Plenary Speakers

Anne Balsamo

Anne Balsamo's work focuses on the relationship between the culture and technology.  This focus informs her practice as a scholar, researcher, new media designer, and entrepreneur.  She is currently a Full Professor of Interactive Media in the School of Cinematic Arts, and of Communications in the Annenberg School of Communications. Her first book, Technologies of the Gendered Body: Reading Cyborg Women (Duke UP, 1996) investigated the social and cultural implications of emergent bio-technologies.  Her forthcoming book Designing Culture: The Technological Imagination at Work examines the relationship between designing praxis, cultural reproduction and the technological imagination.

Suzanne de Castell

Suzanne de Castell: Professor of Curriculum and Instruction in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University, Suzanne de Castell’s work spans literacy, technology, gender, educational game theory, research, design and development , and multimodal analysis of communicative interaction. Recent co-edited work includes Worlds in Play: International Perspectives on Digital Games Research (Peter Lang, 2008), Loading...The Journal of the Canadian Game Studies Association, work on design and development of educational games (Contagion and A Baroque Adventure) and recent publications on digital games and education, gender and gameplay and multimodal learning in informal and community settings.

Ron Deibert

Ron Deibert (PhD, University of British Columbia) is Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the Citizen Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto. The Citizen Lab is an interdisciplinary research and development hothouse working at the intersection of the Internet, global security, and human rights. He is a co-founder and a principal investigator of the OpenNet Initiative and Information Warfare Monitor project.

Paul Dourish

Paul Dourish is a Professor of Informatics in the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences at UC Irvine, with courtesy appointments in Computer Science and Anthropology. He teaches in the Informatics program and in the interdisciplinary graduate program in Arts Computation and Engineering. His primary research interests lie at the intersection of computer science and social science; he draws liberally on material from computer science, science and technology studies, cultural studies, humanities, and social sciences in order to understand information technology as a site of social and cultural production. In 2008, he was elected to the CHI Academy in recognition of his contributions to Human-Computer Interaction. He is the author of "Where the Action Is: The Foundations of Embodied Interaction" (MIT Press, 2001), which explores how phenomenological accounts of action can provide an alternative to traditional cognitive analysis for understanding the embodied experience of interactive and computational systems.

Henry Jenkins

Henry Jenkins is the Provost's Professor of Communications, Journalism, and Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California and the former co-director of the Comparative Media Studies Program at MIT. He is the author or editor of 13 books on various aspects of media and popular culture, including Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide and Democracy and New Media. He blogs at His accomplishments as a public intellectual include speaking to the Federal Communications Commission, the United States Senate Commerce Committee, and the Governing Board of the World Economic Forum, as well as writing a white paper for the MacArthur Foundation on participatory culture and learning.

Jennifer Jenson

Jennifer Jenson is Associate Professor of Pedagogy and Technology at York University. She has published on girls and gameplay, gender and technology and the relationship between education and play. Her most recent publications include a book on technology policy, Education Unplugged (McGill-Queens University Press), and a review of gender and gameplay in Simulation and Gaming.

Natalie Jeremijenko

Natalie Jeremijenko directs the xdesign Environmental Health Clinic. Previously she was on the Visual Arts faculty at UCSD, and Faculty of Engineering at Yale. Her work was included in the 2006 Whitney Biennial of American Art (also in 1997) and the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Triennial 2006-7. She has a permanently installed Model Urban Development on the roof of Postmasters Gallery in Chelsea, featuring 7 residential housing developments, concert hall, and other public amenities, powered by human food waste where it continues to toy with new conceptions of urban futures, and re-imagine our relationship to nonhuman organisms. Her work is described as experimental design, hence xDesign, as it explores the opportunity new technologies present for non violent social change. Her research centers on structures of participation in the production of knowledge, and information and the political and social possibilities (and limitations) of information and emerging technologies -- mostly through public experiments. In this vein, her work spans a range of media from statistical indices (such as the Despondency Index, which linked the Dow Jones to the suicide rate at San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge) to biological substrates (such as the installations of cloned trees in pairs in various urban micro-climates) to robotics (such as the development of feral robotic dog packs to investigate environmental hazards). The Environmental Health Clinic develops and prescribes locally optimized and often playful strategies to effect remediation of environmental systems, producing measurable and mediagenic evidence, and coordination diverse projects to effective material change.

Steve Mann

Steven Mann is a tenured professor at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto. He is a proliferate inventor whose work includes wearable computing, hydraulophone, and the concept of ‘sousveillance’: “the effects a surveillance device has on others.” He is also the author of more than 200 publications, books, and patent publications. His work has been shown in numerous galleries and museums around the world, including the Smithsonian Institute, National Museum of American History, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA in New York), and the San Francisco Art Institute.

Rita Raley

Rita Raley, Associate Professor of English at the University of California, Santa Barbara, is Director of the Transcriptions Center for digital humanities/new media research. Her most recent publications include Tactical Media (Univ of Minnesota Press, 2009) and articles on locative and mobile media and text-based media arts installations. Her research also investigates relations between language and information technologies and she has published on Global English, codework and machine translation.

Trebor Scholz

Trebor Scholz is a writer, conference organizer, Assistant Professor in Media & Culture, and Director of the conference series The Politics of Digital Culture at The New School in NYC. He also founded the Institute for Distributed Creativity that is known for its online discussions of critical Internet culture, specifically the ruthless casualization of digital labor, ludocapitalism, distributed politics, digital media and learning, radical media activism, and micro-histories of media art. Trebor is co-editor The Art of Free Cooperation, a book about online collaboration, and editor of The Internet as Playground and Factory, forthcoming from Routledge. He holds a PhD in Media Theory and a grant from the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Forthcoming edited collections by Trebor include The Digital Media Pedagogy Reader and The Future University. His book chapters, written in 2010, zoom in on the history of digital media activism, the politics of Facebook, limits to accessing knowledge in the United States, and mobile digital labor. His forthcoming monograph, published by Polity Press, will offer a history of the Social Web and its Orwellian economies.

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