I’m an Associate Professor, Director of the DCRC and Co-Director of i-Docs. My practice-led research looks at emerging documentary practices. I’m interested in the social, political and cultural potential of interactive and co-creative documentary.
I’ve been working in participatory media since the mid-nineties. I was co-founder and producer of the BBC’s “mass observation” camcorder project – Video Nation (94-2000) and Executive Producer of Capture Wales (2001-2007), a pioneering digital storytelling project in the UK. I’ve developed and overseen a number of other innovative participatory projects for the BBC including Voices (2004) – a major pan-platform collaborative exploration of language, accent and dialect across the UK (Webby nominated), and MyScienceFictionLife (2006) (Webby Honoree) – a collective history of British science fiction.
From 2007 until 2010 I was Creative Director: Multiplatform at BBC Wales – commissioning new media on projects including Coal House (2007) and Coal House at War (2008) and leading cross-platform seasons including “What are we doing to our kids?” (2008) about contemporary childhood, and “Green Wales” (2009) which looked at how Wales is responding to the challenge of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
My involvement with DIY and alternative media goes back to the 1970s. I was one of the founders of COW Films, a feminist film distribution group, worked with the punk band The Slits, at Four Corners Film Workshop in Bethnal Green, and was one of the editors of Emergency Magazine.
My recent documentary, The Are you happy? Project, an output of an AHRC Fellowship in Creative and Performing Arts, revisits Jean Rouch’s seminal documentary “Chronicle of a Summer” in the context of global collaboration and the web, and explores the potential of live web data for the “creative treatment of actuality” (Grierson’s early definition of documentary).
My recent writing appears in The Journal of Documentary Studies (Intellect Books 1013), The Documentary Film Book (Palgrave 2013) and DIY Citizens; Critical Making and Social Media (MIT Press 2014.)
A forthcoming collection – i-docs : The Evolving Practices of Interactive Documentary, co-edited with Judith Aston and Sandra Gaudenzi, will be published by Wallflower Press in Spring 2017.