Anticipating the role of smart technologies in the dynamics of everyday life - Lenneke Kuijer

Visiting speaker Lenneke Kuijer, Assistant Professor in the Future Everyday Group at the Industrial Design Department of Eindhoven University of Technology will give a short talk about 'Anticipating the role of smart technologies in the dynamics of everyday life' at the Emerging Technologies Research Lab in Caulfield on Thursday 13 February 2020.

The rise of smart technologies has both pros and cons. This project combines sociology and design research to develop new theory to better understand the changing role of smart technologies in everyday life. This theory aims to help researchers and designers in the field of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) to better anticipate future opportunities and risks during the design process.

The project develops this theory in a Research through Design (RtD) process drawing on Social Practice Theory (SPT) and the concept of co-performance. SPT conceptualises the recursive relation between situated human behaviour and socially shared ideas of appropriate practice. It shows promise for making the changing role of technologies in everyday life insightful for HCI, but currently centralizes human agency and focuses on historic change.

To develop this potential, the project draws on the concept of ‘co-performance’, which positions smart technologies next to humans as co-performers of social practices. The Research through Design (RtD) approach develops SPT/co-performance into a future-oriented theory through an iterative process of designing probable, possible and preferable future practices of summer comfort in the Netherlands. Summer comfort is chosen as a case because of its emergent character, high social complexity and risks for public health, utility costs and energy demand.

The visit to Monash aims to contribute to both the theoretic aspect of the project (concerning the role of nonhumans in social practice dynamics) and the empirical aspect of the way households deal and have dealt with hot weather.

Lenneke Kuijer is Assistant Professor in the Future Everyday Group at the Industrial Design Department of Eindhoven University of Technology. Since the start of her PhD research in 2008, Lenneke has worked at the touching points of social practice theories, design and domestic energy demand. She did her postdoc in the DEMAND Centre at the University of Sheffield (UK). Over the past four years, her focus has been on the HCI community and in particular the relation between ‘smart’ technologies (and their design processes) and changes in everyday life. She recently won a prestigious personal grant from the Dutch Research Council (NWO), which allows her to go deeper into these relations, and to visit Monash University


Date: Thursday 13 February 2020

Time: 12 -1pm

Venue: Monash University Emerging Technologies Research Lab, Caulfield campus

Email: emergingtechlab@monash.edu