Assistant Professor in Science & Technology Studies.
Researching the impact excluded users have on the shaping of sociotechnical infrastructures.
Currently an assistant professor in Science and Technology Studies at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, I acquired my doctorate from the Department of Science and Technology Studies at University College London (UCL). My dissertation focused on the development of large sociotechnical systems, such as the public transport network, and how they are shaped and moulded by marginalized and excluded users.
For the past five years, I have focused on issues of transport accessibility for wheelchair users, researching how users' voices are (or aren't) included in the process of technological and infrastructural development.
My doctoral research explored the relationship between wheelchair users and the London transport system, and the inclusion mechanisms these users develop in order to navigate a network in which they are marginalized. It asked, “How do wheelchair users use public transport in London?” My fieldwork consisted of a series of interviews with wheelchair users and policy-makers, and observations of Garage Open-days and wheelchair skills training courses. My thesis was submitted in March, and defended in June 2017. You will find a summary of the thesis, as well as the thesis itself, in my "Research" page, under "Accessibility in Transport".
- Sociology of technology
- Disability studies
- Infrastructure studies
- Cyborg sociology/anthropology
- Feminist technoscience
- Standards and classification in governance
Previous academic experience
As a graduate in Sociology (Université de Nantes, France, 2012), I was introduced to the world of Science and Technology Studies (STS) when I attended the ESOCITE conference in Buenos Aires in 2010, where discussions focused on using science and technology for social inclusion in Latin America. I became interested in the social dimensions surrounding videogame production and gameplaying, particularly gender representations and “gaming addictions”.
My interests turned to the world of medicine and biotechnology as I undertook courses in bioethics and comparative sociology, resulting in empirical research on immigrants' definitions of and engagement with traditional Chinese and Western medicines. For my last semester in undergraduate studies, I went to study in Universitá di Roma Tre, Italy, through the ERASMUS programme where I took up courses on the sociology of deviance and developmental psychology.
I moved to London for my Master's, which I completed at the London Centre for the History of Science, Medicine and Technology (a partnership between UCL-STS and the Centre for the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine, formerly at Imperial College London and currently at King's College London). My dissertation was titled, “How to get on (with) a bus: a pilot study of wheelchair users’ engagement with buses and research”. It explored the world of public transport, particularly London buses, from the perspective of wheelchair users and accessibility. This theme was then expanded in my current doctoral research.