The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis


Efstathia Kostopoulou

Efstathia Kostopoulou
VisAge: Augmented Reality for Heritage, during Brighton Open City Door Festival, 2015

Thesis Title: Community Memories Documentation and Experience in Localities_ The Physical and Digital Interfaces

Primary Supervisor: Ava Fatah gen. Schieck (BSA)

Second Supervisor: Andrew Hudson-Smith (CASA)

Efstathia Kostopoulou is an architect and urban designer, holding a MSc in Advanced Architectural Studies from Bartlett, UCL. Her work spans across urban design and heritage to media architecture, infrastructures and the publics. She is currently a PhD student at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, affiliated with CASA. Her research looks into affective digital and physical experiences that relate public spaces to local memory and culture. Efstathia further works as a placemaking professional, commissioning and facilitating a number of projects in East London.

Research summary
In the digital turn there has been a significant effort documenting local stories and memories as oral histories but also various artifacts such as photographs that relate local or national memory to the built environment of the neighborhoods and localities. Citizen heritage initiatives in a voluntary basis have been increasingly gaining social and cultural value but also an additional dimension in place making for individuals and communities who actively engage with the process or experience the community narratives.
This study explores how we design and meaningfully engage with digital-physical interfaces for community memories. There is a main hypothesis that immersive, situated experience of archives in public space mediated by new technologies can stimulate communities’ creativity and personal involvement. The research takes into account selected case studies and their agents and though primarily qualitative methodology tries to address best practice for the appropriation and experience of heritage as activation of the digital archive narratives in (urban) space. This study aims to contribute to the design interface, physical urban and digital, with the provision of local memory.

Research themes
public space, digital and physical placemaking, archives, memory