The Team

Prof Nelya Koteyko

Nelya Koteyko is Professor of Language and Communication at QMUL interested in online communication and interaction (digital linguistic ethnography and digital pragmatics).

Nelya is the Principal Investigator on this project.

Prof John Vines

John Vines is Professor of Design Informatics at the University of Edinburgh. His research is in the field of human-computer interaction, and focuses on how people experience and use digital and data-driven technologies in their everyday lives. He also often uses participatory approaches to create new systems, designing prototypes of new technologies with groups often not involved in design processes.

John is a Co-Investigator on this project.

Dr Martine van Driel

Martine van Driel received her PhD from the University of Birmingham in 2018. Her research expertise is in reader response, evaluative language, and new media. Her projects have focused on online news reporting, podcasting, and social media.

Martine is working as a postdoctoral researcher on this project.

Contact her at: m.vandriel [at]

Follow her on Twitter at: @MartinevanDriel

Dr Belen Barros Pena

Belen has been an interaction designer and technology researcher in the software industry since 2007. During that time, she has worked on all kinds of software and platforms: from web applications to mobile operating systems; and for all kinds of sectors and verticals (finance, telecommunications, government, development tools and free / open source software). In 2017, she started her PhD in Human Computer Interaction at the School of Design of Northumbria University, where she was supervised by Prof. John Vines. Her PhD research examined the ideas about the nature of money that underpin the design of digital financial technologies, and the implications they have for groups deemed “vulnerable”. Belen was awarded her doctorate in September 2021.

Belen is working as a postdoctoral researcher on this project.

Dr Simona Manni

Simona has a background as a participatory filmmaker and facilitator working in community settings. She worked with a wide range of groups, including asylum seekers, people with experience of mental health problems, homeless young people, and care home residents living with dementia, using digital storytelling as a way to support self-expression. In 2018, she started a PhD at the Digital Creativity Labs, University of York, where she was supervised by Prof. Marian Ursu and Dr. Jonathan Hook. Her PhD research looked at how interactive filmmaking and non-linear storytelling can support participatory accounts of mental health by people with lived experience. Simona was awarded her doctorate in November 2022.

Simona is working as a postdoctoral researcher on this project.

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