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IxD Professor Audrey Desjardins awarded by the National Science Foundation 

Submitted on March 6, 2023 - 3:33pm
Audrey Desjardins
Audrey Desjardins Portrait by Leo Carmona

Audrey Desjardins, Associate Professor of Interaction Design (IxD) at the University of Washington School of Art + Art History + Design, was awarded the Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) Award in February 2023. An initiative of the National Science Foundation (NSF), the CAREER award is one of the most prestigious awards for early-career faculty members, providing funding for research. Desjardins, who is also the Design Graduate Program chair, will receive a grant over the next 5 years to research physical representations of data in the context of the home. 

The project, Physicalizing Small Data: A First-Person Approach to Examining IoT Data, will bring technologists and artists together to design new ways for people to explore the data they generate through smart devices. A fast-growing global market, the home Internet of Things (IoT) market includes smart home cameras, speakers, motion sensors, watches, and more. These devices not only provide one of the most important new ways to collect data about people, but also operate in a particularly private space – the home. With today's growing concerns of data privacy, this research project aims to empower individuals to take control over their own data and become more aware and engaged participants in the data economy while advancing knowledge around data visualization and sense-making.  

This is the third time Desjardins has been recognized by the NSF and the second CAREER Award granted to faculty at the School of Art + Art History + Design. In November 2022, Desjardins was honored with NSF’s Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier, a grant to explore childcare workers, while her colleague James Pierce, Assistant Professor for Interaction Design, received the CAREER Award. Read more about these awards in the College of Art & Sciences November 2022 issue.

Traditionally granted to faculty in STEM, this CAREER award is not only a big accomplishment for Desjardins, but a significant win for the Division of Design at the School of Art + Art History + Design, whose mission is to advance the field of design through research, practice, and education. Congratulations to Audrey! 

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