Networked Expertise Research Group

Students in lab working on the Networked Expertise Project

Fall 2018 Researchers

Devon Moriarty looks at the camera smiling in a professional photo.Devon Moriarty

Ph.D. Candidate, English Language and Literature, University of Waterloo
Graduate Diploma in Cognitive Science program, University of Waterloo
M.A., English Language and Literature (Rhetoric and Communication Design), University of Waterloo
B.A., Psychology, University of Waterloo

Personal Site

Devon is investigating the political implications of the rhetoric of popular culture, and specifically how viral artifacts curated by social voting communities such as Reddit, can influence Canadian ideologies, and promote rhetorical citizenship via public deliberation and civic engagement. She is working to find ways to leverage virality in these established, democratically-oriented online communities to the benefit of a more inclusive democracy in Canada where citizens can participate meaningfully in political life by capitalizing on the affordances of virtual platforms.

Doctoral researcher for Networked Expertise: Fall 2017 - Spring 2018


Tyler Black facing camera smilingTyler Black

M.A. Candidate, English Language and Literature (Rhetoric and Communication Design), University of Waterloo
B.A., English Language and Literature, University of Waterloo


Tyler is an incoming (Fall 2018) Masters student at the University of Waterloo, having completed a Bachelor of Arts in English, majoring in Rhetoric, Media and Professional Communication, with Intensive English and Digital Media Studies specializations at UW. Their main areas of interest revolve around the cognitive and semiotic aspects of rhetoric present in the communication habits that arise in multidisciplinary and cross-disciplinary environments and teams, with emphasis on rhetorical figures and moves in digital environments.

Tyler also continues their work with Prof. Randy Harris on the RhetFig database, and the Games Institute as a member of the VR working group.

Graduate research assistant: Fall 2018 - Spring 2019; Undergraduate research assistant for Networked Expertise: Fall 2017 - Spring 2018.


Undergraduate researcher Patricia Balbon looking at camera smiling in a professional photoPatricia Balbon

B.Sc. Candidate, Honours Science (Society, Technology, and Values Option), University of Waterloo


Patricia is interested in studying knowledge infrastructures in science as they apply to access, transparency, and integrated design.  For her senior thesis, she is investigating the policy network of gain-of-function research regulation, characterizing policymaking as a result of collaborations between actors participating on behalf of stakeholders.  She hopes it will be useful for those concerned with developing interventions to promote sound deliberation practices among scientists, ethicists, policymakers, and members of the general public.

Undergraduate research assistant for Networked Expertise: Fall 2018


Danielle Griffin looking at camera in professional photo.Danielle Griffin
B.A. Candidate, English Literature and Rhetoric, Minor in Cognitive Science

Danielle is an undergraduate student completing her last year of studies in English Literature and Rhetoric. Danielle’s projects have all involved the rhetoric of genre and the Oxford English Dictionary, particularly the relationship between different registers of discourse and semantic change. Her undergraduate thesis combines approaches in cognitive semantics to survey historically the relationship between genre and metaphorical conceptual mappings in the English language. 

Danielle continues to contribute at Dr. David Williams’ project The Life of Words.

Undergraduate research assistant for Networked Expertise: Fall 2018



Prof. Mehlenbacher, students from her graduate qualitative methods course, and her Networked Expertise research team.
Photo: "60 Minutes to Save the World" Youth Outreach STEAM education event run by Prof. Mehlenbacher's Qualitative Methods grad seminar (who designed the workshop during a design sprint hosted at Google Waterloo) and NE research team. October 2017.


Journal Articles (* indicates NE student researchers)

Moriarty, D.*, Nunez de Villavicencio, P.*, Black, T.*, Cai, H.*, Bustos, M.*, Mehlenbacher, B., and Mehlenbacher, A. R., (accepted). Durable Research, Portable Findings: Rhetorical Methods in Case Study Research. Technical Communication Quarterly.

Book Reviews

Our team as partnered with Scistarter to publish book reviews in a series dedicated to citizen science. Our reviews appear on the Public Library of Science Citizen Sci blog, Discover Magazine's "Citizen Science Salon," and Scistarter. Here are some books the team has reviewed:

The Incidental Steward: Reflections on Citizen Science by Akiko Busch. Yale University Press, 2014. Reviewed by Patricia Balbon. Available online:

Bat Count: A Citizen Science Story by Anna Forrester. Arbordale Publishing, 2017. AND Moonlight Crab Count by Neeti Bathala, Jennifer Keats Curtis, & Veronica V. Jones (Illustrator). Arbordale Publishing, 2017. Reviewed by Tyler Black. Available online:

Citizen Science: How Ordinary People Are Changing the Face of Discovery by Caren Cooper. Overlook Press: New York, NY. 2016. Reviewed by Ashley Mehlenbacher. Available online:

The Rightful Place of Science: Citizen Science edited by Darlene Cavalier and Eric B. Kennedy. Consortium for Science, Policy, & Outcomes. 2016. Reviewed by Devon Moriarty. Available online:

Diary of a Citizen Scientist: Chasing Tiger Beetles and other New Ways of Engaging the World by Sharman Apt Russell. Oregon State University Press. 2014. Reviewed by Ashley Mehlenbacher. Available online:


NE team at a Girls in STEAM event at the University of Waterloo
Photo: Workshop for Girls in STEAM event by Mayor Dave Jaworsky hosted at the Institute for Quantum Computing. Janurary, 2018.

Past Team Members

Paula Nunez de Villavicencio, Master of Arts in Rhetoric & Communication Design, RA for Winter 2018

Monica Bustos, Bachelor of Science in Honours Health Studies, RA for Winter 2018

Helen Cai, Bachelor of Science in Honours Health Studies, RA for Winter 2018

Kelsey Metz, Bachelor of Social Work (Renison University College), RA for Fall 2017 

Shania Trepanier, Bachelor of Arts in Knowledge Integration, RA for Fall 2017

Jamie Bate, Bachelor of Arts in Knowledge Integration, RA for Spring 2017

Jason Chen, Bachelor of Accounting and Financial Management, RA for Spring 2017

Shawn Corsetti, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, RA for Spring 2017

Sara Majid, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, RA for Spring 2017

Zainab Salman, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, RA for Spring 2017

Cailin Younger, Bachelor of Arts in Global Business and Digital Arts, RA for Spring 2017


Supported By

(This project's views represent those of the researchers, not the supporting organizations).



This research was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

Ontario Ministry Research Innovation and Science logo

Support for this project is provided through an Early Researcher Award from the Ontario Ministry of Research, Innovation, and Science.


University of Waterloo Arts Logo

The University of Waterloo's Faculty of Arts has also provided funding that supports this project.

University of Waterloo logo

The University of Waterloo/SSHRC Seed Grant program also provided support for this project.