MA Narrative Environments

People / PhD Students / Katrin Ho

I am an interdisciplinary designer with experience in Interaction Design, UI/UX Design, Data Visualisation, Creative and Physical Computing. I graduated with a Master degree in Information Experience Design (Experimental Design) from Royal College of Art, London, in 2019; I acquired a Bachelor degree in Communication Design from FH Aachen, Germany, in 2017.
My design research stems from my interest in the augmentation of physical spaces with digital content, specifically to empower citizens in local decision-making through cyber-physical systems. As a part-time PhD student, I aim to create urban interventions which challenge current power hierarchies and provoke new imaginations of socially sustainable environments.

Research Description

How to foster democratic systems through the design of participatory digital artefacts in the public realm
This practice-led research aims to enable marginalised communities to better discuss political issues within their municipality through the use of physical-digital objects, allowing citizens to share and exchange their perspectives in the public realm. The expansion of Euston Square Station, London, which demands place-based community engagement, will offer a valuable test bed to help explore how a physical-digital public display of opinions on local developments can influence the perception across diverse social communities which are affected by gentrification.
Using ethnographic, ethnomethodological and design research methods, including co-design workshops involving the Somers Town community, Camden Council and Lendlease in collaboration with the social platform Make @ Story Garden (CSM), issues such as sociocultural differences of perception and affordances of shared interactive physical-digital objects in public space will be explored.
By showing the multiplicity of public opinion through a physical assembly of individual perspectives, the developed prototypes will act as socio-material assemblies that can help investigate the possibility of revitalising the urban and to facilitate public civic engagement through spontaneous and playful communication in public space.
It also analyses the role of designers as catalysts and facilitators of empowerment during participatory political design processes.

Discipline: Interaction Design