Advisor: Pedro Lopes
Jasmine Lu is a Ph.D. student and NSF Graduate Fellow at the University of Chicago. Through her work, she explores how we might build the future of interactive technologies to be more sustainable and engage users in ecological thinking. For instance, her most recent work, “ecoEDA: Recycling E-waste During Electronics Design” at ACM UIST’23, explores how an electronics design tool could facilitate the process of recycling e-waste. Additionally, she serves on the ACM SIGCHI Sustainability Committee, focusing on sustainability in prototyping practices. Jasmine’s work has been covered by the New Scientist, Gizmodo, Forbes, and Communications of the ACM.
As interactive devices have become increasingly interwoven and necessary in our lives, we expect them to be fast, small, and ubiquitous, catering to our every need. In fact, when we think about our relationship to interactive devices, we primarily think of ourselves as users. This encourages an extractive relationship, in which we use devices without much reflection of the larger impacts of our use, such as over 50 million tons of devices ending up as electronic waste every year—the world’s fastest-growing consumer waste stream.
In my research, I explore approaches in engineering and designing interactive devices that foster alternative user-device relationships. To do so, I engineer and study interactive artifacts that encourage people to be more than just users or consumers of electronic devices and instead, engage also as caretakers, upcyclers, and maintainers of their devices. Through this research, I explore how we might design a future of interactive devices to encourage ecologically minded engagements between human users, devices, and even other organisms.