Tracy Ross, Loughborough University
From: ITS in Social Media, 18 June 2012, Savoy Place, London
18 June 2012 Transport channel
Social media plays a significant part in grassroots or 'bottom-up' innovation in transport. It can play a role as a catalyst, an enabler but also as a community-builder.
The process of innovations of this kind show some quite novel features when compared with traditional transport innovations, particularly in how the end-user plays a part in the innovation itself.
This presentation will focus on the ways in which social media can play a role in engaging with the end-user to generate ideas, enabling them to act as beta-testers and, particularly, harnessing the possibilities provided by user-generated data. With the inevitable ubiquity of smartphones serving as always-networked, always-located personal devices, what else might be possible in the transport system of the future?
Tracy has a BSc in Ergonomics from Loughborough University. Her expertise is in the user-centred design of technology-supported innovation. Her research experience crosses several application domains but with a particular focus on transport, mobile and social systems.
All of her research has been conducted in collaboration with commercial partners and clients to ensure the end user is provided with usable, safe and valued systems. She has worked with partners across Europe and in the UK on public and private funded projects.
Her current research is focused in two main areas: (i) how user-centred design approaches can support the generation and development of grass-roots (user-developed) innovations for sustainable transport and (ii) the real-world impact (on safety and mobility) of transport innovation delivered via personal mobile devices. The emergence of social networking (e.g. Facebook); easily distributed user-generated innovations (e.g. iPhone applications) and user-generated content (e.g. OpenStreetMap) presents both challenges and opportunities for the future of user-centred design research.
Tracy is planning ongoing research in this area, especially techniques with which to engage with end users in creating innovations with social value.