The conversation series "Histories of Digitization" explores the cultural, historical, and material dimensions of contemporary digitization in architecture and urbanism. It is a cooperation between the Chair of Architectural Informatics and the Chair of Theory and History of Architecture, Art and Design.
The third event "Critical Fabulations" discusses feminist approaches towards computation and design. Daniela Rosner and Catherine D’Ignazio question the familiar narratives of innovation within digital design practices. Taking personal and material perspectives into account, they offer a critical discussion on the ambiguities of digital technologies and enable the ‘fabulation’ of alternative histories.
Daniela Rosner is an Associate Professor in Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) at the University of Washington. Her research investigates the social, political, and material circumstances of technology development, with an emphasis on foregrounding marginalized histories of practice, from maintenance to needlecraft. She has worked in design research at Microsoft Research, Adobe Systems, Nokia Research and as an exhibit designer at several museums, including the Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum. Rosner's work has been supported by multiple awards from the U.S. National Science Foundation, including an NSF CAREER award. She is the author of several articles on craft and technoculture, including “Legacies of craft and the centrality of failure in a mother-operated hackerspace,” Journal of New Media & Society, 2016 and “Binding and Aging,” Journal of Material Culture, 2012. In her book, Critical Fabulations,(link is external) she investigates new ways of thinking about design’s past to rework future relationships between technology and social responsibility (MIT Press, 2018). Rosner earned her PhD from the University of California, Berkeley. She also holds a BFA in Graphic Design from the Rhode Island School of Design and an MS in Computer Science from the University of Chicago. Rosner serves on the Editorial Board of Artifact: Journal of Design Practice and as the editor of the “Design as Inquiry” forum for Interactions Magazine, a bimonthly publication of ACM SIGCHI. Along with Professor Beth Kolko, Rosner co-directs HCDE's Tactile and Tactical Design Lab (TAT Lab).
Catherine D’Ignazio is an Assistant Professor of Urban Science and Planning in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT. She is also Director of the Data + Feminism Lab which uses data and computational methods to work towards gender and racial equity. D’Ignazio is a scholar, artist/designer and hacker mama who focuses on feminist technology, data literacy and civic engagement. She has run reproductive justice hackathons, designed global news recommendation systems, created talking and tweeting water quality sculptures, and led walking data visualizations to envision the future of sea level rise. With Rahul Bhargava, she built the platform Databasic.io, a suite of tools and activities to introduce newcomers to data science. Her 2020 book from MIT Press, Data Feminism, co-authored with Lauren Klein, charts a course for more ethical and empowering data science practices. Her research at the intersection of technology, design & social justice has been published in the Journal of Peer Production, the Journal of Community Informatics, and the proceedings of Human Factors in Computing Systems (ACM SIGCHI). Her art and design projects have won awards from the Tanne Foundation, Turbulence.org and the Knight Foundation and exhibited at the Venice Biennial and the ICA Boston.