Professor Jonathan Dovey

Digital Culture Research Centre and Pervasive Media Studio at the University of the West of England
Professor Jonathan Dovey

Professor Jonathan Dovey

Digital Culture Research Centre and Pervasive Media Studio at the University of the West of England
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Jon Dovey is Professor of Screen Media at the Faculty of Arts, Creative Industries, and Education at the University of the West of England, Bristol.  He has taught at Plymouth University, UWE and Bristol University teaching a wide range of film, media and digital courses in both practice and theory. In 2008 he launched (UWE’s) Digital Cultures Research Centre which he Directed until 2012.

In 2012 he became the Director of REACT (Research and Enterprise for Arts and Creative Technologies) one of four Hubs for the Creative Economy funded by the AHRC. Led by UWE and Watershed, REACT is an  Arts, Technology, and Business Collaboration aiming to produce 50 innovative media prototypes in four years (

He was also Co Investigator on the AHRC Connected Communities Creative Citizens Project where he led a strand on the impact of informal creative economies on communities ( He is currently PI on the Ambient Literature research project and Co-I on ‘Bristol and Bath by Design’ evaluating the design ecology of the region. He is currently researching and writing on ‘The Practice of Cultural Ecology’.

Twitter @ProffJon



‘The living embodies the ambiguous record of the change of the world in which it unfolds. This is the narration of the living.’ Mihai Nadin [1]
This presentation will open up some of the underlying ideas in the AHRC funded Ambient Literature research project, an investigation of the potential for situated literary experiences in digitally enabled environments. Ambiguity is not a mode of experience that one might normally assocate or want from computing experiences; clearly computers present as rational machines, subject to the laws of maths and physics and in truth I don’t want an ambiguous experience when I fire up my email system or spreadsheet in the morning. But when it comes to art and culture the situation is different. And here is hard to resist starting with William Empson’s famous excavation of ambiguity as a key to literary experience.  There is already a distinguished history of the importance of ambiguous design in UX, here I want to extend that tradition for the contemporary attention economy and argue for a poetics alert to embodiment, textuality, sonics and technology that enhances awareness and understanding of the intrinsic phenomena of the world that we share.


[1] Nadin M ‘Antecapere ergo sum: what price knowledge’ AI & Society Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 39-50 Springer Verlag 2013   p 46


 Recent publications include:

Citizenship, Value & Digital Culture Jon Dovey Giota Alevizou and Andy Williams in Creative Citizen Unbound ed Hargreaves I & Hartley J. (2016)  Policy Press Bristol.

From Networks to Complexity David Harte, Jon Dovey, Emma Agusita and Theodore Zamenopoulos Creative Citizen Unbound ed Hargreaves I & Hartley J. (2016)  in Policy Press Bristol.

Rethinking value: network connectivity in the creative economy Jon Dovey & Simon Moreton in Cultural Trends Vol. 25, No. 2 (2016).

Ambient Literature – Framing Coalescence : in Ubiquitous Computing Complexity and Culture  eds Ekman, Bolter, Diaz, Sondergaard and Engberg. MIT Mass 2016.

Cultural Value Networks  with Goetz Bachman, Jeanette Monaco and Bill Sharpe Report for AHRC Connected Communities 2012 summary available at