Membership as of Winter 2023

Inagural Chair (On Leave)

Gerald Voorhees

I (he/him) am an Associate Professor in the Department Communication Arts and a disabled, biracial settler-scholar of Anglo-American and Chinese descent. My research is on subjectivity and identity; particularly, how multiculturalism, masculinity, and nationalism become part of gameplay.I teach “Communication and Social Justice,” and my teaching broadly emphasizes how culture,race, and gender are implicated in communication and media. 


Alessandra Luz

I (she/her/they) am a PhD student in the Cheriton School of Computer Science. I was awarded my MSc in Human-Computer Interaction with Ergonomics at UCL in London, UK and my BA in Marketing and Advertising at Metodista University of São Paulo in Brazil. As a Brazilian (latina), woman and disabled, I have been fighting for equity since day one. As an industry veteran I have brought to the Games Institute my experience and perspective of UX Research, which I use to tackle my thesis topic focusing on children who struggle with oculomotor disorders. I have worked for Google, Shopify, DAZN, Samsung R&D, Ogilvy Mather and Motorola Mobile before making my way to the GI. My favourite video games are Danganronpa, League of Legends, Animal Crossing, Doki Doki Literature Club and Two Point Hospital.

Ana Lucia Diaz De Leon Derby

I (she/her) am a Master’s student in Systems Design Engineering. I work with Oliver Schneider at the Haptic Experience Lab, and my work revolves around enabling communication between hapticians (people who work with haptics) and non-hapticians. I identify as a first generation settler, able-bodied, Latino woman. I aim to make my environment more inclusive and a safe space for anyone. I promote equity, dignity, respect, diversity and inclusion.

Arielle Grinberg

I (she/her) am a neurodivergent Russian-Jewish LGBTQ+ PhD student studying HCI in Management Sciences. I previously completed my MASc on the effects of incentives on heterogeneous groups solving complex problems, and have contributed to research on the effects of gender and cybersickness in VR. As the founder and director of a charity, part of my identity is being an advocate and ally of marginalized communities. I am highly committed to creating inclusive spaces and being part of the important discourse on issues of anti-racism, decolonization, equity, diversity and inclusion.

Oliver Schneider

I (he/they) am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Management Sciences (Faculty of Engineering), with disciplinary training in computer science, mathematics, statistics, and human-computer interaction. I am currently serving as an Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion chair for World Haptics 2021 and an LGBTQ+ Space Maker at Waterloo, and have some experience working in and teaching accessibility, especially involving people who are blind and visually impaired. I identify as white, cis-man, able-bodied, second-generation academic, and a settler. 

Shana MacDonald

I (she/her) am an artist-activist-scholar of Scottish, French, and Mi'kmaq ancestry from the Qualipu First Nations of western Newfoundland. I am an Associate Professor in Communication Arts. My interdisciplinary research examines feminist, queer, Indigenous, and anti-racist media activisms within social and digital media, popular culture, cinema, and contemporary art. I am a co-director of the qcollaborative (qLab), a feminist design lab dedicated to developing new forms of relationality through technologies and public performance. Through the lab I co-run the online archive Feminists Do Media (Instagram: @aesthetic.resistance) and the Feminist Think Tank, a research space for the public mobilizaiton of feminist theory. I have published in Feminist Media Histories, Media Theory Journal, Feminist Media Studies and is lead author of Networked Feminist Activisms (Lexington Press 2021).

Hector Perez

I (he/him) am a postdoctoral fellow in the School of Public Health Sciences, Faculty of Health at the University of Waterloo. I work under the supervision of Lili Liu and Antonio Miguel-Cruz, in the Aging and Innovation Research Program and researches the risk factors associated with missing incidents involving persons living with dementia. My research interests include exploring the acceptance, usability and adoption of innovations and technologies that older adults and caregivers use. I have more than five years of teaching experience in project management and technology strategy. I am currently designing a game-learning experience for Police, Paramedics and Fire. I am a Latino from Mexico and enjoys learning from different cultures and backgrounds. I believe in respect, dignity, and awareness.

Jennifer Whitson

I (she/her) am a white, cis het researcher.  My undergraduate and graduate teaching at both the Stratford School and in the Sociology and Legal Studies department mostly centre on Surveillance, and Values in Design. I take care with citational politics, and introduce students - regardless of level or discipline- to intersectional feminism, design justice, and how technology workplaces, design practices, and use cases further bias and marginalization.  My research projects look at pipelines and practices aimed at achieving sustainable careers in the game industry, from education to indie startups. My most recent publication is with a student: Perks, M., and Whitson, J.R. “Equity and Diversity Initiatives in Canada’s Game Industries.” In Creative Industries in Canada, edited by Cheryl Thompson and Miranda Campbell. Toronto, Canada: Canadian Scholars Press. (currently in press) 

Sophia Richardson

I (she/they) am an undergraduate student in Knowledge Integration, who has specialized in environmental sustainability, philosophy of science and science communication. I am a collaborative interdisciplinary student with years of knowledge mobilization, nature interpretation and visual design experience. My previous projects ranged from creating websites to artistic photography projects and physical museum exhibits.

Mackenzie Leclaire

I (she/her) aman master's student in Sociology whose research is broadly concerned with the treatment and management of people who have sexually offended. Her master's thesis research, specifically, explores the impact of a restorative justice-focused peer support group on the post-offending lives of men who have caused sexual harm.

Auxiliary Members

Ben Feng

I (he/him) am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science. I received my B.Math and M.Math in actuarial science from the same department that I am currently teaching. My experiences on both sides of the classroom podium enable me to sympathize with students in different situations. I am an immigrant with Chinese descent and Cantonese cultural background. Having experienced multiple cultural shocks, e.g., between Chinese sub-cultures and between Chinese and Canadian culture, I have high appreciation of cultural diversity. I am interested in participating in different forums to promote equity, diversity, and inclusion, particularly to help students succeed in their academic and cultural lives.

Daniel Harley

I (he/him) am an Assistant Professor at the Stratford School of Interaction Design and Business. I am a settler scholar and identify as straight, white, and cis-male. With a teaching and research background in critical and intersectional feminist approaches to storytelling, design, and technology, I offer a commitment to supporting the working group in developing more equitable and inclusive spaces at the Games Institute.

Ex Officio

Agata Antkiewicz

Staff, link to bio

Mark Hancock

Faculty, link to bio

Neil Randall

Faculty, link to bio