Sarah Pink Refiguring Techniques

Published on Dec 14, 2016

Refiguring Techniques: technologies, possibilities, emergence and an ethics of responsibility in visual-digital research

Sarah Pink

In this talk propose and discuss a way of thinking about the contemporary context of digital and visual research confronted by the Refiguring Techniques symposium. Existing, imagined and emerging technologies are creating new possibilities for digital-visual research design and practice. These include new forms of mobility, perspective, engagement, sharing, collaboration and engagement. They are emerging in an environment where scholars and researchers are increasingly called on to, and in many cases wish to, create a more engaged, applied, public or activist way of doing and sharing research. This raises four key questions, which I will open up for exploration and discussion:

What does the technological possible mean for digital-visual research? How do researchers refigure techniques with new and emerging technologies?
What do refigured techniques mean for an ethics of responsibility in digital-visual research?
How can we harness such refigured techniques to engage digital-visual technologies for making or ensuring better futures?
How can this help us to work with other organisations to gain understandings that will enable us and them to better judge how we move on into our digital futures?

Sarah Pink is the Director of the Digital Ethnography Research Centre and Distinguished Professor of Design and Media Ethnography at RMIT University. Sarah’s approach brings together digital ethnography and design to engage with contemporary issues and challenges through a dialogue between applied and academic research and practice. She works with academic and industry research partners internationally and has collaborated across different fields including design, engineering and arts and documentary practice. Her core research expertise is in: digital technologies in everyday life; environmental sustainability; consumer improvisation; safety; and human experience and perception. Sarah is also an international leader in innovative digital, visual and sensory research and dissemination methodologies.

Recent methodological books include Digital Ethnography: principles and practice(2016), Doing Sensory Ethnography (2015), and Doing Visual Ethnography(2013). Public dissemination projects include the Energy and Digital Living web site (2014) and co-authored Un/Certainty iBook. New books for include Future Anthropologies(2017), Making Homes(2017) and Theoretical Scholarship and Applied Practice(2017).

In 2016-17 Sarah is a Knowledge Foundation funded Visiting Professor at Halmstad University, Sweden. She is also Visiting Professor in Social Sciences at the Schools of Design and School of Civil and Building Engineering at Loughborough University, UK, and Guest Professor at Free University, Berlin, Germany.

Her research has been funded by national research councils in Australia, UK, Sweden and Spain, and the EU, and through industry partnerships and other organisations.

We investigate how people experience the digital in everyday life, By researching from the ground up we bring fresh insight to a constantly changing world. The Digital Ethnography Research Centre DERC focuses on understanding a contemporary world where digital and mobile technologies are increasingly inextricable from the environments and relationships in which everyday life plays out. DERC excels in both academic scholarship and in our applied work with external partners from industry and other sectors.
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