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Designed for Work, but not from Here: Rural and Remote Perspectives on Networked Technology

While workers in an urban environment typically enjoy full speed, always available, broadband access, those in rural and remote environments do not necessarily have access to the same level of service. In this paper we describe insights from a qualitative study examining the benefits and continued challenges of using networked technologies for work purposes in rural and remote communities. Our findings indicate that work in these areas increasingly depends on networked technology to support in-situ and geographically distributed work practices, and to ameliorate health and safety issues, but that participants experience significant challenges in obtaining signal access and stability. We discuss implications for design and future research that arise from our findings.


Melvin, R. and Bunt, A. (2012) Designed for Work, but not from Here: Rural and Remote Perspectives on Networked Technology, Proceedings of ACM Conference on Designing Interactive Systems (DIS 2012), pp. 176-185.

Bibtext Entry

author = {Melvin, Roberta M. and Bunt, Andrea},
title = {Designed for work, but not from here: rural and remote perspectives on networked technology},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the Designing Interactive Systems Conference},
series = {DIS '12},
year = {2012},
isbn = {978-1-4503-1210-3},
location = {Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom},
pages = {176--185},
numpages = {10},
url = {http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/2317956.2317984},
doi = {10.1145/2317956.2317984},
acmid = {2317984},
publisher = {ACM},
address = {New York, NY, USA},
keywords = {networked technologies, qualitative studies, rural and remote environments},


Andrea Bunt

Andrea Bunt

Associate Professor