Julie Kientz

2016 Seminar Series

Considerations for the Connected Family

Societal ideas of family life and healthy child development increasingly include notions of the ways in which families should and should not engage with information and communication technologies. In this talk, I will discuss results from a series of studies from my research lab in which we investigate families’ current practices, values, aspirations, and fears in relation to their use of connected technologies. Computing can support families in a variety of ways, and novel systems to support family health and wellness can improve child-development outcomes and family well-being. Research from my lab has also found that families have a sense of ambivalence about their use of technology, driven in part by social narratives that portray it as a negative and intrusive presence in family life. I will close the presentation with twelve considerations for designing for connected families.

About Julie Kientz

Julie A. Kientz (pronounced like “Keentz”) is an Associate Professor in the department of Human Centered Design & Engineering at the University of Washington. She is also an Adjunct Associate Professor in The Information School and Computer Science & Engineering and is active in the Design, Use, Build (dub) alliance. Dr. Kientz's primary research areas are in the fields of Human-Computer Interaction, Ubiquitous Computing, and Health Informatics. She directs the Computing for Healthy Living & Learning Lab, which focuses on designing, developing, and evaluating future computing applications in the domains of health and education. In particular, Dr. Kientz has worked on designing and evaluating mobile, sensor, and collaborative applications for people with sleep disorders, parents of young children, and individuals with autism. Her primary research methods involve human-centered design, technology development, and a mix of qualitative and quantitative methods. Dr. Kientz received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2008, was awarded a National Science Foundation CAREER Award in 2009, and was named one of MIT Technology Review's top 35 Innovators Under 35 in 2013.