Robert is an Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto working on crisis informatics, human-centered computing (HCC), and science and technology studies (STS). His research uses critical and participatory design tactics to evaluate and improve the technologies we use to understand and respond to environmental challenges like disasters and climate change.
Robert holds a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Colorado Boulder, a Master's Degree in Natural Resources and Sustainable Development from American University and Bachelors Degrees in History and Political Science from the University of Illinois, Chicago.
Prior to starting his PhD, Robert was a professional software developer and consultant to the World Bank’s Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR), where he launched the Open Data for Resilience Initiative, a worldwide effort to harness open data, open source software, and civic technology to improve disaster and climate risk management.
While a PhD student at CU Boulder, Robert was also a visiting student researcher with University of California, Berkeley's Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, and Society, and a visiting researcher and lecturer with the Stanford Urban Resilience Initiative.
Crisis Informatics, human-computer interaction (HCI), computer supported cooperative work (CSCW), infrastructure studies, critical design, participatory sensing, civic technology, environmental justice
Introductory computer science and programming, HCI, social computing, user-centered design, qualitative research methods, ethics of technology and computing, science and technology studies (STS), information communication technology for development (ICTD)
soden at cs dot toronto dot edu
- July 2020 - Our DIS2020 Paper, The Disaster and Climate Change Artathon: Staging Art/Science Collaborations in Crisis Informatics, is now available.
- July 2020 - I began a new position as an Assistant Professor in Computer Science and the School of the Environment at the University of Toronto
- June 2020 - I published a short essay on Crisis Informatics and Mutual Aid during the Coronavirus Pandemic
- May 2020 - I co-organized a (virtual) workshop on Embracing Uncertainty in HCI at CHI 2020
- November 2019 - I co-organized a workshop on Fostering Historical Research in HCI and CSCW at CSCW 2019 in Austin, TX.
- September 2019 - I gave a talk at called Modes of Uncertainty: Negotiating Flood Risk Between Engineers, Bureaucrats, and Publics at the Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) in New Orleans, LA.
- July 2019 - I started a one-year Post-Doc in Computer Science at Columbia University where I work with Lydia Chilton.
- May 2019 - I co-organized a workshop called CHI4Evil: Creative Speculations on the Negative Impacts of HCI Research at CHI2019 in Glasgow, Scotland.