summer institute 2020 logo

13th - 16th July 2020

Questioning and defining the (new) role(s) of computation on the mediation of Human Interactions.

The Digital Media Summer Institute is a virtual immersive 4-day event aimed at the collaborative development of research projects.

A small group of people will be selected to participate in this program where four leading international researchers will tutor them, providing guidance and valuable insights into their research. Each day, the program will begin with an online keynote. The keynotes are open to the general public, but there will be limited places, and previous registration is mandatory.Participants of the summer institute will be guaranteed a spot.

During the day, participants will have one-on-one time on a private session with the tutors where they will receive guidance on their projects. Group chats and activities with the participants will also take place during these 4 days. Participants will be selected according to their topics of research and work, and each will be assigned a tutor (each tutor will have 3 students under their wing).

Participants can look forward to strengthening their scientific approach by looking at their research from new, fresh perspectives, and by asking new and unconventional questions. Participants will also have the opportunity to build a community, share ideas, and collaborate with each other and with the instructors.

Apply Here!!!
(Also, check our scholarship opportunities!)


The program is in GMT +1

Day 1 - 13/07/20 Day 2 - 14/07/20 Day 3 - 15/07/20 Day 4 - 16/07/20
10 am: Welcome - Introductions 10 am: Open Keynote by Ben Stopher + Q&A 10 am: Open Talk by Denisa Kera + Q&A 10 am: Open Talk by Massimo Menichinelli + Q&A
Individual Work Individual Work Individual Work Individual Work
2 pm: mini-workshop 2 pm: mini-workshop 2 pm: mini-workshop 2 pm: mini-workshop
Individual Work Individual Work Individual Work Individual Work
Individual Tutoring Meeting Individual Tutoring Meeting Individual Tutoring Meeting Individual Tutoring Meeting
7 pm: day review - group meeting 7 pm: day review - group meeting 7 pm: day review - group meeting 7 pm: day review - group meeting
Reviews / Feedback / Goodbye party


These are our amazing tutors:

Denisa Kera

photo of denisa kera

Dr. Denisa Kera is a philosopher and designer that researches blockchain and algorithmic governance issues. She experiments with different methods on how to implement ethical and regulatory guidelines into the technical infrastructure and how to engage stakeholders in decision-making through prototyping. Currently, she is a Marie Curie Research Fellow at BISITE, University of Salamanca.

Design (design methods, food design, design fiction, speculative design, participatory design, philosophy and design), Citizen science, Open Science, Blockchain, Algogovernance, Smart Contracts, Future of Automation, Open Hardware/IoT (familiar with Hyperldger Fabric, NodeRED, JS).

Massimo Menichinelli

denisa kera

Massimo Menichinelli, Research Fellow at RMIT University, is a designer and researcher who works on open, collaborative, and co-design projects and the systems that enable them since 2005: Fab Labs, Maker movement, Open Design and collaborative design processes. Massimo has given lectures and workshops in various countries, developed Fab Labs, published several books, scientific articles and managed European projects.

Making, Digital Fabrication, Design Processes, Networks, Collaborative Design, Community, Social Networks, Open Design, Peer-to-peer, Distributed systems, Research through Design, Open Source, Open Innovation.

Pedro M. Cruz

denisa kera

Pedro Cruz is a data visualization and information design researcher who explores new metaphoric and figurative ways to portray information. He was a visiting PhD student at MIT Senseable City Lab and earned his PhD from the University of Coimbra. Currently he is an Assistant Professor at Northeastern University in Boston, heading the Information Design and Visualization Program, and the Co-Lab for Data Impact.

Information Design, Data Visualization, Generative Design, Computational Art, Autonomous Agents, Artificial Life, Typography, Semiotics, Design Process.

Sven Meyer

photo of sven meyer

Sven Mayer is a postdoctoral researcher at the Carnegie Mellon University in the Future Interfaces Group. His research is about modelling of human behaviour patterns for interactive systems. Here, he focuses on how to go from simple touch interactions to hand- and body-aware interactions.

HCI - general, Interaction Techniques, Enhanced Touch Interaction, Controller-less Interaction for AR and VR, Capacitive Sensing, Machine Learning for Human-Computer Interaction

Open Talks

The talks are open to everyone, but you will still need to register for the ones you wish to attend.

Main Keynote by Ben Stopher

photo of ben stopher

Creative Tools, Methods and People

In this talk Ben will explore experimental tools developed in his research and in the work of the UAL Institute for Creative Computing research team. He will reflect on how computational tools mediate much contemporary experience and how he explores this as a co-author of the forthcoming book “Living with Digital Interfaces".

Click here to register for this open talk.

Open Talk by Denisa Kera

Philosophical Exorcism with Prototypes

The different calls for critical, speculative, more-than-human, but also participatory and open design force us to include the philosophical questions of the subject, consciousness, agency, but also society in prototyping. Prototypes become forms of philosophical inquiry that explore novel functions beyond user, human-centred, UX, and interaction design. These material and conceptual engagements “exorcise” the technologies and their complex genealogies, including the present political and social contexts, and invite us to think of design as future- and world-making. All philosophical concepts, such as idea, substance, consciousness, object, sign, or phenomenon were once prototypes that supported novel ways of thinking, communicating, and ultimately interacting with the world. To explore the various ways of combining design with philosophy, we will read Ovid's Metamorphoses as IoT scenarios, etch Renaissance prints as circuits, and make social networks based on Aristotle's theory of friendship. We prototype Nietzsche's hammer, Heidegger's pitcher, the strange clocks in Descartes and Leibniz, but also Neurath's boat. Should we read the Hegelian "owl of Minerva" and Kantian "light dove" as biohacking and husbandry proposals? Should we transform the numerous architectural visions of Popper's "bold structure" above swamp piles and Kant's "island of truth" into urban design proposals?

Click here to register for this open talk.

Open Talk by Massimo Menichinelli

Platforms, networks, and impact of open, distributed and collaborative design and making processes

The integration of open source and peer-to-peer systems with the design practice and research has generated many changes and opportunities for developing new kinds of projects. An important example in this direction can be found in the distributed networks of collaborative design and making, especially present in the Maker Movement and in Open Design projects. This presentation will explain to them, and especially how they are supported by digital platforms, how new networks are created from them, and how we can understand the impact of all these new actors and phenomena.

Click here to register for this open talk.


Application Form:

!!! Applications will close on June 28th. !!!


The registration fee for the immersive Summer Institute is 360 euros.

Scholarships Available

We are offering scholarships. You can apply for a scholarship when you register through the application form.

Selection Criteria

The tutors will be responsible for selecting the candidates they wish to work with.

Organizing Committee

Ana Marta Flores, André Rocha, Carla Nave, Nuno Correia, Paulo Nuno Vicente, Teresa Romão

Contact Us

For any inquiries please send an email to [email protected]