My research interests include digital rhetoric, social user experience, disaster communication, and archiving. I am interested in how people use social media to sort through data, share information with their communities, and validate knowledge. For more information about my work, you can view my c.v.
My research has been funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and my home institutions. These funded projects include Archive What I See Now, the Digital Dissertation Depository, Analyzing Ojibwe and Cherokee Manuscripts: Proof of Concept for a Digital Archive, and others.
My scholarship has been published in Technical Communication Quarterly, Kairos, the Journal of Business and Technical Communication, Technical Communication, Participations: The Journal of Audience and Reception Studies, SIGDOC, and others.
My book, Social Media in Disaster Response, examines the use of platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Wikipedia, and news sites during times of crisis. This work focuses on social media use during natural disasters, mass shootings, and terrorist events. It includes 10+ years of research on the topic of user experience and communication during extreme situations. As a member of the first graduating class of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, this work has become even more immediate and important to me.
My second book is an edited collection focused on user experience and cultural practices, produced with my co-editor, Michael Salvo. Supported by positive reviews from Jakob Nielsen and Donald Norman, Rhetoric and Experience Architecture is available now.
My third book is a digital project titled Participatory Memory: Fandom Experiences Across Time and Space. Written with co-authors and built in our lab at Michigan State University, this book examines how people participate in memory making activities involving their fandoms in physical spaces.
My recent projects in our lab include:
- Circulating Knowledge. This project expands on my earlier work in disaster communication, focusing on how platform technologies and policies affect people’s experiences of knowledge production and distribution. Our work is just starting to come out, and you can take a look at our team’s most recent piece on Dark Patterns.
- Disaster Communication. This book was the outcome of a 10-year usability study of how people communicate across digital spaces during times of disaster. Take a look at my c.v. to reference the many articles, proceedings papers, book chapters, and presentations about this work.
- Participatory Memory. This project is focused on understanding collective memory produced by a grassroots, participatory culture, specifically looking at how people celebrate and mourn across physical and digital spaces. This project has resulted in a digital book project titled Participatory Memory: Fandom Experiences Across Time and Space and my extensive work as the Caretaker of Sherlockian.net. As the project leader for Sherlockian.net, I lead a team of curators, students, developers, and advisors as we manage a robust portal with hundreds of pages and curated links dedicated to the international Sherlock Holmes community.
- Digital Archiving. With the support of the NEH, our project team has conducted preliminary research for creating a network of digital dissertation authors. We are hard at work on a solution that we will launch in early 2019. This area of focus also includes the NEH-sponsored Archive as I See It Now project and the IMLS-sponsored Analyzing Ojibwe and Cherokee Manuscripts work. For the former project, our team is building technologies that will allow digital humanities scholars to live archive events as they happen online. Example events include the Olympics, acts of terrorism, and product releases. For the latter project, we built prototypes for language learners and archivists.
- Organization structures of and oppositions to organizations led by and created for woman. Through projects conducted with the founders of Ladies that UX, 221B Con, and Women in Technical Communication, this project seeks to understand how organizations created by women and aimed largely at an audience of women are organized and managed. Our outcomes include white papers, journal articles, and proceedings papers.
If you are a graduate or undergraduate researcher interested in working with me, you need to be eager to succeed, an advocate, and committed to our work. I look for students who are engaged, curious, and a little rebellious. Join us at WIDE Research!