BCNM's Big Wins 2023

27 Jun, 2023

BCNM's Big Wins 2023

The 2022-2023 academic year has been a blast and we're thrilled to share some of our greatest achievements. Check out the new media impact we made!

Interdisciplinary Research

BCNM champions vanguard interdisciplinary research. We are especially thrilled, as a result, to announce the return of Hannah Zeavin to UC Berkeley! With the Department of History, we have been able to hire Hannah as an Assistant Professor, with a start date of July 1, 2023. Her research addresses overlooked narratives to train a historical lens on how technologies can mediate communication and distance. We're also excited to share that Asma Kazmi was promoted to Associate Professor of Art Practice and New Media. Asma Kazmi is a new media artist of intersectional identifications and orientations, who suffuses every project with a decolonizing sensibility.

Once more, we were thrilled to support our faculty in doing their amazing new media amazing work through increased research grants. This year, we've been pleased to offer faculty seed grants that have supported work by and with Indigenous communities, including Clancy Wilmott's Rematriating the Map: Alternative Cartographies for Alternative Futures, which focuses on the ever-present question of the colonial legacies in cartographic media, and the impact that this has on Indigenous efforts to decolonize the map, and fight for alternative futures, in collaboration with the Sogorea Te Land Trust. We've also been thrilled to support Celeste Kidd's work on Truth, lies, and misinformation during cognitive development, Alex Saum-Pascual's work on AI Critical Infrastructures, and Jill Miller and Asma Kazmi's work on The Missing Object Library!

We were further able to offer thirteen conference and ten summer research grants to our graduate students. We were particularly pleased to be able to support LGBTQ and POC scholars, as well as research that explores remote design collaboration, online science curricula, immersive virtual environments, language revitalization, wearables, algorithmic pattern recognition, and alternative cartographies. We also continued to offer our prestigious Lyman Fellowship, which this year went to Rashad Arman Timmons, whose work focuses on “Pedestrian Acts: Blackness, Geography, and Performances of Infrastructural Violence.”

Our students, faculty, and alumni are making an incredible impact on inclusive new media research. Research highlights include: a faculty book publication (Algorithmic Modernity, Morgan Ames), two alumni book publications (Shaping Dance Canons, Kate Mattingly; The Counterfeit Coin, Chris Goetz), and one album cover publication (Ariel Stinks, Jill Miller). They also include faculty art exhibitions (Trees, Time, and Technology, Ken Goldberg; Future Perfect, Jill Miller; Caracteres, Alex Saum-Pascual), student and alumni art exhibitions or performances (from Edgar Fabían Friás, Ra Malika Imhotep, Valencia James, Esther Jan, and Trevor Paglen). In addition, we had 52 faculty, 10 student, and 32 alumni articles published in a range of fields, including Algorithms, Art, Artificial Intelligence, Computer-Human Interaction, Data Science, East Asian Studies, Education, English, Film & Media, Gender and Women’s Studies, History, Machine Learning, Media Studies, Music, Performance Studies, Psychology, Public Policy, Robotics and Automation, Science and Technology Studies, Sociology, and User Interfaces.

Moreover, BCNM faculty, alumni, and students have been recognized with numerous awards. Clancy Wilmott was awarded a Hellman Fellowship for her innovative work on "Reorienting the Map: Alternative Cartographies for Alternative Futures." Jacob Gaboury received the 2022 Computer History Museum Prize for his book Image Objects: An Archaeology of Computer Graphics (MIT Press, 2021). The book also garnereed him an HCI 2023 History award. Eric Paulos received a CITRIS Seed Grant for “BrightBlue: Customizable, decomposable electrical energy storage” with Jennifer Parker at UC Santa Cruz. Kimiko Ryokai received a 1.29M award from NSF support rightful presence in museum spaces, working with youth designers of Indigenous mixed reality science exhibits. Jill Miller and Asma Kazmi were awarded c/change grant awards for their project The Missing Object Library. Designers of Indigenous Mixed Reality Science Exhibits. BCNM DE student Xiaowei Wang won a Science & Literature National Book Award for Blockchain Chicken Farm: And Other Stories of Tech in China’s Countryside. Alum Bo Ruberg won the Anne Friedberg Innovative Scholarship award from SCMS for Sex Dolls at Sea: Imagined Histories of Sexual Technologies (MIT Press, 2022). Faculty member Sonia Katyal won The Stu Walter Prize, Dukeminier Awards for “The Gender Panopticon: AI, Gender, and Design Justice” with Jessica Jung. Alum danah boyd received the Morrison Award from MIT Unviersity.

We continue to support Clancy Wilmott’s studio.geo? work on Rematriating the Map: Alternative Cartographies for Alternative Futures, which focuses on the ever-present question of the colonial legacies in cartographic media, and the impact that this has on Indigenous efforts to decolonize the map, and fight for alternative futures. The first iteration of this work was presented this year at NACIS 2022.

Curriculum Development

Our goal is always to offer exceptional courses on histories and futures of technology that combine arts, design, humanities, social sciences, data, and engineering approaches and foreground diverse makers and users of new media. This year, we’ve been able to support two of our faculty members as they’ve reenvisioned NWMEDIA 201 through a new experimental art studio pilot, where they’ve introduced students to new technologies being used in art today.

We are thrilled to share that Abigail De Kosnik received the Berkeley campus' most prestigious award for teaching, the Distinguished Teaching Award, which is intended to encourage and recognize individual excellence in teaching. Only 223 faculty have received the award since its inception in 1959. In addition, Clancy Wilmott was awarded a coveted Graduate Assembly Faculty Mentor Award for her commitment to her students.

Our course grants continue to provide much needed support and this year assisted with classes on sounding American, Digital Literature in the Iberoamerican World, Digital Humanities and Egyptology, War and Media, and the Experimental Art Studio.

In an exciting new development, Summer 2023 marks our first high-enrollment online summer course, the popular NWMEDIA 151AC: Transforming Tech: Issues and Interventions in Silicon Valley with Matthew Berry. The appetite for this course has been immense and the entire 200 person course filled within weeks of open enrollment!

Our aim of accelerating peer learning experiences through our undergraduate research fellowship has once again proven successful, pairing undergraduates with graduates who can mentor them on research practices (here and here). This year, we were able to pair seven undergraduates with graduates working on trans theatrical voices in Japan, identifying misinformation, sonic representations, mapping Pacific Islander filmmakers, architecture databases, hybrid learning environments, immersive virtual environments, and design collaboration tools!

We also moved back into the BCNM Commons (340 Moffitt) for our classes from our temporary space in Hearst! It's exciting to be back in the center of campus!


We had a stellar year for public programs, offering 12 events and serving over 2,000 people. These events define important and unexpected directions of research for new media scholars, engineers, artists, and policymakers, featuring a diverse range of speakers — eleven of our fourteen programs featured keynote speakers of color.

Our Indigenous Technologies public programs built on its successes, drawing attention to historical technological achievements of Indigenous groups and the potential for future technologies to be informed by Indigenous thinking. This program continues its outreach through the work of Sierra Edd, our Indigenous Technologies Coordinator, Clancy Wilmott’s Rematriating the Map project, and Kimiko Ryokai’s project strengthens ties to Cafe Ohlone on campus.

We also offered our AAPI Hollywood Internships panel in February, to coincide with the launch of our AAPI Media Creatives Fellowship! Our first student, Minh Anh Van was selected and will be interning and working with mentors Jason Lin, Laura Reddy, and Lacy Lew Nguyen Wright in Summer 2023. You can donate to the program here.

Perhaps most exciting of all, however, is that Raphael Cohen has joined the team as our new Events Coordinator! He was thrown into the thick of things in February and has been an invaluable asset. Look out for him more in the coming year!