Projects and partners

An overview of our current projects.

Musical instruments for elephants

This project is part of a wider research initiative to investigate perception and welfare in other species and is connected to previous work on designing environmental enrichment for elephants.

Technology has been used extensively to enable humans to interact with the world and perceive phenomena that we are incapable of discerning with our own neurobiological systems. Research into dimensions of perception experienced by other species is developing as we make progress in understanding signals made by non-human animals. The team is exploring ways of capturing and producing infrasound (low frequency acoustic signals outside human hearing range), as well as designing a system that will enable an elephant to control aspects of auditory output.

Facial Muscle Rehabilitation

The team have been collaborating with medical professionals and people who have Parkinson’s in order to develop a system that supports independent rehabilitation of weakened facial muscles.

The plan is to use a combination of VR and topical sensors or computer vision techniques to design an app that allows users to monitor themselves and motivates them to undertake physiotherapy via a playful interface. Working with our Research Support students, the team created a proof-of-concept and are now building connections within the community so we can grow our PPI (patient and public involvement) focus group and test future prototypes.

Zoo Jam

This project encompasses a series of workshops that have been taking place since 2016, drawing together animal welfare specialists, computer scientists, interaction designers, engineers and others to collaborate on design briefs themed around a specific animal welfare issue at each event.

Zoo Jam themes have covered the design of hunting experiences for captive predators, products to enhance farm animal welfare, provision of auditory enrichment, reptile-focused tangible enrichment, exploration of non-human perceptive modalities and most recently, improving welfare for nocturnal species.

Critical Citizenship

The team comprises staff and students at London Metropolitan University, who are collaborating to develop and test materials that introduce people to the idea of citizenship and how every individual can make life choices that have an impact.

This is an exciting project that aims to foster confidence, autonomy, decision-making skills and environmental awareness within the community, with an emphasis on inclusive practice and critical reflection.

3D models of human faces with underlying muscle structure

Image: 3D models of human faces with underlying muscle structure by Games Modelling, Animation and Effects BSc students Nathaniel Durant and Mateusz Jarzembiński.

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