The Bartlett School of Architecture


Yuhan Ji

Image: Yuhan Ji


Situating Media Infrastructure: Understanding the Role of Public Space Characters in Influencing Public Interaction with Media Infrastructure

First and second supervisors


The fall in cost of display technology and ubiquity of network technology has driven the expansion of media infrastructure, especially screen networks in the city. Due to the complex nature of outdoor environments, communication between pedestrians and screen content is significantly affected by its situated location. With this concern, the spatial distribution of digital screens and their display content has been posited as an important aspect to consider in the real-world planning and implementation. To select a more supportive environment to deploy screens, it is necessary to identify the characteristics of public spaces that facilitate interactions, and consider them in the future media infrastructure siting.

This research seeks to define the affordance of public space characters in accommodating public interaction with media infrastructure, through the cooperation between urban design and HCI insights. Initially, the review of existing literature helps to identify the characteristics with high odds to support interactions for evaluation. The research will dissect public space characters inclusively from three dimensions: physical, spatial and human activities. Then, it involves a comparative case study of two emergent screen networks that serve a public purpose - InLinkUK network in London and Glasgow. The case study aims to deliver an exhaustive evaluation on how these characteristics influence the interactions with kiosk screens. Followed by analysis of existing documents and related regulations, the research maps out the key decision makers and their criteria for kiosk placement. By comparing the current siting criteria with characteristics defined to support interaction from the case study, the research outcome would inform what location settings should be considered in the future planning of media infrastructure. 


Yuhan Ji is currently a PhD candidate on the Architectural Space and Computation programme at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. Her research explores the affordance of public space characters in accommodating pedestrian interactions with screen networks. She holds an Urban Planning BEng from the Nanjing University of Technology and an Urban Design MArch from Bartlett, UCL. Previously, Yuhan practiced as a design consultant at East China Architectural Design & Research Institute (ECADI) in Shanghai. 


  • Ji, Y; Fatah gen. Schieck, A; (2018) Exploring the Role of Data-supported Social Interaction manifested through Public Displays. In: Proceedings of Media Architecture Biennale - 2018. ACM: Beijing, China.
  • Ji, Y; Fatah gen. Schieck, A; (2019). InLinkUK: a case study of digital street infrastructure. In Proceedings of the 8th ACM International Symposium on Pervasive Displays (PerDis '19). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, Article 35, 1–2.

Image: by Yuhan Ji