Carl DiSalvo is an Associate Professor at The Georgia Institute of Technology, where he directs the Public Design Workshop.

Tom Jenkins is a PhD candidate in the Digital Media program in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He is interested in how designed objects operate as parts of different ecosystems. His dissertation work focuses on the use of research through design methods to produce speculative Internet of Things for domestic settings, particularly cohousing communities.

Thomas James Lodato is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Center for Urban Innovation in the School of Public Policy at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Lodato is an affiliated researcher with the Public Design Workshop. His research focuses on the contemporary work practices of design, the emerging civic context of design methods, and design(ing) as a metaphor for work(ing). He pays particular attention to discourses around design thinking, civics and civic innovation, and post-computational work (mobile, precarious, and contingent labor). Underwriting these interests are an attention to the materialities of design/work and the role of depictions (things, artifacts, and representations) in planning.

Firaz Peer is a PhD student in the Digital Media program in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at the Georgia Institute of Technology. His research examines the ways in which interaction design and digital media construct and support civic life. He works with communities to design interactions, services and experiences that promote participation and learning.

Andrew Nelson is a civic technologist and software designer researching how design and innovative technologies could best be used to improve public services and opportunities for civic engagement. With PDW, he researches the human-computer interaction aspects of civic media and urban computing. He also contributes digital artifacts to local social activist projects, often related to food. His masters degree project is included, as he designs and builds a digital system for gleaning local surplus food before it’s wasted. More of his work can be found at

Kirsten Boehner is a Visiting Scholar at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She holds a PhD from Cornell University in Communication where her dissertation research focused on tensions between innovation and codification. Her current work involves investigating the stance of design as a tool for exploring issues of concern.

Amanda Meng is a PhD candidate at the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs where she studies technology and democracy. For her dissertation research, Amanda investigates how social movements make use of open government data to make claims on government. A native to Atlanta, she also works locally to use data and networked technologies for participatory projects at the city and neighborhood level. Throughout her career as a practitioner and academic she has spent time in the Dominican Republic, India, Ghana, Nigeria, Hong Kong, studying or implementing projects to improve development or democracy outcomes using Information Communication Technologies.

Sean Mackey is an undergraduate student studying Industrial Design at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He is currently working with the Public Design Workshop as Web and Print Designer, maintaining the PDW website and creating printed collateral for PDW projects.

Past Members: Tanyoung Kim, PHD (2013); Jonathan Lukens PHD (2013); Thomas Barnwell, MS (2010); Laura Fries, MS (2011); Cinque Hicks, MS (2010); Lauren Langley, MS (2012); Adam Rice, MS (2009); Beth Schechter, MS (2011); Daniel Upton, MS (2009)

Community Partners: We are currently working on projects with Concrete Jungle and the Atlanta Community Food Bank.