Visitors and Postdoctoral Associates

CMS/W takes pride in welcoming young and established scholars and helping them advance their own work by pairing them with one of our research groups. Past visitors have played key roles in our speaker series, contributed to masters student theses, and established long-term ties between MIT and other institutions.

How how to join us as a visiting scholar or postdoctoral associate.

Nancy Baym
Research Affiliate
Nancy Baym Nancy Baym is a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research New England, a couple of blocks to the east of CMS/W's haunts. Her work focuses on interpersonal relationships and new technologies. She is the author of Personal Connections in the Digital Age (Polity 2010), Internet Inquiry (co-authored with Annette Markham) (Sage 2009) and Tune In, Log On: Soaps Fandom and Online Community (Sage 1999). Her current research is about musicians' relationships with audiences and how social media affect them.
Chris Buttimer
Postdoctoral Associate
Chris Buttimer Chris Buttimer is a postdoctoral associate and educational researcher in the Teaching Systems Lab. His research focuses on supporting teachers to incorporate equity teaching, including through the use of MOOCs, blended learning spaces, and action research. Chris is also a former middle school ELA teacher in the Cambridge (MA) Public Schools, and he has extensive experience providing professional development to teachers in MA and GA around adolescent literacy, socioemotional learning, and youth participatory action research. He holds an Ed.D. and Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, an M.Ed. from UMass Boston, and a B.A. from Wake Forest University
Katerina Cizek
MIT Visiting Artist
Katerina Cizek Director of the National Film Board of Canada’s multi-year HIGHRISE project, Katerina Cizek is an Emmy-winning documentary-maker working across multiple media platforms. Prior to HIGHRISE, she worked as the NFB’s Filmmaker in Residence. Her work has documented the digital revolution and has itself become part of the movement.

For more information on the MIT Visiting Artists Program, visit Arts@MIT.
Joshua Glick
Fellow, Open Documentary Lab
Joshua Glick Joshua Glick is an A​ssistant Professor of English and Film & Media Studies at Hendrix College and affiliate faculty at Columbia University, where he teaches in their Global Core. He holds a Ph.D. in Film & Media Studies and American Studies from Yale University. Glick’s research, teaching, and public humanities projects focus on documentary, race and representation, cultural studies, the comparative histories of cinema, TV, and radio, and emerging media. His writing has appeared in Jump Cut, Film Quarterly, World Records, Film History, Documentary, The Moving Image, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, and numerous edited volumes. Glick served as the digital media curator and produced the award-winning documentary This Side of Dreamland (2016) for the NEH-funded museum exhibition, Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland, 1861–2008. His book Los Angeles Documentary and the Production of Public History, 1958–1977 was recently published by the University of California Press. Glick is currently co-editing a volume with Patricia Aufderheide that brings scholars and practitioners into dialogue around the ethics and aesthetics of social justice filmmaking. He is also researching a new book project on contemporary documentary and the media industries as well as collaborating with the flagship PBS series POV on a digitization and community outreach initiative.
Eric Gordon
Visiting Professor
Eric Gordon Eric Gordon is a professor of civic media and the director of the Engagement Lab at Emerson College in Boston. His research focuses on the transformation of public life and governance in digital culture, specifically looking at the context of equitable and generative “smart cities.” For the last ten years, Professor Gordon has explored the role of play and creativity in civic life, looking at how game systems and playful processes can augment traditional modes of civic participation. He has served as an expert advisor for local and national governments, as well as NGOs around the world, designing responsive processes that help organizations transform to meet their stated values. He has created over a dozen games for public sector use and advised organizations on how to build their own inclusive and meaningful processes. He is the author of two books about media and cities (The Urban Spectator (2010) and Net Locality (2011)) and is the editor of Civic Media: Technology, Design, Practice (MIT Press, 2016) and the forthcoming Ludics: Play as Humanistic Inquiry (Palgrave, 2020). His most recent monograph, Meaningful Inefficiencies: Civic Design in an Age of Digital Expediency (Oxford University Press, 2020) examines practices in government, journalism and NGOs that reimagine innovation beyond efficiency to focus on play and care.
Garron Hillaire
Postdoctoral Associate
Garron Hillaire Garron Hillaire completed his B.A in Mathematics (philosophy option) from the University of Washington and his Ed. M. Technology Innovation and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. After working as an Educational Software Architect at where he researched Universal Design for Learning (UDL) for four year he enrolled in the Open World Learning research program at the Open University, UK as a Ph.D. candidate in Educational Technology. His thesis focuses on emotional measurement and emotional design in online and blended learning with a focus on sentiment analysis using crowd sourcing methods.

Currently he is a postdoctoral associate at the CMS/W department at MIT where he is part of the Teaching Systems Lab as a member of the Equity Teacher Practice team which focuses on teacher education using practice spaces such as the Teacher Moments simulations. Practice spaces allow teachers to practice how to interact with colleagues and students to better understand issues of equity as it relates to topics like computer science education in K-12 settings. The Equity Teacher Practice team works with professional development organizations, teacher education programs in higher education, and school districts to support teacher professional development on equity. He is exploring how emotional measures can help teachers to reflect on their practice.
Melissa Kagen
Visiting Scholar
Melissa Kagen Melissa Kagen holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University (2016) and has spent the last several years as a lecturer in Digital Media & Gaming at Bangor University in Wales. She has published work in Game Studies, Convergence, The German Quarterly, The Opera Quarterly, and The Year’s Work in Nerds, Wonks, and Neocons, as well as a forthcoming article in Gamevironments. She is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Gaming & Virtual Worlds. Her research focuses on walking simulators, postcolonial play, gendered gaming, and intersections between participatory theater and videogames​. Wandering Games​, her current book project, considers the different ways that bodies can wander (and players can be wanderers) depending on the game world. She is excited to spend this year in collaboration with the Game Lab, working on transgressive, counter-colonialist play of board games and video games.
Laura Larke
Postdoctoral Associate
Laura Larke Dr. Laura Larke is a qualitative researcher and social theorist interested in equity and power in K-12 computer science education. She is a postdoctoral associate and teaching fellow at the MIT Teaching Systems Lab, affiliate of Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, and associate editor at Policy & Internet. She was previously a postdoctoral researcher at the Oxford Internet Institute and completed her DPhil and MSc in the University of Oxford’s Learning & New Technologies Research Group. She is also a strong proponent of public education, former community college student, and graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz.

During the 2020-21 academic year, Dr. Larke will continue her work on two NSF-funded projects, both focused on broadening participation and success in K-12 computer science education. She will be supporting teacher-educators’ authoring of digital clinical simulations for use in pre-service and in-service computer science teacher training. Additionally, she will be shepherding a researcher-practitioner partnership between five public school districts, the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents (M.A.S.S.), MIT, and UMass Boston to rework internal systems and practices in order for schools to move towards our shared goal of CSforAll. Dr. Larke will also be co-teaching the Learning, Media, and Technology Seminar (CMS.595/.895) in Fall 2020.
Lisa Parks
Visiting Professor of Comparative Media Studies
Lisa Parks Lisa Parks is a media scholar whose research focuses on three areas: satellite technologies and global media; critical studies of media infrastructures; and media, militarization and surveillance. Parks is the author of Cultures in Orbit: Satellites and the Televisual (Duke U Press, 2005), Rethinking Media Coverage: Vertical Mediation and the War on Terror (Routledge, 2018), and Mixed Signals: Media Infrastructures and Cultural Geographies (in progress). She is co-editor of Life in the Age of Drone Warfare (Duke U Press, 2017), Signal Traffic: Critical Studies of Media Infrastructures (U of Illinois Press, 2015), Down to Earth: Satellite Technologies, Industries and Cultures (Rutgers U Press, 2012), Undead TV (Duke UP, 2007), and Planet TV: A Global Television Reader (NYU Press, 2002).

She is currently working on two new books, On Media: Twenty-one Lessons for the Twenty-first Century, and the co-edited volume, Media Backends: The Politics of Infrastructure, Clouds, and Artificial Intelligence. Parks also serves as editor of the Network Sovereignty blog, supported by a National Science Foundation grant.

Parks is a 2018 MacArthur Fellow and was founding Director of MIT's Global Media Technologies and Cultures Lab. She has held other fellowships and visiting appointments at the International Research Center for Cultural Techniques & Media Philosophy (IKKM) at the Bauhaus University in Weimar, Institute for Advanced Study (Wissenschaftskolleg) in Berlin, McGill University, University of Southern California, and the Annenberg School of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. She has been a PI on major grants from the National Science Foundation and the US State Department, and has collaborated with artists and computer scientists. She is committed to exploring how greater understanding of media systems can inform and assist citizens, scholars and policymakers in the US and abroad to advance campaigns for technological literacy, creative expression, social justice, and human rights.

After serving as Professor of Comparative Media Studies and Science, Technology and Society at MIT, in July 2020 Parks accepted a Distinguished Professor position in the Department of Film and Media Studies at University of California-Santa Barbara, where she will continue her work as Director of the Global Media Technologies and Cultures Lab. She will also be a Visiting Professor at MIT in 2020-21 to finish work with students.
Alexander Pfeiffer
Postdoctoral Fellow
Alexander Pfeiffer Alexander Pfeiffer is recipient of a Max Kade Fellowship awarded by the Austrian Academy of Science to work at MIT with The Education Arcade. His research focus as a postdoctoral fellow is on blockchain technologies and their impact on game-based education and learning assessment.

Before joining MIT, Alexander headed the center for applied game studies at Danube-University Krems, Austria, for eight years. He is also co-founder of the Austrian-based tech start-up Picapipe GmbH and the Malta-based B & P Emerging Technologies Consultancy Lab Ltd. He holds a doctorate and a social and economic sciences degree (mag.rer.soc.oec) from the Vienna University of Economics and Business, a Master of Arts from Danube-University Krems, and an Executive MBA from Alaska Pacific University, Anchorage.

Besides this particular research his fields of interests are e-sports, media studies, emerging technologies, game studies and binge-watching TV series.
Patricia Saulis
MLK Visiting Scholar
Patricia Saulis Patricia Saulis is Wolastoqey (Maliseet) from Wolastoq Negotkuk (Tobique First Nation in New Brunswick, Canada). As an MLK Visiting Scholar, Saulis will collaborate with her faculty host, Professor James Paradis from Comparative Media Studies/Writing, on a course titled, “Transmedia Art, Extraction and Environmental Justice” and engage with MIT Center for Environmental Health Sciences on their EPA Superfund-related work in the Northeastern United States. She will work closely with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) and the Native American Students Association in raising awareness of the challenges impacting our Indigenous students. Through dialogue and presentations, she will help promote the understanding of Indigenous Peoples’ culture and help identify strategies to create a more inclusive campus for our Indigenous community.