My dissertation research, conducted in the Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History (NMHH), examined the practices of classification and categorization in the museum’s ethnographic collections. I argue that in order to understand and foreground postcolonial approaches to material culture and history, it is necessary to understand how historical epistemologies and technological infrastructures shape our understanding of the past.I also look at how new digital technologies are used to represent material culture. With the 3D digitization of museum objects for example, I question how artefacts are actively constructed by those who create and manipulate their digital representations, and how the practice of digitization is a negotiation between community, museum, and technological infrastructure.
You can find more about my work by reading my publications: on the politics of access and digitization in museums; on decolonizing museum catalogs in the Journal Cataloging & Classification Quarterly; and on the computerization of museum collections in the upcoming special issue of Museum Anthropology (Fall 2016).
I have taught classes on Digital Artifacts and Museum Collections Management practice. I was also a research associate with the Semaphore Research Cluster at the University of Toronto, where we worked to understand children’s uses of 3D printing in Museum settings .
I completed my undergraduate degree in Anthropology at the University of Victoria, and my Master’s and PhD at the University of Toronto in the Faculty of Information. From 2008-2010 I also helped build the project, “The Reciprocal Research Network” at the Museum of Anthropology at UBC.