Researcher profiles

Craig S. Kaplan

Craig S. Kaplan

Associate Professor, David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science

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.

Dr. Brad Mehlenbacher profile headshot

Brad Mehlenbacher

Associate Professor, English Language & Literature

Dr. Brad Mehlenbacher is an Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Communication in the Department of English Language & Literature at the University of Waterloo.

Diane Watson profile headshot

Diane Watson

Computer Science

Diane Watson was a Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. Her focus is on gamification, in particular, how positive behaviours can be encouraged through games.

Marim Ganaba

Digital Experience Innovation

Marim joined the Games institute as UX designer and research assistant. She recently completed her Masters in Digital Experience Innovation program at the University of Waterloo. With her skills in design and background in science, she is passionate about understanding people’s behaviour then crafting products and experiences that delight and empower them. She worked under the supervision of Dr. Nacke on various projects where she helped create intuitive solutions to complex problems. Her area of interest is in human centric design, interaction and motion design.

Rita Orji profile headshot

Rita Orji

Computer Science

Dr. Rita Orji was a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Games Institute, working with Dr. Lennart Nacke and Dr. Chrysanne Di Marco. Rita’s research at the Games Institute focuseed on creating persuasive games aiming to help adolescents avoid various interconnected risky health behaviours (e.g., risky sex; drugs and alcohol use).

Andrew Jian-Lan Cen

Systems Design Engineering

Andrew Cen was a systems design engineering (SYDE) student under the SWaGUR program. Andrew graduated with a BA in Speech Communication and minor in Digital Arts Communication. He researches with Human Computer Interaction (HCI) Games Group because of his passion for game design and interest in Games User Research. He is currently researching accessibility and novel input methods in virtual reality. On his spare time, Andrew is a digital designer and his primary practice revolves around photography and videography.

Alex Hodge

Alexander Hodge

Research Assistant

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.

Alvaro Uribe

Alvaro Uribe


Brief Bio

​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.

Marcela Bomfim

Marcela Bomfim

Applied Health Sciences

Marcela Bomfim is a PhD Student in the School of Public Health and Health Systems (AHS), working under the supervision of Dr James Wallace. She holds a BSc in Nutrition and in Systems Analysis and an MSc in Computer Science with specialization in Human-Computer Interaction. 

"My research focuses on exploring Gameful Design to improve Food Literacy among people. My research leverages Self Determination Theory to build peoples' competence, autonomy, and relatedness around food, with the aim of making people more knowledgeable and skilled when planning and selecting foods, as well as promoting a celebratory food culture bringing people to eat together."

Marcela Bomfim

Giovanni Ribeiro

Giovanni Ribeiro

Systems Design Engineering

Giovanni Ribeiro is a games user research student pursuing a M.A.Sc in Systems Design Engineering under the supervision of Dr. Lennart Nacke at UW.

Amy Liang

Amy Liang


Amy Liang finished her Bachelor of Arts degree with Psychology major and Human Resource Management minor. 

"I am a passionate researcher interested in Second Language Acquisition. I am currently helping a couple researches testing on topics related to accented language. On August 2018, I finished a presentation on how we could use the new VR technology to help students learn English easier."

- Amy Liang 

Ben Feng

Ben Feng

Assistant Professor, Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science

Dr. Ben Feng’s research interests include mathematical modelling of complex real-life systems, computer experiment design and analysis, and Monte Carlo simulations.

Dr. Feng is particularly interested in the intersections of these fields such as experiment designs, statistical analysis of computer simulations, efficient simulation procedures for risk management, etc. While with a methodological emphasis, Dr. Feng is very keen on conducting research that can make an impact in practical applications.

Oliver Schneider smiling headshot

Oliver Schneider

Assistant Professor, Department of Management Sciences

Dr. Oliver Schneider is an Assistant Professor of Human-Computer Interaction in the Department of Management Sciences. His research interests include human-computer interaction, haptics, and creativity-support systems.

Oliver is the recipient of the Post-doctoral Fellowship, Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship and Canada Graduate Scholarship - Master's. He typically attends/publishes at CHI, UIST, and haptics conferences such as Haptics Symposium, World Haptics and EuroHaptics.

Omar Gutierrez


"I am researching the ways in which games use nostalgia to take advantage of gamers. More specifically, I am interested in how endless sequels and re-makes contribute very little - if anything - to the series or to the genre, but then cover it up by exploiting the gamer's feels. In other words, through clever manipulation of psychological vulnerabilities and deep associations within the memories of players, a large part of the videogame industry is now in cruise control, demeaning the art and giving love [of videogames] a bad name... making millions of dollars in the process."

Omar Gutierrez

Photo of Dr. Aynur Kadir

Aynur Kadir

Assistant Professor in Digital Media at the Department of Communication Arts

Dr. Aynur Kadir’s research focuses on practices and theories of design and the study of interactive multimedia in the humanities, ethnographic practices, and museum curation.

John Edison Munoz Cardona

John Muñoz

Postdoc - Systems Design

"I am interested in using human body signals to create more "humanized" assistive technologies based on games and interactive systems. My research has been applied mainly in healthcare scenarios from physical activity promotion for the seniors to neurorehabilitation games for stroke patients.

Maximilian Altmeyer

Mathematics and Computer Science

Maximilian Altmeyer is a researcher and PhD student at the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) and the Ubiquitous Media Technology Lab (UMTL) at Saarland University, Saarbrücken, Germany. He holds a M.Sc in Media Informatics from Saarland University. His research focuses on using gamification elements in behavior change support systems, on factors influencing their perception and on ways to tailor them to users.

Eric in sunglasses

Eric Ocelewski

Affiliated Researcher

Elizabeth Caravella

Assistant Professor of Visual Studies, Writing Department (York University)

Dr. Elizabeth (Beth) Caravella specializes in digital & visual rhetoric, multimodal composition, and game studies. Her work focuses on habituation through visual cueing in video games and how gameful design can be used to improve gamification practices, especially when gamifying the classroom. In addition to her scholarly work, she also performs humanities-based industry research for various game companies, including Blizzard Entertainment and Bethesda Games.

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