Using Digital Tools for Transformative Change
serving our publics
Community Engaged Digital Scholarship
Across my scholarship, I work to explore how people understand the risks posed by digital technologies to marginalized peoples and groups. A core component of my work is the belief that storytelling—particularly stories of human experience—can both highlight the ways in which technologies are discriminatory and envision new relationships between humans and digital objects. As reliance on digital technology continues to grow, the need for scholarly interventions into the (mis)use of data, the development of tools, and the dissemination of information is increasingly necessary.
AREPR: Supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Archivo de Respuestas Emergencias de Puerto Rico (AREPR) is a freely available Omeka S site that depicts and describes the innovative knowledge production of grassroots community organizations in Puerto Rico in the wake of both natural and man-made disasters. The project is a collaboration between the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras, the University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez, Michigan State University, and the Digital Library of the Caribbean.
Artifacts include those pertaining to Hurricane María (2017), the Guayanilla earthquakes (2019-2020), and COVID-19 (2020). We see these artifacts as necessary to preserve the stories of survivors within our cultural memory; they also highlight effective disaster response strategies, counter inaccurate media narratives about Puerto Rico, serve as an educational resource about climate change and colonialism, and provide a meaningful resource for the public.
Makers by Mail: Often bound by a specific geography and context, traditional makerspaces can face accessibility issues from a number of vectors—cost, location, audience, and material are only a few. These factors can make it difficult to live out minimal computing’s ethos of maximum justice, which asks practitioners to reduce the use of technological, cultural, social, and economic barriers to increase entry, access, participation and self-representation and build systems/projects premised on social justice.
The Makers by Mail project responds to this call by 1) providing technology education that is accessible and affordable for individuals and groups with limited access to other makerspace programs and 2) focusing on developing relationships with traditionally marginalized groups.
SurvDH: Surveillance + Digital Humanities is a community of scholars dedicated to exploring the relationship between surveillance and the humanities, using an anti-colonial framework to analyze the ethics surrounding physical and digital surveillance methods, such as the use of algorithms, biometrics, social media, search engines, smart devices, and DNA. We examine the ways in which communities experience surveillance differently, based on factors such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and socioeconomic status by developing work (research, digital projects, tutorials, lesson plans, etc.) that encourages the ethical treatment of all members of our community.