- Read Posts by Ian Lowrie
- I'm currently a doctoral student in the sociocultural program at Rice University, and the editor of Platypus, the CASTAC blog. I work on data science and computational neuroscience in Russia and the United States.
- Contributing since November 30, 2012
CASTAC Co-Chairs and Contributors
- Read Posts by Nick Seaver
- I'm an anthropologist who studies how people use technology to interpret, reproduce, and circulate sound. My current book project is titled Computing Taste: The Making of Algorithmic Music Recommendation, based on a long-term ethnographic study of the developers of music recommender systems. In previous research, I've studied the history of the player piano and experimental music.
- Contributing since April 10, 2013
Angela Kristin VandenBroek
- I am a PhD Candidate in Sociocultural Anthropology at Binghamton University under the direction of Dr. Douglas R. Holmes. I combine my anthropological expertise with more than eight years of experience in web development and design to investigate cultures of expertise that generate around making and working with web and other digital technologies. I am particularly interested in the ways that experts think through and among complex sociotechnical systems that necessitate epistemic practice with both knowable and unknowable factors. My dissertation research explores this topic within digital public diplomacy in Sweden.
- Contributing since January 2, 2012
Patricia G. Lange
- Read Posts by Patricia G. Lange
- Patricia G. Lange is an Anthropologist and Associate Professor of Critical Studies (undergraduate program) and Visual & Critical Studies (graduate program) at California College of the Arts in San Francisco, California. Her work focuses on technical identity performance and use of video to express the self and civically engage. She is the author of Kids on YouTube: Technical Identities and Digital Literacies (Routledge, 2014). She also produced and directed the film Hey Watch This! Sharing the Self Through Media (2013) which provides a diachronic look at the rise and fall of YouTube as a social media site. Her website is: patriciaglange.org.
- Contributing since October 2, 2012
- Read Posts by Emily Brooks
- I'm a Ph.D. student in Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine, and a Graduate Research Associate with the Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center. My dissertation project investigates the science and cultural politics of slow ecological disasters through a focus on water scarcity, climate change, and applied environmental science in the Southern California desert.
- Contributing since May 9, 2014
- Read Posts by Evan Conaway
- Evan P. Conaway is a PhD student in the Department of Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. His dissertation work examines how gaming enthusiasts are using servers to preserve, memorialize, and restore virtual worlds, asking virtual space is maintained and reproduced in relation to the material technologies that create and what politics are embedded in present-day efforts to engage with the past of online game worlds.
- Contributing since July 26, 2016
- Read Posts by Rebekah Cupitt
- Rebekah is currently a post-doctoral researcher at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. Her research focuses on the intersections with deaf identity, technology, and organisations.
- Contributing since February 13, 2017
- Read Posts by Elizabeth Rodwell
- is a anthropologist of media and technology with a primary focus on Japan. Her dissertation / manuscript is on the development of interactive, social television in Japan as a tool for resistance to censorship. During the 2016-17 academic year she is a Visiting Research Fellow at Rice University, and an anthropology instructor at the University of Houston-Downtown. She also somehow works full-time as a UX Researcher for ChaiOne, in Houston, TX.
- Contributing since February 6, 2015
- Read Posts by Peter Taber
- My research focuses on biodiversity as a political and economic problem in Ecuador, with a particular focus on the complex historical and contemporary relationship between biodiversity conservation and oil development.
- Contributing since January 17, 2017
Former Co-Chair and Contributors
- Read Posts by Allison Fish
- Allison is a postdoctoral fellow with the Innovating Communication in Scholarship project at UC Davis. Trained in both law and anthropology, her research explores recent developments surrounding one key mechanism impacting access to knowledge and cultural heritage - intellectual property rights (IPRs). The project addresses the globalization and commodification of South Asian traditional medical/spiritual systems and the ramifications this has for local and international markets and legal systems.
- Contributing since February 25, 2014
- Read Posts by Yuliya Grinberg
- I am a PhD candidate in the department of anthropology at Columbia University. My work examines the expansion of self-tracking and the social impact of personal data increasingly generated by mobile applications and sensor technology. I am particularly interested in data aesthetics and the relationship between data and embodiment.
- Contributing since October 5, 2015
- Read Posts by Charlotte Linde
- Charlotte Linde is an anthropologist and linguist at NASA Ames Research Center. Her informal title is Socio-RocketScientist: probably the only one in the world.
She is the author of two books on narrative and memory: "Life Stories: The Creation of Coherence" and "Working the Past: Narrative and Institutional Memory," both Oxford University Press.
- Contributing since February 25, 2013
- Read Posts by Jasmine McNealy
- Jasmine E. McNealy is an assistant professor in the Department of Telecommunication, in the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida, where she studies information, communication and technology with a view toward influencing law and policy.
- Contributing since February 25, 2016
Luis Felipe R. Murillo
- Read Posts by Jamie Sherman
- Jamie Sherman holds an M.A. in Gender, Performance, and Religion from NYU's Gallatin School of Individualized Study (2003) and a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from Princeton University (2011). Her most recent research is on emergent and shifting practices of body, self, and technology in contemporary US society. She should be working harder to complete her ethnography of play, pain and self-transformation at an “all natural” bodybuilding gym in Brooklyn, NY, but instead she is reading and commenting on blogs.
- Contributing since April 13, 2013
- Read Posts by Emily Wanderer
- Emily is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh. She is an anthropologist of science and medicine, and her research focuses on biopolitics, biosecurity, and the multispecies turn, particularly in Latin America.
- Contributing since February 8, 2015
- Read Posts by Adrienne Young
- "Independent" scholar, MA Anthropology,George Washington U., ABD Ethology @ Michigan. Working peripherally in academia at Michigan. Interests: Popular culture, embodiment, politics, medicine, etc.
- Contributing since January 24, 2013
- Read Posts by Meryl Alper
- Dr. Meryl Alper is an Assistant Professor of Communication Studies at Northeastern University and a Faculty Associate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. Dr. Alper studies and teaches about the social implications of communication technologies, with a focus on youth and families, disability, and mobile media. She is the author of Digital Youth with Disabilities (MIT Press, 2014) and Giving Voice: Mobile Communication, Disability, and Inequality (MIT Press, 2017). Prior to joining the faculty at Northeastern, she earned her doctoral and master’s degrees from the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies and History from Northwestern University. In her research and teaching, Dr. Alper also draws on her professional experience in educational children’s media as a researcher, strategist, and consultant with Sesame Workshop, PBS, Nickelodeon, and Disney. She can be found online at merylalper.com and Twitter @merylalper.
- Contributing since April 24, 2017
- Read Posts by Sareeta Amrute
- Sareeta Amrute is Associate Professor at the University of Washington, Seattle. Her first book, Encoding Race, Encoding Class: Indian IT Workers in Berlin, was published by Duke University Press in August 2016.
- Contributing since August 19, 2016
- Read Posts by Nandita Badami
- Nandita Badami is a graduate student in Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. Her research considers the politics of sunlight as it gets enrolled into modern regimes of energy in India.
- Contributing since October 11, 2016
- Read Posts by Roberto Barrios
- Roberto Barrios is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He received his B.A. in Anthropology from the University of New Orleans in 1996 and his Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Florida in 2004. His research has explored the ways disaster-affected populations navigate NGO and governmental disaster reconstruction policies and practices, with a specific focus on how issues of personhood, embodiment, neoliberalism, governmentality, and developmentalism play out in these contexts.
- Contributing since May 25, 2014
- Read Posts by jonbialecki
- Jon Bialecki (Born 1969, JD 1997, Ph.D. 2009) is a fellow in the School of Social and Political Science at the University of Edinburgh. His academic interests include the anthropology of religion, anthropology of the subject, ontology and temporality, religious language ideology, and religious Transhumanist movements. His ethnography A Diagram for Fire: Miracles and Variation in an American Charismatic Movement is out with the University of California Press, and he is currently writing a book on the intersection of Mormonism and Transhumanism.
- Contributing since November 22, 2016
- Read Posts by Samantha Breslin
- I am a PhD Candidate in anthropology at Memorial University of Newfoundland. My research explores the "making" of computer scientists in Singapore, looking at knowledge-making practices in computer science; personal and national imaginaries about computing; local and transnational networks of computing students, professors, knowledges, practices, and curricula; and the performances and silences of gender in relation to computing.
- Contributing since December 15, 2015
- Read Posts by Nicola Bulled
- Nicola Bulled is a Fogarty Foundation/NIH post-doctoral fellow with the Center for Global Health at the University of Virginia. Her research focuses on infectious diseases in highly vulnerable and disadvantaged populations in the U.S. and southern Africa, with an aim to guide the development of culturally informed interventions and health policy.
- Contributing since October 8, 2014
- Read Posts by Charlotte Cabasse-Mazel
- Charlotte Cabasse-Mazel holds a PhD in Geography and Science and Technologies Studies from the University of Paris-Est, where she studied at the Laboratoire Techniques, Territoires et Sociétés (LATTS), at Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées. She is interested in the ways in which practices and methodologies of data science transform production of knowledge and interdisciplinary collaboration, as well as scientific personae and trajectories within the academic institution.
Her PhD research focused on the creation of hybrid communities and the transformation of subjects (both resident/expert) and space, facing risk of natural disasters in the Bay Area of San Francisco. Previously researcher at EPFL, Switzerland, she worked on research projects questioning the definition of “science”, “society”, “future” and “risk”. She also participated to join research-action project with UN Agencies (ISRD, WHO) in Madagascar.
Before going back to graduate school, she was a civil servant in French Embassy in South Africa and an NGO project coordinator for Aide Médicale Internationale (AMI) in Afghanistan and Indonesia. She also worked as a web and freelance journalist, having collaborated with French local and national newspapers.
She received her MA in Cultural Geography from Université de Reims, France; and MA and BA in Information and Communications Sciences from Université de la Sorbonne, Paris, France.
- Contributing since December 1, 2015
- Read Posts by Baird Campbell
- Baird Campbell is a PhD student in anthropology at Rice University. His research explores the intersections of social media, alternative archival practices, and trans activism in Chile.
- Contributing since February 9, 2017
- Read Posts by Melissa Cefkin
- Melissa Cefkin is a Principal Scientist & Design Anthropologist at Nissan Research in Silicon Valley where she explores the potential of having autonomous vehicles as interactive agents in the world. She completed her PhD in cultural anthropology at Rice University and has years (decades?) experience at the intersection of ethnographic and anthropological research with design, business and technical system development. Previously she worked at IBM Research, Sapient Corporation and the Institute for Research on Learning. Melissa is the author of numerous publications including the Ethnography and the Corporate Encounter (editor, Berghahn Books 2009) and served in a wide range of the leadership roles, including president and conference co-chair, for the EPIC (Ethnographic Praxis in Industry Conference) organization.
- Contributing since January 23, 2016
- Read Posts by efchurchill
- Elizabeth Churchill is Director of Human Computer Interaction at eBay Research Labs. A psychologist by training, Elizabeth has a PhD in Cognitive Science from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. Prior to joining eBay, Elizabeth led and contributed to research in Human Computer Interaction, social computing, social media and socio-technical design at Yahoo Research labs, at PARC (the Palo Alto Research Center) and FX Palo Laboratory, Fuji Xerox's lab in Palo Alto.
- Contributing since March 25, 2013
- Read Posts by Nicholas D'Avella
- Nicholas D’Avella is a postdoctoral fellow at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. An ethnographer of contemporary Argentine economic life, he is currently completing his first manuscript, Concrete Dreams: Markets, Politics, and the Lives of Buildings in Post-Crisis Buenos Aires, an ethnographic study of a construction boom following Argentina’s economic and political crisis of 2001. Based on two years of fieldwork with real estate investors, architects, and neighborhood residents, the book describes how buildings were incorporated into post-crisis practices of economic investment, and how other forms of value were made to endure in the face of buildings’ increasingly central place in Argentine economic life.
- Contributing since April 18, 2016
Madeleine Clare Elish
- Read Posts by Bilge Firat
- Trained as a political anthropologist, I research questions of access and accountability through the corridors of power. My doctoral work honed in on the political and policy negotiations and lobbying during Turkey’s contentious integration to the EU in Brussels. My current research follows energy transport infrastructures connecting Europe and Asia via Turkey in their making. I am Assistant Professor of International Studies at Texas A&M University.
- Contributing since July 17, 2017
- Read Posts by Rachel Fleming
- Rachel C. Fleming received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She studies technology, gender, work, and kinship in India and the US, particularly the impact of new jobs in information technology for women from different generations in Bangalore.
- Contributing since June 1, 2016
- Read Posts by MMF
- M.M. Foreman is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Pittsburgh, where she teaches courses on economic and political anthropology. She won the 2014 Public Anthropology Series International Book Competition with her co-author Phil Kao for "Boomtown and the Culture of American Inequality."
- Contributing since August 20, 2015
- Read Posts by Ilana Gershon
- Ilana Gershon is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University, Bloomington, and is interested in how new media affects highly charged social tasks, such as breaking up or hiring in the United States. She has written about how people use new media to end romantic relationships in her book The Breakup 2.0: Disconnecting over New Media. Her current research addresses how new media affects hiring in the contemporary US workplace.
- Contributing since March 2, 2016
- Read Posts by Martin Gibbs
- Martin Gibbs is a Senior Lecturer in department of Computing and Information Systems at the University of Melbourne. His research interests lie at the intersection between Science Technology Studies (STS) and Human Computer Interaction (HCI) with an ongoing interest in Game Studies. Current projects include: the adoption and appropriation of High-Speed Broadband in the home; Digital Commemoration; Tabletop Gaming and Social, Natural User Interfaces.
- Contributing since October 11, 2013
- Read Posts by Matt Hale
- Matt Hale is a dual PhD student at Indiana University, Bloomington within the Folklore and Ethnomusicology and Communication and Culture departments and an Associate Instructor in later department. He holds a BA in Anthropology and an MA in Folk Studies from Western Kentucky University. His research focuses on fandom and participatory cultures and popular media reception and response in general and, in particular, on the art and craft of cosplay.
- Contributing since August 9, 2013
- Read Posts by Amelia Hassoun
- Amelia Hassoun is a doctoral researcher in Sociocultural Anthropology. Her current research focuses on residents interacting with and creatively reworking the data-gathering technologies that permeate the Singaporean city-space, as well as the makers of these technologies. This project builds upon her Master's research at UCL on how values become encoded in software systems that process patient data in the NHS, as well as preliminary research with UCL's Why We Post project while an undergraduate at Yale. Before re-entering the wild world of academia, she worked as a patient website designer in London.
- Contributing since October 6, 2016
David J. Hess
- Read Posts by Heather Horst
- Heather A. Horst is a Vice Chancellor’s Senior Research Fellow in the School of Media and Communication at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, Co-Director of the Digital Ethnography Research Centre and a Research Fellow in the MA Program in Digital Anthropology at University College London. A sociocultural anthropologist by training, Heather’s research focuses upon new media, material culture, and transnational migration. She is the co-author of The Cell Phone: An Anthropology of Communication (Horst and Miller, Berg, 2006), Living and Learning with Digital Media: Findings from the Digital Youth Project (Ito, Horst, et al., 2009, MIT Press), and Hanging Out, Messing Around and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with Digital Media (Ito, et al. 2010, MIT Press). Her most recent book, to be released in October 2012, is an edited volume with Daniel Miller entitled Digital Anthropology.
- Contributing since March 26, 2013
- Read Posts by Vincent Ialenti
- Vincent Ialenti is a Mellon Fellow at Cornell University's Society for the Humanities, a U.S. National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, and a PhD Candidate in Cornell's Department of Anthropology. His ethnographic research explores how safety assessment experts working on Finland’s radioactive waste disposal project at Olkiluoto grappled with issues of deep time, death, collaboration, and succession.
- Contributing since February 27, 2016
- Read Posts by Sharon Kaufman
- Sharon Kaufman is Chair of the Department of Anthropology, History and Social Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. Her work explores topics at the intersection of medical knowledge and society’s expectations for health. Her research has examined: the changing culture and structure of US medicine; health care delivery at the end-of-life; the relationship of biotechnologies to ethics, governance and medical practice; the shifting terrain of evidence in clinical science; practices of risk assessment; and mistrust of science.
- Contributing since November 11, 2015
Ashley Rose Kelly
- Read Posts by Ashley Rose Kelly
- Ashley Rose Kelly earned her Ph.D. at NC State and will join Purdue's Brian Lamb School of Communication in August 2014 as an Assistant Professor.
Kelly's research focuses on rhetorical theory, genre theory, and science studies and has been published in Communication Monographs, Environmental Communication, and several other communication-related venues. As well, she writes for the PLOS Citizen Sci blog, Scistarter, and Discover's Citizen Sci Salon.
She has taught courses in scientific and technical communication as well as in science, technology, and society (STS).
- Contributing since April 10, 2014
- Read Posts by Ali Kenner
- My research and teaching focus on 1) environmental health and the politics of care, 2) the spaces in which health and disease are produced (homes, cities, clinics, and public health networks), and 3) how embodied experiences of health and disease are technologically mediated. My first book project has focused on the experiences of asthmatics and environmental sense. I also lead a Philadelphia-based project focused on air quality, sustainability, and health in the context of late industrialism.
- Contributing since March 20, 2013
- Read Posts by Kristina Lyons
- Kristina Lyons is Assistant Professor of Feminist Science Studies and Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She is also on the advisory board of the Science & Justice Research Center. Kristina is currently working on a book project entitled, Decomposition as Life Politics: Soil Practitioners and Vital Spaces in the Colombian Amazon. This manuscript is based on more than ten years of fieldwork in Colombia where she engaged in an ethnography of human-soil relations across laboratories, greenhouses, gardens, and farms with soil scientists in the capital city of Bogotá, and small farmers and rural social movements in the Andean-Amazonian foothills of Putumayo.
- Contributing since March 6, 2016
- Read Posts by Ben McMahan
- My work focuses on risk, resilience/vulnerability, and disaster within the context of the built environment (including energy systems infrastructure). My current focus is on climate and environmental risks in the arid Southwest, while previous work focused on hurricanes and disaster on the U.S. Gulf Coast.
- Contributing since April 19, 2017
- Read Posts by Claire Nicholas
- I am a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Human Ecology at the University of Alberta. I'm especially interested in design, design education, and craft in Morocco and North America.
- Contributing since June 16, 2015
- Read Posts by Valerie Olson
- Valerie Olson is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. She studies the making and governance of large scale environmental systems and extremities.
- Contributing since May 5, 2015
Grant Jun Otsuki
- Read Posts by Bryce Peake
- Bryce Peake is a media anthropologist, and an Assistant Professor of Media & Communication Studies at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). His research focuses on the ways political actors' somatic experiences are structured by the gendered and racialized histories of media technosciences. Bryce is currently completing a monograph about masculinity and colonial media sciences in the British Mediterranean, and has begun comparative ethnographic work in the US, UK, Malta, and Gibraltar on the somatic experiences of white nationalist infopolitics in the moments of Trump and Brexit. His work has been published in Cultural Studies, Communication & Critical Cultural Studies, and Ada: A Journal of Gender, New Media, and Technology.
- Contributing since April 15, 2015
- Read Posts by Simone Popperl
- Simone is a PhD Candidate at the University of California, Irvine. She is working on a dissertation about environmental crisis, resource extraction, and settler colonialism in the Dead Sea area.
- Contributing since February 20, 2016
- Read Posts by Andrew Schrock
- Andrew Schrock is a Ph.D candidate at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California. He primarily researches mobile collectives and the platforms that support them. He also likes thinking & talking about hackers (hackerspaces, civic data hacking).
- Contributing since March 19, 2013
- Read Posts by A.R.E. Taylor
- A.R.E. Taylor is a PhD student with the Division of Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge. His current ethnographic research draws from fieldwork conducted in data centers and explores the sociopolitical dynamics underlying the configuration of space weather and electromagnetic pulses (EMPs) as security threats to digital-industrial infrastructure.
- Contributing since June 5, 2017
- Read Posts by Alex Taylor
- Alex is a sociologist working at Microsoft Research Cambridge (UK). He has undertaken investigations into a range of routine and often mundane aspects of everyday life. For instance, he's developed what some might see as an unhealthy preoccupation with hoarding, dirt, clutter and similar seemingly banal subject matter. Most recently, he’s begun obsessing over computation and wondering what the compulsion for seeing-data-everywhere might mean for the future of humans and machines.
- Contributing since March 20, 2017
- Read Posts by Jen Telesca
- Jennifer E. Telesca is Assistant Professor of Environmental Justice in the Department of Social Science and Cultural Studies at Pratt Institute. Her research takes an interdisciplinary approach to ocean studies, spanning the interests of the human–animal relationship, science and technology, political ecology and environmental diplomacy.
- Contributing since April 2, 2017
- Read Posts by Will Thomas
- Will Thomas received his PhD in the History of Science from Harvard University in 2007. He has held postdoctoral positions at the American Institute of Physics and Imperial College London, and is currently a senior historian at History Associates, Inc. He has blogged about historiography and historical methodology at his blog, Ether Wave Propaganda, since 2008.
- Contributing since March 29, 2016
- Read Posts by Matt Watson
- Matt Watson teaches anthropology at Mount Holyoke College. He has published on cosmopolitics and the history of Maya studies in journals that include American Anthropologist, Social Studies of Science, Cultural Critique, and Theory, Culture & Society. He's now writing an archive-based experimental ethnography on Maya hieroglyphic decipherment as a scientific and spiritual practice. Although he has some Luddite tendencies, his future plans include subtweeting his way to the top.
- Contributing since May 3, 2016
- Read Posts by Everett Zhang
- Everett Yuehong Zhang is Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies and Anthropology at Princeton University. His current research compares the Tangshan earthquake in 1976 and the Sichuan earthquake in 2008, to explore how different ways of mourning the loss of life make a huge difference in producing life’s worthiness or unworthiness in China and how public grieving has become a crucial site of struggle for justice and well-being.
- Contributing since November 14, 2016