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  1. Dr Jon Bird

Contact Information


Visit Dr Jon Bird

A309I, College Building


Postal Address

City, University of London
Northampton Square
United Kingdom



I have a background in artificial intelligence and experimental psychology. My initial research involved developing learning algorithms for robots. Since 2008, I have combined my interests in technology and psychology and I focus on human-computer interaction.


PhD Artificial intelligence University of Sussex 2007
BSc Experimental psychology and artificial intelligence (first class honours) University of Sussex 1993



I design, prototype and evaluate ubiquitous computing technologies, including mobile and wearable systems and public displays. My research focuses on how technology can be used to address social and health issues. After initial lab-based developing and testing, I carry out evaluations in the real world, which often involves working closely with communities. As well as quantitative methods, I also employ qualitative approaches such as ethnography and participatory design.


One research interest is using technology to facilitate behavioural change, with a particular focus on sustainable behaviour and healthy eating. Another is the design of wearable haptic systems for training posture and body movements. Although I have developed novel hardware, my current research tends to focus on off-the-shelf systems. For example, I've been investigating ways to measure and minimise the stress associated with social networking, for example, using Facebook and managing email. I have also been using mobile phones for public health applications. In particular I have been involved in the development of MIVA, a system for carrying out verbal autopsies in the developing world.


Chapters (11)

  1. Gallacher, S., Jetter, H.-.C., Kalnikaite, V., McCann, J., Pendergast, D. and Bird, J. (2014). Investigating the applications and privacy issues of crowd sensing. Proceedings of Critical Making Hackathon: Situated Hacking, Surveillance and Big Data (CHI 2014)
  2. Bird, J., Osrin, D., Daruwallah, N. and Fottrell, E. (2014). Towards using mobile phones to inconspicuously report domestic violence in an Indian slum. Proceedings of Workshop on Inconspicuous Interaction (CHI 2014)
  3. Cecchinato, M.E., Bird, J. and Cox, A.L. (2014). Personalized email tools: A solution to email overload? Proceedings of Workshop on Personalizing Behavior Change Technologies (CHI 2014)
  4. Bird, J., Harrison, D. and Marshall, P. (2013). The challenge of maintaining interest in a large-scale public floor display. Workshop on Experiencing Interactivity in Public Spaces (CHI 2013)
  5. Zhou, Y., Bird, J., Cox, A. and Brumby, D. (2013). Estimating usage can reduce the stress of social networking. Personal Informatics Workshop (CHI 2013)
  6. Koeman, L., Rogers, Y. and Bird, J. (2013). Enabling foresight and reflection: Interactive simulations to support behaviour change. Personal Informatics Workshop (CHI 2013)
  7. Bird, J., Fozzati, D., Harrison, D. and Marshall, P. (2013). Healthy shopping: A longitudinal study of a mobile app to encourage a balanced diet. Workshop on Pervasive Technologies in Retail Environments (Ubicomp 2013)
  8. Bird, J. (2012). Purposeful purposelessness and the art of Andy Webster. Dawn Chorus (pp. 3-12–3-12). University College Falmouth.
  9. Singh, S., Bird, J., Marshall, P. and Rogers, Y. (2012). Mind your Step: Exploiting the potential of interactive floor displays. Proceedings of Ar-chi-tecture (CHI 2012)
  10. Stokes, D. and Bird, J. (2008). Evolutionary robotics and creative constraints. In Hardy-Vallée, B. and Payette, N. (Eds.), Beyond the Brain: Embodied, Situated and Distributed Cognition (pp. 227-245–227-245). Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
  11. Bird, J. and Di Paolo, E. (2008). Gordon Pask and his maverick machines. In Husbands, P. and Wheeler, M. (Eds.), The Mechanization of Mind in History (pp. 185-211–185-211). MIT Press.

Conference Papers and Proceedings (40)

  1. Balestrini, M., Marshall, P., Cornejo, R., Tentori, M., Bird, J., Rogers, Y. and ACM, (2016). Jokebox: Coordinating Shared Encounters in Public Spaces. .
  2. Booth, T., Stumpf, S., Bird, J. and Jones, S. (2016). Crossed wires: Investigating the problems of end-user developers in a physical computing task. .
  3. Vermeulen, J., Luyten, K., Coninx, K., Marquardt, N. and Bird, J. (2015). Proxemic flow: Dynamic peripheral floor visualizations for revealing and mediating large surface interactions. .
  4. Gallacher, S., O'Connor, J., Bird, J., Rogers, Y., Capra, L., Harrison, D. and Marshall, P. (2015). Mood squeezer: Lighteningupthe workplace through playful and lightweight interactions. .
  5. Cecchinato, M.E., Cox, A.L. and Bird, J. (2015). Working 9-5? Professional differences in email and boundary management practices. .
  6. Cecchinato, M.E., Cox, A.L. and Bird, J. (2015). Smartwatches: The good, the bad and the Ugly? .
  7. Harrison, D., Marshall, P., Bianchi-Berthouze, N. and Bird, J. (2015). Activity tracking: Barriers, workarounds and customisation. .
  8. Collins, E.I.M., Cox, A.L., Bird, J. and Cornish-Tresstail, C. (2014). Barriers to engagement with a personal informatics productivity tool. .
  9. Balestrini, M., Bird, J., Marshall, P., Zaro, A. and Rogers, Y. (2014). Understanding sustained community engagement: A case study in heritage preservation in rural Argentina. .
  10. Koeman, L., Kalnikaite, V., Rogers, Y. and Bird, J. (2014). What chalk and tape can tell us: Lessons learnt for next generation urban displays. .
  11. Gallacher, S., Jetter, H.-.C., Kalinikaité, V., McCann, J., Prendergast, D. and Bird, J. (2014). Investigating the challenges of crowd sensing: Lessons from Zurich. .
  12. Bird, J., Byass, P., Kahn, K. and Fottrell, E. (2013). A matter of life and death: Practical and ethical constraints in the development of a mobile verbal autopsy tool. .
  13. Akpan, I., Marshall, P., Bird, J. and Harrison, D. (2013). Exploring the effects of space and place on engagement with an interactive installation. .
  14. Stawarz, K., Cox, A., Bird, J. and Benedyk, R. (2013). I’d sit at home and do work emails: How tablets affect the work-life balance of office workers. .
  15. Bradley, A., Brumby, D., Cox, A. and Bird, J. (2013). How to manage your inbox: Is a once a day strategy best? .
  16. Brumby, D., Cox, A. and Bird, J. (2013). Too much email, too much checking. .
  17. Cox, A., Bird, J. and Fleck, R. (2013). Digital epiphanies: How self-knowledge can change habits and our attitudes towards them. .
  18. Harrison, D., Bird, J., Marshall, P. and Berthouze, N. (2013). Looking for bright spots: A bottom-up approach to encouraging urban exercise. .
  19. Gallacher, S., Kalinikaité, V., McCann, J., Prendergast, D., Bird, J. and Jetter, H.-.C. (2013). SenCity: Uncovering the hidden pulse of a city (workshop). .
  20. Bachour, K., Bird, J., Kalnikaité, V., Rogers, Y., Villar, N. and Kreitmayer, S. (2012). Fast and frugal shopping challenge. .
  21. Schöning, J., Rogers, Y., Bird, J., Capra, L., McCann, J.A., Prendergast, D. and Sheridan, C. (2012). Intel Collaborative Research Institute - Sustainable Connected Cities. .
  22. Bird, J. and Kalinikaité, V. (2011). The augmented shopping trolley: An ambient display to provide shoppers with non-obvious product information. .
  23. Bird, J. and Marshall, P. (2011). Empirically investigating the distinction between phenomenally present and phenomenally transparent tools. .
  24. Linden, J.V.D., Johnson, R.M.G., Bird, J., Rogers, Y. and Schoonderwaldt, E. (2011). Buzzing to play: lessons learned from an in the wild study of real-time vibrotactile feedback. .
  25. Kalnikaité, V., Rogers, Y., Bird, J., Villar, N., Bachour, K., Payne, S.J., Todd, P.M., Schöning, J., Krüger, A. and Kreitmayer, S. (2011). How to nudge in situ: Designing lambent devices to deliver salient information in supermarkets. .
  26. Bird, J. and Rogers, Y. (2010). The Pulse of Tidy Street: Measuring and publicly displaying domestic electricity consumption. .
  27. Bird, J. and Marshall, P. (2009). Using tactile communication to enhance awareness in a distributed multitouch game. .
  28. Bird, J. and Marshall, P. (2009). What have artists ever done For UbiComp? .
  29. Holland, S., Marshall, P. and Bird, J. (2009). Prototyping whole body navigation of harmony space. .
  30. Bird, J., Marshall, P. and Rogers, Y. (2009). Low-fi skin vision: A case study in rapid prototyping a sensory substitution system. .
  31. Holland, S., Marshall, P., Bird, J., Dalton, N.S., Morris, R., Pantidi, N., Rogers, Y. and Clark, A. (2009). Running up blueberry hill: Prototyping whole body interaction in harmony space. .
  32. Webster, A. and Bird, J. (2008). Better living through electrochemistry. .
  33. Bird, J., Holland, S., Marshall, P., Rogers, Y. and Clark, A. (2008). Feel the force: Using tactile technologies to Investigate the extended mind. .
  34. Bird, J., Husbands, P., Perris, M., Bigge, B. and Brown, P. (2008). Implicit fitness functions for evolving a drawing robot. .
  35. Bird, J. and Stokes, D. (2007). Minimal creativity, evaluation and pattern discrimination. .
  36. Brown, P., Bigge, B., Bird, J., Husbands, P., Perris, M. and Stokes, D. (2007). The Drawbots. .
  37. Bird, J., Faith, J. and Webster, A. (2003). Tabula Rasa: A case study in evolutionary curation. .
  38. Bird, J. (2001). Can wheeled robots illuminate adaptive behaviour? .
  39. van der Linden, J., Schoonderwaldt, E. and Bird, J. Good vibrations: Guiding body movements with vibrotactile feedback. .
  40. Koeman, L., Kalnikaite, V., Rogers, Y. and Bird, J. What Chalk and Tape Can Tell Us: Lessons Learnt for Next Generation Urban Displays. Pervasive Displays .

Journal Articles (12)

  1. Lorencatto, F., Gould, N.J., McIntyre, S.A., During, C., Bird, J., Walwyn, R., Cicero, R., Glidewell, L., Hartley, S., Stanworth, S.J., Foy, R., Grimshaw, J.M., Michie, S. and Francis, J.J. (2016). A multidimensional approach to assessing intervention fidelity in a process evaluation of audit and feedback interventions to reduce unnecessary blood transfusions: A study protocol. Implementation Science, 11(1) . doi:10.1186/s13012-016-0528-x.
  2. King, C., Zamawe, C., Banda, M., Bar-Zeev, N., Beard, J., Bird, J., Costello, A., Kazembe, P., Osrin, D. and Fottrell, E. (2016). The quality and diagnostic value of open narratives in verbal autopsy: A mixed-methods analysis of partnered interviews from Malawi Data collection, quality, and reporting. BMC Medical Research Methodology, 16(1) . doi:10.1186/s12874-016-0115-5.
  3. Byass, P., Herbst, K., Fottrell, E., Ali, M.M., Odhiambo, F., Amek, N., Hamel, M.J., Laserson, K.F., Kahn, K., Kabudula, C., Mee, P., Bird, J., Jakob, R., Sankoh, O. and Tollman, S.M. (2015). Comparing verbal autopsy cause of death findings as determined by physician coding and probabilistic modelling: a public health analysis of 54 000 deaths in Africa and Asia. JOURNAL OF GLOBAL HEALTH, 5(1), pp. 65–73. doi:10.7189/jogh.05.010402.
  4. Harrison, D., Marshall, P., Berthouze, N. and Bird, J. (2014). Tracking physical activity: Problems related to running longitudinal studies with commercial devices. UbiComp 2014 - Adjunct Proceedings of the 2014 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing pp. 699–702. doi:10.1145/2638728.2641320.
  5. Cox, A.L., Dray, S., Bird, J., Peters, A., Mauthner, N. and Collins, E. (2014). Socio-technical practices and work-home boundaries. MobileHCI 2014 - Proceedings of the 16th ACM International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services pp. 581–584. doi:10.1145/2628363.2634259.
  6. Collins, E.I.M., Cox, A.L., Bird, J. and Harrison, D. (2014). Social networking use and RescueTime: The issue of engagement. UbiComp 2014 - Adjunct Proceedings of the 2014 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing pp. 687–690. doi:10.1145/2638728.2641322.
  7. King, C., Hall, J., Banda, M., Beard, J., Bird, J., Kazembe, P. and Fottrell, E. (2014). Electronic data capture in a rural African setting: Evaluating experiences with different systems in Malawi. Global Health Action, 7(1) . doi:10.3402/gha.v7.25878.
  8. Kalinikaité, V., Bird, J. and Rogers, Y. (2012). Decision-making in the aisles: Informing, overwhelming or nudging supermarket shoppers? Personal and Ubiquitous Computing pp. 1-13–1-13.
  9. Linden, J.V.D., Schoonderwaldt, E., Bird, J. and Johnson, R.M.G. (2011). MusicJacket - Combining motion capture and vibrotactile feedback to teach violin bowing. IEEE T. Instrumentation and Measurement, 60, pp. 104–113. doi:10.1109/TIM.2010.2065770.
  10. Bird, J. (2011). The phenomenal challenge of designing transparent technologies. Interactions, 18, pp. 20–23. doi:10.1145/2029976.2029983.
  11. Bird, J., d Inverno, M. and Prophet, J. (2007). Net Work: An interactive artwork designed using an interdisciplinary performative approach. Digital Creativity, 18, pp. 11-23–11-23.
  12. Bullock, S., Smith, T. and Bird, J. (2006). Picture this: The state of the art in visualization for complex adaptive systems. Artificial Life, 12, pp. 189–192. doi:10.1162/artl.2006.12.2.189.

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City, University of London

Northampton Square

London EC1V 0HB

United Kingdom

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