John worked in the School of Design between January 2017 and December 2020, when he moved to the University of Edinburgh.
John is Professor and Chair of Design Informatics in the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh. He co-direct the Institute for Design Informatics, the University’s interdisciplinary centre for expertise on designing data-driven technologies.
John’s training is in industrial design but his research sits at the intersections of interaction design, human-computer and human-data interaction, user experience, social gerontology, participatory research, public service design, and studies of social media. Since 2004, he has been conducting design research on the topic of technology for later life and transitions across the life course. This has involved working on a range of projects designing digital technologies and services for and with older people – such as developing tangible and physical interfaces for ‘information appliances’ for later life socialisation, designing banking technologies for those who rely on others to help them with their shopping, and exploring intergenerational voluntary care services with groups of young and old caregivers and recipients. More recently his research interests have expanded into other areas where new technologies are greatly impacting peoples lives, including personal and community healthcare, civic engagement, personal and community finance, and social justice. His research often draws on participatory approaches, and he has a strong interest in understanding the ethical and unintended consequences of emerging technologies as they become adopted and resisted by people.