Faculty of Engineering
   
   
  
 

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Jessica Wardlaw

Research Fellow, Faculty of Engineering

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Biography

Jessica comes from Dorset, UK, and studied Geography at the University of Oxford (BA, 2004). Following a GIS internship at the United States Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, and further Geographical Information Systems (GIS) experience in public and private sectors, she led a Knowledge Transfer Partnership between UCL and Dr Foster Intelligence in 2007, which was graded outstanding and developed into her Engineering Doctorate and interest in the usability of geospatial technologies.

Expertise Summary

Usability Engineering (designing then running experiments with participants and obtaining information on users in novel ways to inform more usable designs), Big Data, Action Research and GIS.

Research Summary

I am a postdoc with the Rights Lab at the University of Nottingham, developing web-based Citizen Science/crowdsourcing projects and approaches to locate features in satellite images associated with… read more

Recent Publications

Current Research

I am a postdoc with the Rights Lab at the University of Nottingham, developing web-based Citizen Science/crowdsourcing projects and approaches to locate features in satellite images associated with activities in which modern slavery is known to be widespread (e.g. brick manufacturing in Central Asia). My research is driven to improve estimates of the prevalence of these activities, and validate/train machine learning algorithms to farm satellite imagery for the same features, to support the UN's Sustainable Development Goal of ending modern slavery by 2030. Preliminary projects (supported by an Early Career Researcher Secondment to DigitalGlobe, funded by UoN's Impact Acceleration Account from the Economic and Social Research Council) focused on the brick manufacturing industry in India. This will extend to other activities such as fish farming, charcoal camps and mining, with distinctive signatures in satellite imagery. From 2015-2017, I was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow within the Nottingham Geospatial Institute (NGI), University of Nottingham, involved in the development of an online Citizen Science project to identify and classify changes on the surface of Mars. The research received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme FP7 (2007 - 2013) under grant agreement no 607379: www.i-mars.eu.

Past Research

I completed my Engineering Doctorate in 2015, which was a longitudinal study of the introduction and impact of User-Centred Design (UCD) methods on a healthcare informatics organisation, beyond improvements in the user interface and experience. It identified obstacles and opportunities for embedding UCD techniques in the organisation, their additional value to the organisation (beyond the identification of usability problems) and the strengths and weaknesses of the Action Research approach for investigation of design practice.

Future Research

My research interests span Geography (including Web GIS, cartography, spatial cognition and knowledge construction, health geography) and Human-Computer Interaction (from applied aspects such as user-centred design, usability engineering and design practice, to cognitive aspects including sense- and decision-making, information visualisation and affective interaction design), especially as it applies to geographical and so-called "Big" data. I am especially interested in the boundary between amateur and professional, and human and machine, capabilities.

Faculty of Engineering

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD



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