Research: Projects & Venues

PROJECTS

Present

-2018-ongoing. An uncommon city: Bodily diversity and the activation of possible urbanisms (Habilitation book project)

-2020-ongoing: xcol, an ethnographic inventory (co-curator)

A digital inventory––co-curated with Adolfo Estalella (Complutense University of Madrid)––for the documentation of inventive forms of ethnographic inquiry, which seeks to intervene in current forms of anthropological practice and learning.

Its initial development was funded by the Laboratory of Experimental Visual Anthropology (LAAV) of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Castilla y León, Spain (MUSAC). PIs: Adolfo Estalella & Tomás Criado.

The project was awarded the Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) ‘Making and Doing‘ Award 2021

-2021-2022. Trash Games – Playing with the Circular Economy Transition at the Haus der Materialisierung (collaborative research project)

A multimodal interventive project on game design as an experimental form of public engagement with science and technology. Funded by the Berlin University Alliance’s call for Experimental Science Communication Laboratories. PI: Vera S. Rotter, Recycling engineering, TU Berlin; Co-PI: Tomás Criado, Stadtlabor for Multimodal Anthropology, HU Berlin.

Stadtlabor’s anthropological research and game design team: Petra Beck, Sebastian Quack, Ignacio Farías & Tomás Criado.

Past

-2015-2018: Accessibility Values: Disability rights movements, political regulations and market devices in the design of urban democracy in Europe (Individual research project)

An ethnographic research project (involving fieldwork, interviews, and archival work) on inclusive urbanism struggles and the creation, implementation, maintenance and supervision of sidewalk democracy projects in Europe, with a focus on Barcelona and Spain. Funded by: Assistant Professorship of Participatory Technology Design (Exzellenzinitiative), Munich Center for Technology in Society, Technical University of Munich .

– 2012-2014. Participatory experiences in the design of independent living technologies & services (Postdoctoral project at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)

An ethnographic research project on different practices of participatory & collaborative design for ‘independent living’ and urban accessibility, taking part as a member of the “En torno a la silla” design collective. Funded by: An Alliance 4 Universities postdoctoral fellowship; and the Spanish National R&D programme 2011-2014 “Political Action of Groups Concerned with the Promotion of Independent Living in Spain (EXPDEM)” (CSO2011-29749-C02-02) research project.

– 2007-2012. The logics of telecare: The fabrication of ‘connected autonomy’ in telecare for older people (PhD in Social  Anthropology, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid).

The result of an ethnographic project on home telecare devices for older people in the region of Madrid (Spain), in which I focused on the practices of implementation and use of such devices & services through which certain articulations of ‘users’ as well as care relations and spaces emerged out. Funded by: FPU-UAM 2007-2011 PhD fellowship; FP7 project  2007-2010 “Ethical Frameworks for Telecare Technologies for older people at home (EFORTT)“; and Spanish National R&D programme 2008-2011 research project “Technology and attention to dependence: An analysis of the psychosocial effects of telecare’s implementation” (CSO2008-06308-C02-01/SOCI).

COLLABORATIVE VENUES

-2019-ongoing: Stadtlabor for multimodal anthropology at the Chair of Urban Anthropology, HU Berlin (Director)

A research platform at the HU Berlin where anthropologists interested in contemporary urban issues explore multimedia formats of knowledge production and intervention in collaboration with other urban actors. We think it is crucial to start blurring the boundaries between practices or formats of knowledge production and those of city-making. Hence, we explore conceptual, speculative and material tools, such as games or archives, to respond to the current crises of modern urbanism.

-2019-ongoing: Intersticios. Una indagación sobre las artes del encuentro [Interstices: An inquiry into the arts of togetherness] (co-instigator)

A collaborative digital platform in Spanish to experiment––in cooperation with Gonzalo Correa (Universidad de la República, Uruguay)––with conceptual registers inquiring on interstitial matters and the complex arts of togetherness.

-2016-2021: Collaboratory for ethnographic experimentation – #Colleex (founder & co-convenor)

#Colleex /kɒli:ɡz/ – An EASA network that aims to open a space for debate and intervention around experimental forms of ethnographic fieldwork. It seeks to explore novel forms of knowledge production for anthropology.

MAIN THEMES

Anthropology & STS (materio-semiotic & post-ANT perspectives)

 Ecologies of support (more–than–human care arrangements and their design, installation, use, maintenance/repair, or re-design; institutional, market, DIY, collaborative, or open-source infrastructures; the politics and ethics of care through different personal and urban/environmental ecologies of support; environmental issues and interspecies relations)

 Techno-scientific activisms (self-experimentation, and the experience-based challenge and democratisations of expertise; open design how-to/tutorial culture and other activist archives of experience; tinkering with documentation, and the production of encounters to elicit and discuss bodily diversity and the environmental/material affordances to host it)

– Re-learning (from) design (developing engagements with and through design towards inventive forms of public engagement and world-making, from which we could re-learn what it means to practice our anthropological inquiries; together with how the social sciences–STS and anthropology in particular–could ‘intravene’ in design education by generating pedagogic situations in which their methods and readings could contribute to  different processes of un-learning and re-learning how to be a design professional)

Anthropological experimentation (multi-modal invention; re-designing anthropology’s methods to undertake experimental modes of ethnographic and non-ethnographic inquiry, such as joint problem-making with our epistemic partners, with a particular attention to DIY digital platforms, meeting and learning formats, and modalities of playful engagement, such as game design)