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Advanced Training - Interface Methods

Wed 24th June 2015 | 9:30am-6pm | Ramphal and Social Sciences Building | University of Warwick, Coventry

Please note: this event is part of a wider event “Interfaces: Method and Critique for Designed Cultures” and will be followed by a second day on “interface criticism”. If you wish to attend both or one of the Interface Methods and Interface Criticsm event/s, please indicate so on the registration form.

Interfaces mediate any number of social issues and practices, from financial trading, business performance and ‘smart’ cities, to teen bullying, child literacy, and the construction of gender. Every social, economic or political practice that relies on a computer screen or other technical device, whether this be a Bloomberg terminal, a ‘performance dashboard’, an organization website or a social media platform, is worked over by an interface. As the goal of many interfaces is to be invisible, seamless or intuitive, and since they require specific forms of expertise and design literacy in order to be studied, they are often ignored in social science research. And yet, as culture becomes ‘datafied’ and screens of all sorts are embedded and naturalized in urban and domestic settings, it is clear that the study of interfaces can no longer be left to designers or film and media scholars. The work of interfaces, and indeed interface work, is now central to the social sciences and humanities. This training event will ask, how can we conduct research with interfaces? That is, how can we incorporate but also develop interfaces as part of our research? Further, how can we study culture and society through a focus on interfaces?

This advanced training event will consist of two sessions, which will focus on:

1) research methods that draw upon interfaces to study the formation and dynamics of political issues, and
2) methods to make the design of interfaces visible for research.

In addition there will be two keynote lectures from leading experts in the theoretical study of interfaces, a roundtable discussion and a networking evening meal.

The event is for current PhD candidates (but others are welcome to apply) and is open to anyone across the social sciences and humanities whose work engages with interfaces.

Attendance is free, but places in the workshop sessions are limited. Lunch will be provided. Ten travel bursaries of up to £200 are available to help with travel and accommodation for participants outside of Warwick University.

Confirmed participants:

Orit Halpern (The New School, author of Beautiful Data)
Nathaniel Tkacz (CIM, University of Warwick)
Christian Ulrik Andersen (Aarhus University, editor of Interface Criticism)
Søren Bro Pold (Aarhus University, editor of Interface Criticism)
Olga Goriunova (CIM, University of Warwick)
Noortje Marres (CSISP, Goldsmiths)
Hendrik-Jan Greivink (Art Director and Designer, Next Nature)
Carolin Gerlitz (Digital Methods Initiative, University of Amsterdam)
Michael Dieter (CIM, University of Warwick)


To register to take part in this exciting event (and/or the Interface Criticism event) please complete the registration form.