Keynote Speakers

Anne BurdickAnne Burdick is the chair of the graduate Media Design Practices (MDP) Department at Art Center College of Design, where she has invested deeply in defining the future of graduate-level education and research in design. Burdick is co-author and designer of Digital_Humanities (MIT Press, 2013), “a compact, game-changing report on the state of contemporary knowledge production.” Learn more.

Keynote: Digital Humanities Design Questions
In the Media Design Practices program where I teach, we ask our students to identify a design question that will guide their thesis work. Like any good research question, a good design question is both specific and open-ended enough to allow new forms and ideas to emerge. But unlike other forms of research, it can only be pursued through the embodied, material activity of designing. This talk will introduce a number of design questions specific to the digital humanities.


Tony DunneAnthony Dunne is Professor of Design and Emerging Technology at Parsons/The New School, and a partner in the design studio Dunne & Raby. Between 2005-2015 he was Professor and Head of the Design Interactions program at the Royal College of Art in London. His work with Fiona Raby uses design as a medium to stimulate discussion and debate amongst designers, industry and the public about the social, cultural and ethical implications of existing and emerging technologies. Learn more.

Keynote: From Technological Futures to Alternative Worldviews
Can design serve as a catalyst for interdisciplinary imagining? There is plenty of knowledge available on how to develop and build new technologies, but how do we go about building new worldviews made from values, beliefs, hopes, fears and dreams?

In my talk I will use examples from our studio and student projects to discuss a way of designing and its possible intersections with the humanities, which focuses on developing alternative technological narratives to those being put forward by the tech industry and media. An approach which aims to provoke thought and further imagining rather than communicate a vision of how things will or should be.


Kelly Baker JosephsKelly Baker Josephs is Associate Professor of English at York College, CUNY, and Sterling Brown Visiting Professor of Africana Studies at Williams College. She specializes in World Anglophone Literature with an emphasis on Caribbean Literature. She teaches courses in Anglophone Caribbean Literature, Postcolonial Literature and Theory, Literatures of the African Diaspora, and Gender Studies. Professor Josephs is Editor for sx salon: a small axe literary platform and runs The Caribbean Commons. Learn more.

Keynote: Caribbean Considerations: Audience and Access in Digital Humanities
What are the critical considerations – practical, ethical, idealistic – in designing a digital platform for Caribbean Studies content? Kelly Baker Josephs will discuss how scholars in the field have navigated these concerns in a range of Caribbean-centered digital projects, particularly those focused on pedagogy and publishing.


Jentery SayersJentery Sayers is Assistant Professor of English at the University of Victoria. His interests combine comparative media studies with design, prototyping, and archives. He is the editor of The Routledge Companion to Media Studies and Digital Humanities (Routledge), Making Things and Drawing Boundaries (U. of Minnesota P.), and Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities (MLA, with Davis, Gold, and Harris). Learn More.

Keynote: Is Design Bad for Media History?
Researchers of media history frequently voice concerns about scholarship with charged or palpable design elements, expressing value judgments about the role applied media aesthetics play in representations of the past. What motivates these concerns, and to what effects on scholarly communications? How is design not only a feature of publications and collections but also a mode and field of historical inquiry? This talk addresses these questions with an emphasis on “prototyping the past,” where matters of design prompt attention to the contingencies of archival materials and biases of history.


Digital Humanities Facilitators

Alexandrina AgloroAlexandrina Agloro is a game designer, community-based researcher, and media artist who believes in the possibilities of the decolonial imaginary using digital media as an emancipatory tool. She is an Assistant Professor of Interactive Media and Game Development at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Learn more.



Miriam PosnerMiriam Posner coordinates and teaches in the Digital Humanities program at UCLA. She also serves on the executive committee of the Association for Computers and the Humanities. A media scholar who’s interested in science and technology, she is finishing up a book, Depth Perception, on American medical filmmaking (under contract with UNC Press) and is working on a new project related to supply-chain capitalism. Learn more.


Jessica Marie JohnsonJessica Marie Johnson is an Assistant Professor of History at Johns Hopkins University. Johnson holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in History from the University of Maryland, College Park and a B.A. in African & African American Studies from Washington University in St. Louis where she was also a Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellow. Her research interests include women, gender, and sexuality in the African diaspora; histories of slavery and the slave trade; and digital history and new media. Learn more.


TrettienWhitney Trettien is a scholar, creator, and teacher whose work weaves together archival research and creative use of technologies. She has written and designed work in the fields of book history, Renaissance literature, media archaeology, sound studies, and digital humanities. She has a PhD from Duke University, an MS from MIT, and is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at UNC Chapel Hill. Learn more.


Rachel Sagner Buurma is Associate Professor of English Literature at Swarthmore College, where she works on print culture, the history of the novel, literary informatics, and book history. Her work has recently appeared in Representations, Victorian Studies, and New Literary History. With Laura Heffernan (University of North Florida) she is writing a new disciplinary history of English studies; with Jon Shaw (University of Pennsylvania Libraries) she co-directs the Early Novels Database. Learn more.



Design Facilitators

Tad HirschTad Hirsch is an associate professor of interaction design at University of Washington in Seattle. His research focuses on interaction design in urban environments with a strong emphasis on advocacy and civic engagement, and often involves collaboration with NGOs and community-based organizations. Learn more.



Mimi OnuohaMimi Onuoha is a Brooklyn-based artist/researcher, writing and creating art about data collection. She is Research Resident at Eyebeam and something-in-resident at NYU ITP. She is currently thinking about and creating work around missing datasets. Se is also interested in Data collection, as well as geographic and digital spaces. Learn more.



Matt RattoMatt Ratto is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto and directs the Semaphore Research cluster on Inclusive Design, Mobile and Pervasive Computing and, as part of Semaphore, the Critical Making lab. His work explores the intersections between digital technologies and the human life world, with a particular focus on new developments that trouble the divide between online and offline modes of production. Learn more.


Daniela RosnerDaniela Rosner is an Assistant Professor in Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) at the University of Washington.  Rosner’s research combines design, computing, and fieldwork to reveal the social conditions and cultural values that shape and are shaped by digital technology. Learn more.



Molly SteensonMolly Wright Steenson is an associate professor in the School of Design and is the chair of the Doctor of Design (D.Des) program. She researches the history of design, architecture, computation and artificial intelligence from the 1950s to the present, and is the author of the forthcoming book The Verb of Architecture: A History of Architects and Digital Designers in a Computational Age (MIT Press, 2017). Learn more.