Community science and DIY

Our transdisciplinary research is centered around public engagement with science and technology. Using methods from human computer interaction (HCI), engineering, speculative design, and philosophy of technology we study how people understand and participate in science beyond professional settings.

We develop low-cost, DIY (Do It Yourself) systems for creative science work in contexts such as hackspaces, art studios, garages, homes, schools, or across social media platforms. We deploy sociotechnical interventions to support democratic participation and engagement with scientific issues. We explore new ways of sharing the discoveries, artistic expressions, and civic activism that emerge from amateur science work.

Biology beyond professional settings

Our team of biologists, designers, and engineers are studying DIYbio (Do It Yourself Biology) as a subdomain within the maker movement. We are developing:
open science hardware tools for DIYbio
bioart classes and workshops to support public engagement with science
Food as a platform for everyday science

We focus on practices that counter mass-production and engage with concepts from microbiology, botany, biology, chemistry, and food science. We are researching:
solar cooking as creative engagement with food science and climate change
food science such as fermenting, brewing, pickling, foraging, or dumpster diving
Interactive materials

DIY fabrication paves the way for making, reconfiguring, and appropriating systems for scientific inquiry. Our work includes:
screenprinting techniques to create new interactive and smart materials
3D printing with materials such as food, ceramics, and glass
Extreme heat and climate change


Phoenix is one of the hottest locations on earth, and it presents a testbed for understanding and addressing climate change. Our work examines:
adaptation and mitigation strategies for resilience in the face of extreme heat
thermal-sensing tools to understand the impact of heat on local communities

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