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Clara Mancini

Senior Lecturer

Clara is a Senior Lecturer in Interaction Design and the head of the Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) Lab at The Open University. She founded the ACI Lab in 2011 and has since been leading its research program.

Clara is a member of the teaching team for The Open University’s module Interaction Design and User Experience. She also supervises doctoral students in ACI as well as interns and visiting students interested in collaborating with the ACI Lab.

The mission of The Open University's Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) Lab is to expand the boundaries of interaction design beyond the human species and its research aims include: investigating the interaction between animals and technology in naturalistic settings; designing interactive technology that can support animals in different contexts; and developing user-centred methods that enable animals to participate in the design process as legitimate contributors. I am particularly interested in the methodological challenges and innovation opportunities presented by ACI, and in the potential that this emerging discipline has to contribute to human and animal wellbeing, social inclusion, interspecies cooperation and environmental restoration.

ACI Lab's projects have included: identifying requirements for smart kennels to improve the welfare of dogs and other animals living confined; developing domestic canine interfaces to facilitate the work of mobility assistance dogs; developing a canine-centred interface to support the work of cancer detection dogs. 

PhD projects supported by the ACI Lab include: designing a canine alarm to support the work of assistance dogs (Charlotte Robinson); designing interactive toys for the enrichment of captive elephants (Fiona French); improving the wearability of biotelemetric devices for free living animals (Patricia Paci).

Clara teaches within The Open University's module TM356 on Interaction Design and User Experience.

Clara is currently supervising doctoral students and candidates in the following areas: designing a canine alarm to support the work of assistance dogs (Charlotte Robinson); designing interactive toys for the enrichment of captive elephants (Fiona French); improving the wearability of biotelemetric devices for free living animals (Patricia Paci). 

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Senior Lecturer


Associated with:

Computing and Communications
Information and Communications Technology


Tel: +441908652165
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