Michael Barnett-Cowan is an Assistant Professor for the Kinesiology Department, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, at the University of Waterloo.
Dr. Shi Cao studies human factors and ergonomics using both experiment and computational simulation methods.
Professor Chilana has disciplinary training in Information Science and Computer Science and has worked on a variety of research projects in HCI.
Karen Collins' research is diverse and interdisciplinary, but has always had a central focus: the interaction of humans and machines, specifically as related to sound.
Colin Ellard is a psychologist researching neuroscience. His interests include how the organization and appearance of natural and built spaces affects movement, wayfinding, emotion, and physiology. He directs the Urban Realities Lab at the University of Waterloo.
Kevin Harrigan is a member of the University of Waterloo's Canadian Centre for Arts and Technology (CCAT). He teaches courses in multimedia and computer-game design in the Digital Arts Communication (DAC) program, and has been a technical expert witness in legal cases regarding Electronic Gaming Machines (EGMs).
Professor Kaplan studies the application of computer graphics in art, illustration, ornamentation, and design. This research area is rooted in computer graphics, but involves forays into art (to study historical sources) classical and computational geometry (to develop mathematical and computational models of ornament), and computer-aided design and manufacturing.
Edith Law is an Assistant Professor at the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. Her research focuses on interaction techniques and incentive mechanisms for volunteer-based human computation systems, and how these systems can address problems in Science and Public Health. She is also part of the Human Computer Interaction Lab.
Professor Fue-Sang Lien has over 20 years of research experience in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Turbulance Modelling.
Chrysanne Di Marco has been a member of the Artificial Intelligence Group since 1990. She is also project leader of the HealthDoc project, which works to develop natural language generation systems for producing multimedia health information tailored to medical conditions and patient characteristics.
Ian Milligan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History at the University of Waterloo. He is also a member of the Tri-University Graduate Program in History (which covers the University of Waterloo, University of Guelph, and Wilfrid Laurier University).
Director of The Games Institute
In addition to directing The Games Institute, Neil Randall has also earned large grants for The Interactive and Multi-Modal Research Syndicate (IMMERSe) and the Waterloo Game Analysis and Monitoring Environment (WatGAME). He is the Faculty Advisor to the Games Institute's First Person Scholar.
Jennifer Roberts-Smith is Principal Investigator of The Stratford Festival Online: Games and Virtual Learning Environments for Education and Audience Engagement, a project funded by the Ontario Early Researcher Award program.
Stacey’s research and teaching interests are human-computer interaction and computer-supported collaboration.
Dr. Gerald Voorhees studies games and new media as sites for the construction and contestation of identity and culture. He is also interested in public discourse pertaining to games and new media, as well as rhetorics of race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality in mediated public discourse.
Jim Wallace is an Assistant Professor at the School of Public Health and Health Systems at University of Waterloo. His research focuses on interaction techniques for computing systems that involve multiple devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and large interactive wall displays, and how these systems can address problems in Public Health.
Jennifer Whitson is the Research Advisor for Execution Labs, an accelerator and investment platform for indie game studios, as well as an affiliated faculty member with the Technoculture, Art and Games Research Centre (TAG) at Concordia University.
Alexandra Orlando (BA and MA, English and Film, Wilfrid Laurier University), is a first year Ph.D. student at the University of Waterloo in the English Languages and Literature department. She is specializing in narratology and game studies. Her research interests include the intersection between film theory and game cinematics, e-sports and East Asian game studies.
Deltcho Valtchanov is a postdoctoral research fellow with a background in virtual reality, human visual perception, and cognitive and behavioural neuroscience. His past research has focused on how low level visual information influences emotional responses to, and aesthetics of, visual scenes.
Alvaro Uribe holds has a degree in Mechatronics Engineering from Mil. Nueva Granada University, Bogotá, Colombia and a Master's and PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Universidade Estudal de Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil.
Megha Bhatt was the Winter 2014 co-op student and worked as a research programmer and communications assistant for The Games Institute. During her term she helped with various projects using different software for web designing and gaming needs.
Judy Ehrentraut is a Ph.D. student at the University of Waterloo, specializing in new media, posthumanism, and games studies. Her research includes agency and identity in digital culture, reading the digitized body, cyborgism, simulated realities, techno-futurism, and utopian/dystopian themes in games and literature. Her current work examines how personal computing devices such as mobile phones and other wearable technologies are changing how we view and redefine our bodies within real and virtual spaces.
Kevin Barton received his PhD in Cognitive and Behavioural Neuroscience from the University of Waterloo. His doctoral research examined how people effectively navigate the world around them, using techniques drawn from mathematics, psychophysiology, virtual reality, and computational neuroscience.
Jagger Nast is an undergraduate student in Applied Mathematics at the University of Waterloo looking to expand his knowledge of game design.
Lindsay Meaning received her B.A. in English from Wilfrid Laurier, and is an M.A. student in the Experimental Digital Media program. Her current research is focused around educational games.
Alexandra Paz-Barreiras was The Game Institute's Spring 2014 Marketing, Communications, and Research co-op student. As her long title suggests, Alex was responsible for many tasks, one of which being the management of the GI and IMMERSe web sites. She is in the process of completing her undergraduate degree through the Arts and Business program in the Faculty of Arts.
Pascaline Lorentz has her PhD in Sociology and is a Postdoctoral Researcher working on online gaming at the Institute for Research on Children, Youth and Family at Masaryk University in Brno, the Czech Republic.
Granted with an ENDEAVOUR Research Fellowship in 2011 she undertook a study documenting the social environment of an intense practice of virtual world attachments in Australia.
Kasandra Arthur, HBA (Lakehead University) and MA (Lakehead University), both with a specialization in Women's Studies. Kasandra studies young adult literature, particularly the processes in which these texts are adapted to film.
Kaitlyn Holbein is a part-time Rhetoric and Communication Design MA student and full-time communications and marketing professional. She received her BA in English literature, with a minor in Sociology, from Carleton University. Kaitlyn enjoys exploring a wide range of topics in the fields of new media and game studies.
Adam Bradley, BA (McMaster) MA (Waterloo), is a PhD student interested in the intersections between technology and traditional literary studies. His MA research project, titled "Data Visualization and the Avant-Garde Aesthetic" was a digital humanities project completed in conjunction with the English department's Digital Media Lab and the Computer Science department's Touchlab.
Ryan Clement (MA York University, BA Brandon University) is an English PhD student who studies the relationship between narrative and games and the possible use of this interaction for new forms of education and intercultural communication.
Matthew is an MA student in the Experimental Digital Media program. His research involves media design, narrative, and experimental graphics.
Amber O’Brien is pursuing a Masters in Literary Studies. Her main area of interest is examining how narratives in science fiction and fantasy texts work to challenge and alter gender ideologies in Western societies.
Amberly H. West, (BA and MA University of Waterloo) researches games for health. Her secondary research areas include adaptations, rhetoric, and new media studies. Under the supervision of Dr. Neil Randall and Dr. Mark Hancock, she and Rebecca Langer (Computer Science) have been working on a multi-disciplinary research project for which the team researched, designed, and developed a prototype of a game that teaches children to identify and manage food allergies.
Toby Malone holds a B.A (Hons.) from the University of Western Australia and a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto’s Centre for Drama, Theatre, and Performance Studies.
Quinn Powell, BA (Wilfrid Laurier University) and MA (Wilfrid Laurier University), has research interests in gender studies, digital media theory and design, as well as post-colonial theory and literature.
Kayla received her Undergraduate Degree from the University of Waterloo studying Arts and Business. From past co-op experiences, Kayla has worked in various industries at companies such as Art in Tanzania, MappedIn, Humber College and CIBC.
Kaitlin is an MA student with strong interests in public relations, communication strategies, and event planning. Kaitlin is currently the Communications and Project Coordinator for the GI.
Melody was the co-op student for The Games Institute for Winter 2016. She's an Arts and Business student, majoring in Psychology and minoring in Human Resources Management. She has worked closely with the Project Manager to organize special events at The Games Institute to showcase both the gaming culture within the university. She also worked on improving the GI website, and digitizing or redesigning some of the outdated systems.
Dr. Jesse Hoey is an associate professor in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. He is also an adjunct scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute in Toronto, Canada, where he is co-leader of the AI and Robotics Research Team. Dr. Hoey received the B.Sc. degree (1992) in physics from McGill University in Montreal, Canada, the M.Sc. degree (1995) in physics and the Ph.D degree (2004) in computer science from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. From 2004-2010, he was an assistant professor in the School of Computing at the University of Dundee, Scotland. In 2014-2015 he was a visiting professor at the Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en automatique (INRIA) in Sophia-Antipolis, France.
Philip Miletic is an English PhD Candidate, whose areas of interest include digital life writing and 20th-century American literature. He is the Book Reviews Editor for First Person Scholar and the Vice President of the Student Association of Graduates in English (SAGE).
Cayley MacArthur is a student in the faculty of English’s M.A. in Rhetoric & Communication Design. During her time in Waterloo’s Knowledge Integration program, Cayley initially became interested in issues surrounding popular culture and human-computer interaction through working on exhibits about the uncanny valley, followed by one about gamification for the Ontario Science Centre.
Brian graduated in Fine Art from the National College of Art and Design Dublin in 2000 where his interests included video and sound installation. He received an M.Phil in Music and Media Technologies from Trinity College Dublin in 2004 focusing on audio-visual composition.
Alex Fleck is a Masters student in the XDM stream interested in the application of new media (games) criticism to other forms. In particular, he is interested in the transposition of literary works into other media.
Kent Aardse is a PhD Candidate in English Department at the University of Waterloo and a research assistant for The Games Institute. His research focuses on humans as fundamentally technological beings, paying particular attention to the intersection between digital technology and literature.
As a User Experience Designer, Phil spends his days learning to understand people and the work that they do, and then finding ways to make that work more effective and satisfying. But as a long-time game nerd, he can't help but turn that same lens on the mechanics that underpin games--what works, what doesn't, and what that means for the experiences that games offer.
Mike is a Masters student in the Computer Science program at the University of Waterloo. Before coming to Canada, he studied game development and augmented reality in Austria and Medicine in Germany. He is also a co-founder of a Berlin-based start-up company which is active in the 3D printing sphere.
Steve Wilcox is a PhD candidate in the English department at the University of Waterloo where he studies empathy, videogames, comics, and rhetoric. His focus is on the use of media for translating knowledge between bodies, communities, and cultures. He is also one of the 25 grad students across Canada to win a $3000 SSHRC award in the "Research for a Better Life: The Storytellers" competition.
Alexander Hodge is an audio engineer, creative technologist, and freelance software developer. He is interested in music technology in general, and especially in the way sound can influence Human-Computer Interaction.
Will is a PhD student who studies how modern video games represent Victorian London differently than modern novels about the era. Specifically, he is interested in investigating historical games' abilities to productively recreate elements of past societies.
Chantel Pilon was a co-op student for The Games Institute from September - December 2013. During her term she created many of the visual and digital promotional materials for the Games Institute. She is a fifth-year student enrolled in Honours Recreation and Business. In addition to her academics, Chantel is a member of the varsity track and field team at the University of Waterloo specializing in the pentathlon and 4X400m relay. The pentathlon is a contest consisting of five events: 60m hurdles, high jump, shot put, long jump and the 800m.
Guillaume Besacier was a post-doctoral fellow in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). During his Ph.D. at the Université Paris-Sud (France), supervised by Michel Beaudouin-Lafon and Frédéric Vernier, he worked with interactive tabletop computers and designed new interaction techniques to use a tabletop more effectively and easily, while being compatible with existing WIMP interfaces.
John (BA honors University of Alberta) is currently an MA student in literary studies at the University of Waterloo. He has an avid interest in e-sports, competitive gaming, and the culture of live-streaming games.
Kirk W. Goodlet received his PhD in History at the University of Waterloo and was a research associate at the Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies. He has worked and conducted research in archives across Canada, the Netherlands, and Belgium. In addition, Kirk is also the co-founder and writer for clioscurrent.com, a website dedicated to exploring current affairs with historical perspective.
Erica is a filmmaker and designer. She has just completed a film called “John Orpheus is Dead” which is part of a multidisciplinary collaboration that includes an album, concerts, music videos and even a jewellery line called Gada Chainz.
Pierson Browne is a first-year Ph.D. student who has arrived in the Games Institute by way of Concordia University’s M.A. Media Studies program, during which he was an active contributor in two games research institutions: the mLab and the Centre for Technoculture, Art, and Games. Pierson’s history as an aficionado of competitive card games and competitive digital strategy games has guided his academic interest towards metagames—the compelling product of collisions between competitiveness and sociality in the context of play.
Wilson Kwong was a co-op student for The Games Institute for fall term 2013. He is enrolled in the Recreation and Sports Business program with a minor in Computer Science and Human Resource Management. He likes to spend his free time playing video games, especially sports games (FIFA, Madden and NBA 2K). Wilson is also interested in photography and playing basketball.
Ahmad Salam Alrefai is a PhD candidate working with Dr. Chrysanne Di Marco in the area of Games for Health. He is interested in designing games to help in mental health, and to improve the human well being. Studying the neurobiological factor in order to measure the effectiveness of the games is of great interest to his research direction.
Jason Hawreliak received his Ph.D. in English from the University of Waterloo. His research examines rhetorics of heroism and immortality in videogames. Other research interests include multimodal rhetoric and the psychological function of digital media.
Ruby was working at the GI as the Project Coordinator for her Fall 2015 co-op term. Now entering into her third year of Honours Arts and Business at the University of Waterloo, she is pursuing a major in Psychology with minors in Human Resources Management and Digital Arts Communication.
Kirsten Robinson is a systems design engineer and designer. She worked on Governor General Award winning architect Phillip Beesley’s Hylozoic Soil team to create responsive architectures that were shown across Canada and at the Venice Biennial.
Professor Kelly is a rhetorician whose research examines how science communication is changing with new—especially networked—technologies and also with different communities becoming involved in scientific research and knowledge production.
Anda is currently studying Global Business and Digital Arts at the University of Waterloo. With more than four years experience as a digital freelance artist, Anda is proficient in all applications within the Adobe Suite. Anda seeks to find ways to intersect their background in games, animation, and user experience design.
Betty Chang is a PhD candidate in Systems Design Engineering. Her research interest is in Human-Computer Interaction, Human Factors, and Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW). Her thesis seeks to improve people's awareness of the computer automation and collaborators in a co-located setting.
Find out more about Betty's research here.
Susan is a medical geographer with particular interests in global environmental health. She is an Adjunct Professor with the United Nations University Institute for Water, Environment and Health (http://inweh.unu.edu/), a partner in much of the global water and sanitation research that she und
Kelly is in the process of finishing her undergraduate degree in the Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo, with a minor in Theatre & Performance.
Elise Vist, BA and MA (English, Carleton University), is a second-year Ph.D. student currently studying the intersections of feminism and game studies. Thanks to her experiences with locative narratives and tabletop game design, she has become interested in low-tech games and enjoys encouraging people to make "crap games". As a co-founder of the Games Institute Janes (GI Janes), Elise is currently working towards bringing people who identify as women together to make, play, and talk about games.
Andre Yam is an eSports specialist who is concerned with all aspects of competitive "play" and the spectatorship that follows. He has an M.A. in English Literary Studies from the University of Waterloo with a combined honours B.A. in English and History from Wilfrid Laurier University. He currently works with the Games Institute along with the Ontario eSports Gaming Events group in promoting and theorizing the future of eSports.
Rina R. Wehbe is currently working on her Ph.D. Her research focuses on understanding difficulty and learning in games and productivity applications. Currently, she is co-supervised by Dr. Lennart Nacke and Dr. Edward Lank of the University of Waterloo, and Dr. Stephen Fairclough of Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU). They are all a part of HCI Games Labs.
Lauren Burr is a PhD candidate in the English Department at the University of Waterloo studying locative media, augmented/alternate/hybrid realities, and pervasive games. Lauren’s recent collaborative projects include Bonfire of the Humanities, an alternate reality game designed for Congress 2012; Cytopath, an augmented reality necromedia game set in downtown Kitchener; and House of Lexia, a locative hypertext remediation of Mark Danielewski’s House of Leaves.
Felan Parker is a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow with the Technoculture, Art and Games Research Centre at Concordia University. His current research examines indie gaming cultures, and he is collaborating with the Games Institute on the Indie Interfaces project.
Justin Carpenter BA (University of Calgary) MA (University of Leeds) is a PhD student interested in Aesthetics, Critical Game Studies, Indigenous Literature, and Multimodality. More specifically, he hopes to explore indigenous video games (such as Never Alone) and how oral narratives function in these games, particularly how music and spoken word interact with visual and ludic elements in a game. He is also a copy editor for First Person Scholar.
Becky Anderson is a PhD candidate in the English Department at the University of Waterloo.
Jay is an undergraduate student in his third year of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. He is passionate about game design and creation, and is working at the Games Institute as a developer during the Summer 2015 co-op term.
Caroline Wong has joined The Games Institute as a research assistant for her Spring 2017 co-op and will be under the supervision of the Associate Director, Dr. Mark Hancock.
Emma Vossen is a PhD candidate currently writing a dissertation examining how accessible games and gaming/gamer culture is to women. Her research is specifically examining how comfortable women feel playing, talking and writing about games in both physical and virtual spaces and how this determines who enters and becomes a part of gamer culture.
Charlotte advocates for and celebrates nerd culture in every way that she can. Outside of her job as the Outreach Coordinator of the Laurier Centre for Women in Science, she is the Nerd Nite KW boss (aka founder and coordinator) as well as part of other numerous community organizations. Nerd Nite KW is a monthly event that celebrates nerd culture with presentations, trivia, and games (like Rock Band Night KW and Artemis) in local pubs. Nerd Nite is an international organization and Nerd Nite KW was the second Canadian chapter created in March of 2012 and has been growing ever since.
Saba is in her third year of Health Studies, with a minor in Gerontology.
She has worked as a research assistant on various projects started in The Games Institute. Her interests revolve around projects that relate to patient satisfaction, especially the elderly.
Leila received her M.Sc. degree in Software Engineering from the University of Alberta. She joined the Collaborative Systems Lab in 2013 as a research assistant.
Alice is doing her Masters in Sustainability Management. Her thesis aims to answer whether gamification can engage employees to advance corporate social responsibility.
Melissa Stocco has joined The Games Institute as a research assistant. She is a 4th year undergraduate student in the Arts and Business program with a major in Sociology and minor in Digital Arts Communication. Melissa became interested in studying games after taking Jennifer Whitson's course Gamers and Games, and Lennart Nacke's course Introduction to Game Design.
Ed Lank is an associate professor in the Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. His research is in the area of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI).
Mufaddal is currently a 2B Computer Science student at the University of Waterloo, who joined the GI team to work as a Research Assistant co-op student.
George Ross, BA (Hons.) (Linguistics and Applied Language Studies, Carleton University) and MA (Applied Language Studies, Carleton University) specializes in simulations, organizational rhetoric, and narrative modeling.
While currently working as freelance web, digital, and marketing designer, Gina continues to look for new opportunities to put her passion for presentation and design to good use.
Shawn Dorey is a student in the Masters of Arts - Experimental Digital Media program inside of U Waterloo's English department. Coming from the University of New Brunswick, they graduated with a First Class designation for their Honours Bachelor of Arts in Media Arts and Cultures.
Conchita is a student at the University of Waterloo entering the final year of her undergraduate degree. She is in Honours Arts and Business, Honours Peace and Conflict Studies, and her minor is International Studies.
Mitchell Loewen is a 4th year Knowledge Integration and Psychology Joint Honours student with a Collaborative Design Specialization at the University of Waterloo. Under the supervision of Dr. Lennart Nacke and Dr. Chris Burris, Mitchell is currently working on his undergraduate Psychology thesis investigating the relationship between the self and avatar creation norms in video games. Mitchell is also very passionate about game design, and is currently working with some fellow undergraduate students to publish a game they designed during Dr. Nacke’s Introduction to Game Design course.
Brandon Ralph (BSc and MA in Psychology) is a PhD candidate in the Cognitive Neuroscience division of the Psychology Department at the University of Waterloo. His primary areas of expertise are visual processing and attention.
Christian is an award winning writer from Toronto. He is interested in eSports and the narrative negotiations that take place between player and game. Christian is currently studying in the Experimental Digital Media stream.
Katja Rogers is a Computer Science PhD student from the Institute of Media Informatics at Ulm University, Germany. As a visiting researcher within Dr. Lennart Nacke's research group, her current project at the GI focuses on the effects of audio on player experience in a VR horror game. Her previous projects involved topics such as NPC design, evolutionary algorithms, persuasive and pervasive games, as well as augmented reality.
John Harris is a PhD student in Computer Science (BAsc. Mechatronics Engineering, UWaterloo; MSc Computer Science, UCalgary). His research focuses on the design and development of Strong Asymmetry in games as a means of promoting inclusiveness and getting more kinds of people playing together.
Ben’s background is in visual neuroscience and his research interests relate to the development and plasticity of human visual brain areas.
Dr. Nacke's work is located within the information and communication technologies, design, psychology and human-computer interaction space, but also ties closely into the areas of human health and wellness. He uses biotechnology (namely, physiological sensors) and much of his research is located in the field of user research, where he is focused on evaluating physiological signals elicited by humans when playing games.
Lisa Tran was the Communications and Research co-op student for the Fall 2014 term. She has many titles to her role including Project Manager Assistant as well as Facilities Manager.
Evan Ribey is an undergraduate student in the School of Public Health at the University of Waterloo. Currently entering his final year of his undergraduate education, he has research interests in web-based applications of health care data and information visualization.
Dr. Rita Orji is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Games Institute, working with Dr. Lennart Nacke and Dr. Chrysanne Di Marco. Rita’s research at the Games Institute focuses on creating persuasive games aiming to help adolescents avoid various interconnected risky health behaviours (e.g., risky sex; drugs and alcohol use).
Emily West started her work with the GI as a Research and Communications Assistant co-op student for the Winter 2015 term. Upon completion of her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology she has returned to The Games Institute full time as Operations Coordinator.
She was awarded Co-op Student of the Year for the Faculty of Arts in 2015 for her work within The Games Institute as well as her contributions to the co-operative program at the University of Waterloo.
Gustavo is a Ph.D. student in Computer Science at the University of Waterloo under supervision of Dr. Lennart Nacke and Dr. Daniel Vogel. His main interests include gamification and games for health and learning. His research focus on the design of gameful applications.
Jonathan Rodriguez is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Computer Science.
PhD candidate from the Systems Design Engineering department at the University of Waterloo. He received his MPhil in Computer Science, B(Eng) in Computer Science Information Engineering from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.
Michael Hancock is a PhD candidate in the Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo. His dissertation is on the history of textual representation in videogames, a study which ranges from videogame instruction manuals to the 1989 Amiga game It Came From the Desert.
MASc. candidate from Systems Design Engineering working as an experimental perceptual psychologist, a quantitative user researcher and a human factors engineer at the Human Optimization and Modelling Lab (HOM Lab).
Ian is a undergraduate student in his final year of Computer Engineering. As both a gamer and a filmmaker, Ian has enjoys figuring out how each discipline can draw from the other to produce better media.