The workshop was supported by the Society and Information Research Group (SIRG) in the Communication & Systems Department (Faculty of Maths, Computing and Technology) at the Open University.
Dr Magnus Ramage is a lecturer in information systems at the Open University. He has a background in information systems, with a PhD from Lancaster University in computer-supported cooperative work evaluation. From 1997-2000, Dr Ramage was the organiser of a series of thirteen workshops on legacy systems as part of EPSRC’s managed researched programme Systems Engineering for Business Process Change. His research interests include the lives and work of the key systems thinkers and the nature of information across multiple disciplines. He is co-author of the book Systems Thinkers, a guide to the major thinkers in the field of systems thinking, published in 2009 by Springer; and co-editor of the reader Online Communication and Collaboration, published in 2010 by Routledge. With David Chapman, he was editor of a book on the nature of information across a range of disciplines, Perspectives on Information, published in 2011 by Routledge. He also has several journal and conference papers in the fields of information systems, systems thinking, computer science and organisation theory. He is an associate member of theme 2 (Reframing the Nation) of the Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change.
Dr David Chapman is
a Senior Lecturer, a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of Institution of Engineering
and Technology, and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He was a design engineer
working on optical fibre communication systems with Plessey Telecommunications
before joining the Open University in 1986, where he completed a PhD in Optical
Fibre Networks and contributed material on telecommunications and ICT to a wide
range of courses. Having served as Director of the ICT Programme Committee and
Head of the ICT Department, he is now developing his research interests into
the nature of information, reported in his Intropy blog.
Professor Chris Bissell is Professor of Telematics, a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He has been responsible for Open University teaching materials on telecommunications, control engineering, media studies, and other ICT topics. He was Head of the ICT Department for nine years from 1996 onwards. His major research interests are in the history of technology, mathematical modelling, and engineering education, on which he has published widely. He is also active in quality assurance in higher education.
Dr Hugh Mackay is a Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Social Sciences. His research is in the sociology of technology, and is generally qualitative or ethnographic. He is interested in the co-construction of technology and culture and in particular how users shape technology. More recently he has focused on new media technologies. He is interested in how multi-channel television and the digital environment are transforming contemporary culture. Based in Cardiff, he has a particular interest in the Welsh media and Welsh media policy, particularly regarding the transformation of the media environment with the growth of digital. He has conducted qualitative research on the domestic uses of the Internet, examining how the Internet connects with everyday household life, and how both are transformed as the technology is taken up. He has just completed an AHRC-funded Public Policy Fellowship at the BBC World Service where he has been exploring the implications for organisation and practice of the shift to social media, and especially the uses of social media monitoring tools..
Derek Jones is a Lecturer in Design with the Open University and module chair for U101: Design Thinking, the innovative and award winning Level 1 entry course for the university’s Design and Innovation degree. His research interests include: the education and development of creativity in education, Building Information Modelling (BIM) design processes in practice and education, Virtual architecture and place, Archetypes in architecture. Derek is also a qualified architect with over 15 years of experience in the construction design and procurement industries. He is currently an architect and BIM Manager for Keppie Design based in Glasgow, Scotland. In his spare time, Derek is also an Associate Lecturer with the Open University.
Dr Mustafa Ali is a Lecturer in the Computing Department at the Open University. He has a background in artificial intelligence, with a PhD from Brunel University in computational philosophy. His current research focuses on the development of a hermeneutic framework that can be used to inform critical investigations of computational, informational,cybernetic, systems-theoretical and Trans-/Post-human phenomena. The framework is grounded in phenomenology, critical race theory and post-colonial thought and is being used to analyse computational social science phenomena (multi-agent systems), power relations within digital politics/activism and discourses on the “digital divide”. Previous research interests include the artificial sciences (AI, A-Life and virtual reality), philosophy of mind (process models of consciousness), conceptual foundations of emergence, and philosophy of technology (artefact ontology).
Dr Andrea Berardi is a Lecturer in Environmental Information Systems at The Open University. He divides his time between producing distance teaching material in environmental management, and undertaking research to promote ecological sustainability and social justice. His areas of expertise include human ecology, community-based natural resource management, systems thinking and visual/spatial communications. He is currently leading a major research work package in the European Commission funded COBRA project (http://projectcobra.org/).