Information and communication technologies are integral to our world. Digital engineers, designers, and computer programmers are the inventors and innovators of our time who greatly affect people’s everyday lives – and they need the assistance of anthropology in making human-friendly solutions. The symposium explores how digital designers and anthropologists benefit from each other’s knowledge and approaches. What is the role of culture in technology? How can technology-based thinking be humanised? And how can we get the most out of new technologies for those that use them?
DAY 1, Friday, 4 November 2016 (location: Dorpat Conference Centre, Turu 2, Tartu)
Sten Tamkivi is the CEO of Teleport, Inc, a company that moves you to your best place to live and work. Prior to co-founding Teleport he served at Skype as an early executive, riding the roller coaster for over 8 years from startup to ~300M active users. Sten started his entrepreneurial career founding the first digital media agency in Estonia at the age of 18 and has stayed on the forefront of internet, user experience design and software development scene since 1996.
Dimitris Dalakoglou is Professor of Social Anthropology at VU University Amsterdam. He studies material infrastructures ethnographically since 2004. In his most recent book ‘The Road’ (2016) he shows that infrastructures are primarily socio-cultural entities rather than merely an object of civil engineering or politics. Until 2014 he ran the project ‘Crisis-scapes’ studying urban spaces and infrastructures during the crisis in Athens. Beyond his academic publications he has co-produced 4 documentaries based on his research, whilst his work is featured regularly in international media outlets.
Melissa Cefkin is a Principal Scientist & Design Anthropologist at Nissan Research in Silicon Valley. She is a leader in examining and building solutions for a future with autonomous vehicles (self-driving cars) as interactive agents in the world from a social and technical standpoint, a bit of which is reflected in her piece Human Machine Interactions and the Coming Age of Autonomy. A long-time observer and participant in the growth of anthropological research in and with business, Melissa is the author of numerous publications including the Ethnography and the Corporate Encounter (editor, Berghahn Books 2009) and served as president and conference co-chair (among other roles) for EPIC. She is a committee member for the United States National Academies of Science project on Information Technology, Automation and the Workforce. A PhD from Rice University and a former Fulbright scholar, she worked previously at IBM Research, Sapient and the Institute for Research on Learning (IRL).
Daniel Miller is Professor of Anthropology at University College London. He is a Fellow of the British Academy. He has written and edited thirty-seven books. Recent volumes include ‘Social Media in an English Village’ (2016), ‘How the World Changed Social Media’ (2016), ‘Webcam’ (2014), ‘Digital Anthropology’ (2012), ‘Migration and New Media’ (2012), ‘Tales from Facebook’ (2011), ‘Stuff’ (2010), and ‘The Comfort of Things’ (2008). Daniel currently directs the project ‘Why We Post’, which investigates the use and consequences of social media. He tweets at @DannyAnth
Throughout the day, our co-organisers and sponsors will present themselves at the Intercultural Hotspot. Do not miss the opportunity to mingle with enthusiasts representing all sorts of different ‘tribes’ – anthropologists, IT experts, marketing specialists, designers, artists. Go ask anyone – that’s how great ideas are born and partnerships created!
with the symposium’s keynote speakers Sten Tamkivi, Dimitris Dalakoglou, Melissa Cefkin, and Daniel Miller.
Dan Podjed, Convenor of EASA Applied Anthropology Network
PARTY (location: Estonian National Museum, Muuseumi tee 2, Tartu, Estonia)
DAY 2, Saturday, 5 November 2016 (location: Apaaraditehas, Kastani 42, Tartu)
Day 2 of the symposium is intended for all of you who are eager to put theory into practice. During workshops combining insights from anthropology, design, IT industry, art, and marketing, you’ll develop prototypes, projects, and campaigns – in just a day! Here’s the list of workshops you’ll be able to choose from:
IDEA GARAGE: ANTHROPOLOGY MEETS TECHNOLOGY (Garage48 Workshop)
The aim of the workshop is to encourage participants to propose and validate new technological ideas with the help of mentors in the field of anthropology. By the end of the workshop, you’ll know what it takes and how to turn an idea into a business model in the field of anthropology.
HUMANISING OPEN DATA (Antropologerne Workshop)
This workshop is based on activities in the Open4Citizens project, which aims to empower citizens to make meaningful use of open data. It is intended to lower the barriers to participation in solution creation by guiding participants from all backgrounds and with various skills through a co-creation process from idea to prototype. This includes guidance in accessing, understanding and using open data.
START YOUR OWN INTERDISCIPLINARY PROJECT (DriveGreen Workshop)
This workshop provides recommendations to participants who wish to apply for interdisciplinary research and development projects and gives tips on cooperation and leadership in teams, consisting of people from various disciplines and operating in and outside academia. The DriveGreen project, where engineers and anthropologists in cooperation with an industry partner are developing a smartphone app for promotion of sustainable mobility, is used as an example to illustrate how an interdisciplinary project proposal can be prepared, how the specific management challenges can be met, and how the planned development goals can be reached.
CREA: EXPANDING ETHNOGRAPHIC BOUNDARIES BY CROSS-DISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION WITH DESIGN AND CREATIVE METHODS (IADE ID:CO.LAB Workshop)
The workshop presents the importance of cross-disciplinary collaboration and interdisciplinary approaches between anthropology and design for applied and innovative results / designs. With the help of different creative design methodologies, the workshop explores ethnographic research results data as inspiration to support and sparkle the design exercise: ideating and conceptualizing the main concepts or concrete solutions for further development of research projects or to design products / systems.
APPLYING ANTHROPOLOGY IN THE CONSULTANCY CIRCUIT, STEP 1: UNDERSTANDING YOUR CLIENT AND TASK (AnthroAnalysis Workshop)
This workshop is aimed at those with a background or an interest in anthropology as a professional practice beyond the university and will introduce the use of anthropology in consultancy work, focusing on the first steps (analyze clients, stakeholders and tasks, begin to plan research, prepare for the development and presentations of recommendations).
Registration is now open. Check http://
ORGANISING COMMITTEE: Meta Gorup, Jaanika Jaanits, Helleka Koppel, Liset Marleen Pak, Merilin Piipuu, Dan Podjed, Keiu Telve, Laura Valli
ADVISORY BOARD: Lawrence Agbemabiese, Ellen Bal, Sandra Bell, Alenka Bezjak Mlakar, Simone Borile, Carlo A. Cubero, Lu Ann De Cunzo, Jurij Fikfak, Carla Guerrón Montero, Duška Knežević Hočevar, Kristin Kuutma, Art Leete, Rajko Muršič, Desirée Pangerc, Jaka Repič, Klāvs Sedlenieks, Peter Simonič, Giulia Sinatti, Ülo Valk, Rhoda Woets