projects that Clara’s colleagues and she have been working on at The Open University’s Animal-Computer Interaction Laboratory (ACI Lab), Clara will discuss the need for and the benefits of such a shift, as well as the design, methodological and ethical implications of animal-centred design. Throughout her presentation, Clara will endeavor to demonstrate ACI’s potential to reconfigure human-animal relations towards the development of more sustainable ecosystems.

Dr Clara Mancini is a Senior Lecturer in Interaction Design at The Open University’s School of Computing and Communications. She is the founder and head of The Open University’s Animal–Computer Interaction Lab, has been principal investigator on a number of ACI projects and has supervised a range of ACI doctoral research, including ubiquitous and ambient interfaces for mobility assistance and medical detection dogs, interactive enrichment for captive elephants, and wearable animal biotelemetry. Her work has been published in the leading interaction design and ubiquitous computing venues, and she has lectured on ACI nationally and internationally. Clara was general chair for the ACI 2016 and ACI 2017 conferences, in co-operation with the Association for Computing Machinery and Minding Animals International, and in 2017 she was lead guest editor for the first ACI Special Issue, in the International Journal of Human-Computer Studies. Clara is interested in the design, methodological and ethical challenges, and innovation opportunities, presented by ACI, and is committed to demonstrating ACI’s potential to contribute to animal and human wellbeing, social inclusion, interspecies cooperation and environmental restoration.

ACI: Animals as co-designers of Multispecies Technologically Supported Ecosystems

Author: Owain Jones

I work at Bath Spa University as a Professor of Environmental Humanities, and I am Director of the University's Environmental Humanities Research Centre

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