smartphones. networks. human nature.


I am Roger Whitaker, Professor of mobile and biosocial computing at Cardiff University, with interests concerning Informatics, the study of the structure, behaviour and interactions involving natural and engineered computational systems. My particular focus is on mobile and biosocial issues, conducted through the mobisoc-lab. Human cognition is heavily supported by technology, with smartphones and social networks playing fundamental roles in the delivery and collection of diverse information. We explore the interaction between technology and human nature, using in-the-wild, social simulation  and empirical studies.

mobisoc-lab projects seek to better understand the human relationship with pervasive computation and communication, and the implications for human cognition, organisations, society and future technological design. We founded mobisoc in 2010, bringing “social computing” to the School of Computer Science and Informatics and Cardiff University! Our research is predicated on creating, obtaining, fusing and analysing interesting and often new forms of data and information. We obtain these from a range of sources including smartphone apps, human experience sampling, online networks and simulation. As a result the mobisoc-lab forms part of Cardiff University’s Data Innovation Institute, interacting with the Social Science Research Park (SPARK).

Research in mobile and biosocial computing has emerged as a consequence of mobile “cell” phones and social networks. We now work across computational, cognitive and social disciplines, with live collaborations including engineering, social psychology, evolutionary psychology, journalism, sociology and neuroscience.

Acknowledgement: image courtesy of Uditha Wickramanayaka under CC.