Eventful Friday 29th of November

Updating the blog have been kind of low on our list of priorities, although some of us (cough cough Björn) could perhaps have mentioned a few projects starting. But here is a blog post of events taking place on the 29th of November that yours truly were part of.

The morning began with a breakfast seminar at Stockholm School of Economics, Reducing Academic Flying, were Daniel and I (Elina) presented our research project Decreased CO2-emissions in flight-intensive organisations: from data to practice. It was a diverse set of people in the audience, students and researchers, from among other places KTH, EECS, Stockholm university and Karolinska Institutet. Despite us saving half the time for questions, we could have easily spent more time discussing this topic. We were also invited to come back when we have come further in the project.

At the end of the seminar, when we throw the questions back to the audience. Foto by Cecilia Katzeff

In the afternoon, we hosted a Repairing and mending event in Middla, our division’s maker space, as a response to Black Friday (here’s an article in Landets Fria regarding the event). The event was originally inspired by a Facebook event called ”Mellandagslagning” and we had an open invitation to bring something that needed fixing, and then perhaps we could together, and with the tools at hand in Middla, figure out how to fix it. And it was a success, here are some of the things that got fixed: two pair of pants, a bag, a knitted sweater, socks, a trainer, two pairs of sandals, un umbrella and earphones. There were also some upcycling, where a soda can got turned into a Christmas decoration. Even those who couldn’t for some reason fix their thing (for example because there were something missing), enjoyed it anyway, because they had started to fix it. There was also a consensus that it was enjoyable to hang around talking while fixing things, and that we will do it again in the spring. A warm thank you to Judith and Jonathan that fixed the event with me and to everyone that showed up! Hope to see you there next time!

Some things getting fixed or upcycled. Or someone that mended something forward! Foto: Elina

Lunch presentation at Accedo

During January – March 2019, the course Sustainable ICT in Practice were taught for the third time by me, Elina. This year there was low number of students taking the course, but the engagement was high. Besides the regular lectures and seminars, the students did a project work where they investigate how an (ICT/Media) organisation today works with sustainability in their core business. This year we had two student groups and two volunteer organisations, Wikimedia (which Aleyda Rocha Sepulveda and Nahida Islam interviewed) and Accedo (which Akash Menon, Kauã Melo, and Silvan Zeller interviewed). 

As a result of that project work, the student group and I, were kindly invited to give a lunch presentation at Accedo today, the 4th of April. I gave a short introduction to Sustainability and ICT, and the students (Akash and Silvan) presented results from their project work. The presentations were well received and were followed by a Q&A session. There were many things that was interesting in the students’ work, and they presented recommendations to Accedo. The role of Accedo as a developer of video streaming services, which are used by some of the leading video service providers worldwide is both an opportunity (for example as a form of dematerialisation) but also a risk – since new services can lead to increased need for infrastructure (as discussed in Daniel’s recent blogpost). I am happy that Accedo invited us and showed such interest in the students’ work. Hopefully we can keep in touch and continue to learn together.

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Akash and Silvan presenting results from their study.

It is always a bit sad when the course has ended, I think I learn almost as much as the students during the course. Exactly how IT/media organisations can work with sustainability in their core business is still an open question – hence the students have to creatively explore this topic.  From my point of view I feel gratitude for being able to teach the course, and I extend a warm thanks to the organisations volunteering to be scrutinised, the guest lecturers who have come to the course, and my brilliant students!

 

//Elina

Vitiden – an energy fiction

This Thursday the 7th of December, 2017, Green Leap (which includes team members and previous team members),  launched the book Vitiden – an energy fiction. The event started with a short presentation of the book from several of the members of the project team, followed by a panel discussion with three invited guests; Pella Thiel (transition movement), Staffan Laestadius (professor emeritus from KTH) and Carlos Lopes (the Swedish Energy Agency).

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The book is not only beautiful, it is also easy to recycle and is printed on recycle paper.

There was some forty participants mingling the afternoon and early evening away, and lots of interesting discussions on energy, the energy system and a transition to a more sustainable society.

The book can be downloaded as a PDF from KTH DiVA.

/Elina

80 glorious percent

Today our team member Hanna Hasselqvist had her 80% seminar, which for those unfamiliar with the concept, like a general repetition and milestone one year before the dissertation. Rob Comber was the opponent at the seminar, and he did an excellent work on giving feedback to Hanna. Congratulations Hanna!

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Rob and Hanna, and lots of presentation tech. 

/Elina

MID4S ♥ Valtech

The 27th of January, Hanna Hasselqvist and Elina Eriksson were invited to speak at Valtechs lunch seminar on the topic of ICT and Sustainability. The event was fully booked with some 40 attendees. Besides some basics in ICT4S, Hanna and Elina also presented some findings from a couple of research projects.

But, the exchange did not stop there, because the 20th of February Anna Uleander, working with user experience design & sustainability, came to KTH, and gave a guest lecture in our course ”Sustainable ICT in Practice”. The presentation was well received by the students, and there were many questions and comments posed to Anna.

Hopefully this will not be the last exchange with Valtech, who have come a long way to integrate sustainability thinking in their business.

//Elina

Global Development Lunch

Daniel, Cristi and I (and many other KTH employees and some students) were at a lunch meeting yesterday on the topic of how KTH can contribute to global development and to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. More specifically, the plan is to launch a Global Development Hub, which as a first step will provide courses with a challenge-driven approach (read more about challenge driven education in this guide) in collaboration with a few partner universities in Sub-Saharan Africa. The idea is that there will be exchanges where students from KTH and the partner universities visit each other and work, preferably together, on projects related to global challenges in specific local contexts.

If you have experiences of working with developing countries or challenge-driven education or are interested in being involved in KTH Global Development Hub you can send a one-page description of who you are, what you do, and what you have done/want to do. Send the description to erika2@kth.se.

/Hanna

Visit by Blevis and others

Today Ph.D. student Anders Lundström presented his thesis ”Designing Energy-Sensitive Interactions – Conceptualising Energy from the Perspective of Electric Cars” and we had various celebrities visiting us:

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Opponent: Ron Wakkary, professor, School of Interactive Arts and Technology Simon Fraser University, Canada
Examination committee:
Eli Blevis, professor, School of Informatics and Computing, Indiana University, USA
Elisa Giaccardi, professor, TU Delft, Netherlands
Johan Redström, professor, Designhögskolan Umeå universitet
Substitute:  Associate professor Cecilia Katzeff, Centre for Sustainable Communication, KTH, Stockholm

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As part of coming to visit us, we ask our visitors to give short talks and Eli, Elisa and Ron gave three 30-minute talks earlier during the day:

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Eli Blevis, ”Design in the Age of Climate Change”

Professor of Informatics | School of Informatics and Computing (SoIC), Indiana University Bloomington

Visiting Professor of Interaction Design | School of Design, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Eli Blevis is Professor of Informatics in the Human-Computer Interaction Design (HCI/d) program of the School of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University, Bloomington. He is also a Visiting Professor at the Hong Kong Polytechnic School of Design. His primary area of research, and the one for which he is best known, is sustainable interaction design. His research also engages visual thinking—especially photographic foundations of HCI, and design theory—especially transdisciplinary design.

Elisa Giaccardi, ”What It’s Like to be a Thing in Design”

Professor of Interactive Media Design
, Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology

Elisa Giaccardi is full professor of Interactive Media Design at the Department of Industrial Design Engineering, and one of the recipients of the TU Delft Technology Fellowship for top female scientists. Her background brings together humanities, digital media, and interaction design. She is the editor of Heritage and Social Media (Routledge, 2012), in which she uses heritage as a lens to understand how emerging information and communication technology and services are changing the way in which people participate in the assessment and passing on of the ‘things we value’. Her work on metadesign has been foundational, among other initiatives worldwide, to the Metadesigners Open Network. Her design work has been referenced in several publications including The Tuning of Place by Richard Coyne (MIT Press, 2010), and has been featured by Peter Wright and John McCarthy in Experience-Centered Design: Designers, Users and Communities in Dialogue (Morgan & Claypool, 2010) together with that of Jayne Wallace and Bill Gaver.

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Ron Wakkary, ”Things of Practice”

Professor | School of Interactive Arts and Technology, Simon Fraser Universty

Ron Wakkary is a Professor in the School of Interactive Arts and Technology (SIAT) where he established the Everyday Design Studio, a design research studio that explores interaction design. Wakkary’s research investigates the changing nature of interaction design in response to everyday design practices like home life, DIY, amateur experts, hobbyists, and sustainability. In the spirit of design research, Wakkary aims to be reflective and generative, uncovering new and emergent practices of design that help to shape both design and its relations to technologies

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All three talks concerned different aspects of design, but only Eli Blevis’ talk was also about sustainability. What I found most interesting was Blevis’ graphical representation of the relationship between design in relation to the past, the present and the future:

  • past: design criticism, how design may be understood
  • present: critical design, design that makes you think
  • future: critical design, ”design that matters”. What matters for our future is what design ought to be about

Blevis also re-connected his talk to his ”original” 2007 paper and the following themes (that ”kicked off” Sustainable HCI):

  • linking invention & disposal
  • promoting renewal and reuse
  • promoting quality and equality
  • de-coupling ownership and identity
  • using natural models and reflection

One thing I personally found interesting was that Blevis ended his talk by referred to his 2012 paper on ”Collapse informatics” and on ”collapse” as a key (likely) scenario for the future (that we should consider/design towards). He also briefly discussed the predominant strategy of ”mitigation” in relation to the elephant in the room, ”adaptation”.

 

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