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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Participatory Design of Sensing Networks: Strengths and Challenges

  • Author(s): Shilton, Katie
  • Ramanathan, Nithya
  • Reddy, Sasank
  • Samanta, Vidyut
  • Burke, Jeffrey A
  • Estrin, D
  • Hansen, Mark
  • Srivastava, Mani B.
  • et al.

Participatory design (PD) involves users in all phases of design to build systems that fit user needs while simultaneously helping users understand complex systems. We argue that traditional PD techniques can benefit participatory sensing: community-based participatory research (CBPR) projects in which complex technologies, such as sensing networks using mobile phones, are the research instruments. Based on our pilot work on CycleSense, a community-based data gathering system for bicycle commuters, we discuss the benefits and challenges of PD in participatory sensing settings, and outline a method to integrate PD into the research process.

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