Okune, Angela. 2018. "Melissa Densmore." In STS in "Africa" Personal Careers. In STS in "Africa" in Formation, created by Angela Okune and Aadita Chaudhury. In STS Across Borders Digital Exhibit, curated by Aalok Khandekar and Kim Fortun. Society for Social Studies of Science. August.
Melissa Densmore is a Senior Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in the Department of Computer Science at UCT and Acting Director of the Centre. Prior to joining UCT in August 2014, she completed a postdoc at Microsoft Research in Bangalore, India as part of the Technology for Emerging Markets group, where she conducted a trial comparing the effectiveness of community health workers using interactive mobile health education materials to health workers using paper flipbooks. She is currently working on a project that explores community wireless and local content creation in a township community in Cape Town. She and her team are studying meta-issues such as partnership development, technical issues such as wireless mesh technology and co-design of local content sharing and services, as well as attempting to understand local ecologies around technology use and decision making.
This PECE essay helps to answer the STS Across Borders analytic question: “What people, projects, and products exemplify how this STS formation has developed over time?”
This essay highlights prominant and upcoming individuals working on critical science and technology issues in Africa and is part of a broader exhibit on "STS in Africa."
MD: "Most of my work falls into this category, although I don't identify as STS. One project explores community wireless and local content creation in a township community in Cape Town. We are studying meta-issues such as partnership development, technical issues such as wireless mesh technology and co-design of local content sharing and services, as well as attempting to understand local ecologies around technology use and decision making."
MD: "decolonization - as an issue especially cogent in the Southern African context, development as a frame (often problematic since it reinforces power relations, etc), or how to do development, western technologies vs Ubuntu/community orientation, ethics?"
MD: "conferences (local and global), workshops, research talks, hallway conversations, keynotes"
Melissa Densmore (May 6, 2018): " There are some major structural issues entailed in the conference circuit - resulting in geographical siloing of research contributions. Would like to see more support for "southern-driven" conferences, with ties to mainstream conferences, as well as more...Read more