Christena Nippert-Eng

Cognitive sociology, culture, technology, work, the home, time and space, ethnography.

Ph.D. 1994, University of New York at Stony Brook

Dr. Nippert-Eng is currently wrapping up a research project entitled, “Islands of Privacy,” funded by the AIM program at the Intel Corporation. In March of 2005 she began work on the concept of “security” by conducting fieldwork in the New York City subway system with Noah McLain and Harvey Molotch. She spent the summer of 2006 writing on secrets and secrecy.

Major Accomplishments
Professor Nippert-Eng’s work has been featured extensively in the media, including radio, television and newspaper interviews ranging from NPR’s “Talk of the Nation” to the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, and Fast Company. She has been an invited speaker for such diverse venues as the Smithsonian Museum, the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons’ Pediatric Group, Reason Magazine’s Dynamic Visions conference, MotherRead, and the Industrial Design Society of America.

Dr. Nippert-Eng teaches film, project, field and lecture-based courses at IIT. Prior to its merger with Domas, she also taught for two years at the Interactive Design Institute in Ivrea, Italy. Currently, she enjoys a growing relationship with the Instituto des Artes Visuais (IADE) in Lisbon, Portugal, where she serves on the editorial board for The (Radical) Designist, Journal of Design Culture. In December 2006 she also joined the editorial board of the International Journal of Design, edited by Lin-Lin Chen at the Graduate Institute of Design, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology.

Professor Nippert-Eng has held elected council positions for the American Sociological Association’s sections on the “Sociology of Culture” and “Work, Organization and Occupations.” She was a transition team member on the Labor Committee for Illinois Governor-elect Rod Blagoyevich and a member of the advisory board for Dr. Nina Wakeford’s research center, INCITE, at the University of Surrey in London. She is a founding partner of the Chicago Graduate Student Ethnography Conference.

In addition to collaborations with other scholars and non-profit organizations Dr. Nippert-Eng conducts industrial research on people’s behavior and relationships with objects and spaces, including information and communication technologies. She also consults with in-house research groups on the use of ethnographic methods for industrial applications. Past clients include Hewlett-Packard, Motorola, Gillette, Hilton Hotels, and Steelcase.