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Dr Didem Ozkul
UCL Knowledge Lab
23-29 Emerald Street
University College London
  • Lecturer in Digital Media and Society
  • IOE - Culture, Communication & Media
  • UCL Institute of Education

I am a Lecturer in Digital Media and Society based at the UCL Knowledge Lab, Department of Culture, Communication and Media. I hold a Ph.D. from Communication and Media Research Institute (CAMRI), University of Westminster, London, UK and an MA in Media and Visual Studies from Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey.

Research Groups
Research Summary

I am interested in the societal implications of datafication, politics of tracking, limitations of algorithmic (geo-)profiling, and location intelligence and innovation. My research is situated at the nexus of mobile communications and media, politics of mobility, and algorithmic bias:

  • the social and cultural dimensions of mobile and locative media:
how mobile communication and media technologies are used in urban spaces, particularly focusing on location-awareness, spatial and social interactions as part of self-presentation, spatial navigation, place and memory, meaning-making, sense of place, retrieval and disclosure of location data, and presence. 
  • the political and economic dimensions of mobility and location data:
how location data, mobile tracking and locational intelligence are used by public/private organisations and individual users, and how such practices can be employed in ethical and transparent ways that ensure privacy of the users. 
  • the methodological approaches to researching mobilities and mobile media
participant mapping in the form of applied ethnography.
  • location data infrastructures and technological innovation underpinning the development of services giving rise to Internet of Things, focusing on smart devices equipped with sensors that feed real-time location information to the systems of emergency, security, transport and surveillance (systems of mobility which evolve with real-time connectivity and locational tracking).
Areas of PhD supervision:
  • mobile communications and media
  • locative media
  • sociology of space
  • political economy of media and communications
  • politics of mobility and surveillance
  • power and politics of geo-profiling
  • algorithmic bias

Teaching Summary

I teach on the MA Digital Media: Critical Studies at UCL. I am the module leader for Digital Media Theory (term 1) and Mobile Media & Place (term 2) modules. I am also the Programme Leader of MA Digital Media: Critical Studies.

Academic Background
2018 FHEA ATQ03 - Recognised by the HEA as a Fellow – Teaching and Learning in Higher Education University College London
2014 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Media and Communication University of Westminster
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