In this design research project, I examined how the residents of areas imminently threatened by climate change anticipate local environmental changes from scientific projection data. From research carried out among coastal communities in Key West, U.S.A. and Happisburgh, U.K., I found that even in locations anticipated to be greatly affected by sea level rise and coastal erosion, local interaction with scientific projection data is limited as a result of its complex, uncertain, and global nature. To understand whether more meaningful interactions with this data might be designed through crafting first-hand, embodied experiences with the materiality of the coastal environment, I designed a format with which laypeople can build their own DIY sea sensors to gather situated knowledge about climate change and form hands-on engagements with projection data.
I hosted a series of workshops in Key West, Florida with local high school students in which they built and tested their own sea sensors. The students will keep and use their sensors in their own chosen locations and gather their own data.
Sea Sensing was the final project for my MA in Interaction Design at Goldsmiths, University of London. It was exhibited at St. James Hatcham Gallery. My full dissertation can be viewed here.
Happisburgh research documentation: