This workshop focuses on the material qualities of dislocation. The process of humans becoming separated from each other is likely to have diverse consequences; from shifting frequency, modes, or routines of communication and collaboration, to completely alternate means of connection. In this workshop, we aim to discuss a broad range of material manifestations and implications of (researching and designing for) dislocation. While engaging with material qualities of dislocation, we will reflect on the state of the art, discuss research gaps and potentials, and explore hands-on how design can create opportunities for (re)connection in response to dislocation through the creation of tangible interfaces.

Key questions guiding the workshop:

  • Which physical / socio-cultural / material practices do exist, whether technologically mediated or not, to reconnect in case of dislocation?
  • Which materials or which interactive qualities are promising to be used for reconnecting?
  • How can material qualities account for the (often invisible) networked digital apparatus surrounding dislocated interactions?
  • How can we study the way material qualities in dislocation are actively adopted in everyday practices and how people give meaning to them?


We invite researchers, who have dealt with dislocation of different kinds, to participate; for instance, they may have (anecdotal or empirical) experience with practices of or design for dislocation; or they may have design ideas, designed systems or speculations about materials that would facilitate (re-)connection.

Submission- UPDATE

We have now opened the workshop to everyone who’s interested!

All you have to do is to send an email with a few lines to  indicating why you are interested to participate in the workshop…

… and register for the workshop using the following code: 20WS419

Important Dates

  • Submission of position paper: April 8 Deadline extended: April 19
  • Notifications to authors: May 2
  • Early bird registration: May 13
  • Workshop at ECSCW: Sunday, June 9
  • ECSCW main conference: June 10 – 12

Envisioned program

The workshop will kick off by an introduction: the organizers will give an overview of the topic, including their own readings of dislocation and reconnections. Afterwards, the participants will be asked to briefly present their positions. After each position presentation, the organizers, together with the participants, will map those positions on an initial landscape of dislocation qualities, employed materials, and reconnection practices. Subsequently, the group tries to create a coherent landscape based on these positions; potentially, this will also lead to an identification of blind spots. In the afternoon, a session where we play with materials is planned. This session will be done in subgroups that will create ideas for material reconnecting tactics. Therefore,

  • we will create spaces for playing with the materials where we simulate dislocation (e.g., being in two separate rooms / locations)
  • we (and the participants) bring along materials to play with, such as: balloons, wooden construction kits, ropes, etc. to build “material tactics for (re-) connection” via physical movements, pneumatic mechanisms, electronics, …
  • we prepare several questions to guide this exploration, such as:
  • What role does synchronicity / asynchronicity play?
  • What actions can be created, what practices can be supported, what is felt / experienced?
  • How immediate are actions and reactions?

After this exploration session the groups meet again to discuss the explored concepts and qualities and to map them on the previously established landscape. Finally, the workshop will close by discussing how to proceed in terms of (a) underexplored research areas, (b) new design directions, and (c) dissemination of workshop results.