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Elizabeth Rodwell


Assistant Professor of Digital Media
Information and Logistics Technology
Ph.D., Rice University

344 Brazos Hall (Sugar Land campus)

Biographical Summary

I am a media anthropologist who is interested in interactivity, television, emergent technology (in general), and artificial intelligence (specifically). I am also a usability researcher (UX). My first book Push the Button: Interactive Television and Collaborative Journalism in Japan (forthcoming) examines the post-Fukushima tensions in the Japanese journalism and television industries, and seeks to account for the ways that media professionals are responding to increasingly skeptical and distracted audiences. I also track the global debut of interactive television in Japan– a cutting-edge fusion of mediums that represented the most dramatic departure from existing television technology in several decades. I was interested in examining how the concept and practice of participation change as technology evolves the means by which people can contribute.

Currently I am working on a project at the intersection of artificial intelligence / machine learning and user experience (UX). Partnering with UX researchers and designers in companies both in the U.S. and Japan, and I am exploring what it means to think about usability when we’re attempting to replicate human interaction via machine.


  • Ph.D., Anthropology - Rice University
  • M.A., Social Sciences - University of Chicago
  • M.A. Media Studies - New School University
  • B.A., New Media Theory - Brown University

Research Interests

Media anthropology, UX, usability, anthropology of work, television, journalism, interactivity, collaborative media, affect, artificial intelligence, machine learning, data science (as a student-observer), creative writing, Japan and the United States.


  • User Experience Principles
  • Senior Project
  • Advanced UX Principles