In an age when public institutions are under threat, what might we learn about them, and what forms of resistance might we cultivate, by recognizing them as design ecologies that embody and affect civic values? Drawing on her two decades of research on and collaborations with various public libraries, she’ll examine the public library as a manifestation of multiple modes of design — urban, architectural, furniture, lighting, service, user experience, and software design, to name just a few — and consider how this particular institution fits within a broader ecology of civic, organizational, and systems design.

This talk is part of our Humanistic Design Speaker Series.

About the speaker

Shannon Mattern is the Penn Presidential Compact Professor of Media Studies and Art History at the University of Pennsylvania. She has written books about libraries, maps, and urban intelligence; she serves as president of the board of the Metropolitan New York Library Council; and she contributes a column about urban data and mediated spaces to Places Journal.

Learn more about Shannon Mattern.

Who can attend?

Open to the public, the campus community, students, postdocs, research scholars, faculty, staff, and alumni.

Refreshments will be provided.
Registration is recommended.