Appearances & Events

Miłosz Markocki

Miłosz Markocki, Ph.D. is an independent researcher based in Toruń, Poland, whose expertise and research concerns fantasy fiction and online gaming (especially massively multiplayer online role-playing games), as well as the related communities. He has published several peer-reviewed journal articles about online gaming and machinima videos. He is also the author of book chapters concerning game mechanics, storytelling, and various aspects of gameworld design (including cultural framework features), as well as online player communities and related culture.

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Dariusz Brzostek

Dariusz Brzostek, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Cultural Studies at Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, Poland. His main research interests include sound studies, science and technology studies, science fiction, and horror studies. He has published a book and peer-reviewed journal articles about sound studies, postmodern horror, and media archaeology. His current research project concerns early Polish electronic music (Polish Radio Experimental Studio), counterculture in Poland, Communist Era science fiction, and history of jazz.

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Katarzyna Marak

Katarzyna Marak, Ph. D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Cultural Studies at Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, Poland; she is the author of Japanese and American Horror: A Comparative Study of Film, Fiction, Graphic Novels and Video Games, and has published a number of papers and chapters concerning independent games, game mechanics, player experience, and player/fan reception, as well as comparative analyses of horror texts. Her research interests include game studies, with particular emphasis on independent game texts, supernatural horror fiction, and testimonies of reception.

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Elizabeth LaPensée

Elizabeth LaPensée, Ph.D. is an award-winning designer, writer, artist, and researcher who creates and studies Indigenous-led media such as games and comics. She is Anishinaabe with family from Bay Mills, Métis, and Irish. She is an Assistant Professor of Media & Information and Writing, Rhetoric & American Cultures at Michigan State University and a 2018 Guggenheim Fellow. Most recently, she designed When Rivers Were Trails (2019), a 2D adventure game following a displaced Anishinaabe during allotment in the 1890’s which won the Adaptation Award at IndieCade 2019. She also designed and created art for Thunderbird Strike (2017), a lightning-searing side-scroller...

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Brian Winn

Brian M. Winn is the Founder and Director of the Games for Entertainment and Learning (GEL) Lab and the Game Development program at Michigan State University. Winn is also a Full Professor and Associate Chair in the Department of Media and Information. Winn designs, creates, and researches interactive media experiences. Winn’s expertise is in designing “meaningful play” that combine games and meaningful objectives (such as learning, persuasion, motivation, and fitness). Winn’s “Design, Play, Experience Framework” presents a process for designing meaningful play. And Winn’s award-winning work has been presented, exhibited, and experienced around the world. Winn was a founder of the International Conference on Meaningful Play and has co-chaired the bi-annual conference since...

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Rabindra Ratan

Rabindra (Robby) Ratan is an Associate Professor and AT&T Scholar at Michigan State University’s Department of Media and Information. He is also an affiliated faculty member of the MSU Center for Gender in a Global Context, the MSU Department of Psychology, and the MSU College of Education’s program in Educational Psychology and Educational Technology. Ratan received his Ph.D. from USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, his M.A. in Communication from Stanford University, and his B.A. in Science, Technology and Society, also from Stanford University. Generally, Dr. Ratan conducts research on the effects of human-technology interaction, examining how media technologies (e.g.,...

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Pamela McCorduck

Pamela McCorduck is the author of eleven published books, four of them novels, seven of them non-fiction, mainly about aspects of artificial intelligence. She lived for forty years in New York City until family called her back to California where she now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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Eric Klopfer

Eric Klopfer is Professor and Director of the Scheller Teacher Education Program and The Education Arcade at MIT (link to CV). He is the Head of the department of Comparative Media Studies and Writing.  He is also a co-faculty advisor for MIT’s J-WEL World Education Lab. His work uses a Design Based Research methodology to span the educational technology ecosystem, from design and development of new technologies to professional development and implementation. Much of Klopfer’s research has focused on computer games and simulations for building understanding of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. He is the co-author of the books, “Adventures in...

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Kara Grijalva

Kara Grijalva is a specialist in early childhood and early grade education for low- resource and conflict-affected communities worldwide. Her professional work focuses on providing organizations with the strategies and technical capacity to support teaching and learning in environments marked by resource scarcity and political or social instability. Previously, Kara has worked for a range of international organizations in over 25 countries, focused on bolstering community-driven, culturally sensitive education systems, national policy development, teacher professional development, curriculum building, technology use, and monitoring and evaluation. Kara holds an M.Ed in International Education Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and...

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Meredith Thompson

Meredith Thompson draws upon her background in science education and outreach as a research scientist and lecturer for the Scheller Teacher Education Program. Her research interests are in collaborative learning, STEM educational games, and using virtual and simulated environments for learning STEM topics. She has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Cornell, a master’s in science and engineering education from Tufts, and a doctorate in science education from Boston University. Her projects have focused on collaborative learning, innovative learning designs leveraging technology, and teacher education. She has worked on curriculum development for Engineering is Elementary curriculum at the Museum of...

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