Stephanie Beth Jordan (she/her)

404 Wilson Road
Communication Arts & Sciences Building, Room 424
Michigan State University
sbjordan msu edu

I am an assistant professor in the Department of Media and Information and core faculty in the Center for Gender in a Global Context at Michigan State University. I live on the Anishinaabe land of the Three Fires Confederacy of the Ojibwe, Odawa and Potawatomi people – now known as Ypsilanti, Michigan. I am a previous tech developer now current ethnographer interested in the social and ethical consequences of big data in the climate and ocean sciences with a focus on sustainability across two axes: technical (materials, maintenance, quality control, calibration) and human (labor, equity, resilience), and their co-construction. I work in direct collaboration with scientists to enact inclusive principles in the full pipeline of scientific work from problem identification, design, deployment and modeling through knowledge dissemination through principles of co-design, community engagement and participatory methods. My work operates at the intersection of environmental, design and social justice.

Often endeavors in big data in the earth sciences involve aspirations for a more equitable and accessible future through information and communication technologies. My work jointly expresses the importance of building sustainable infrastructure for the climate and ocean sciences and details the significant labor of its affiliates who grapple with vulnerabilities both social and material, often concerning intersectional inequities of race, gender, ability and class. My research starts at the scientific realities that look somewhat like science fiction and asks: how do we work with and around technology to act with care for both ourselves and the planet? What kinds of futures and whose futures are we ushering in with the development of new scientific infrastructures? How do we build and maintain infrastructures of earthly care for generations?  These questions have taken me into worlds involving the development of the largest U.S. ocean observatories, the passing of the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and radioactive baby teeth in St. Louis, a convergence of space and ocean scientists searching for life and climate answers on the icy moons around Jupiter and Saturn and most recently into the extreme conditions of remote sensing in polar and subpolar regions. My dissertation, The Instrumented Ocean: How Sensors, Satellites and Seafloor-Walking Robots Changed What It Means to Study the Sea, traces the shifting conditions of labor and life that accompany an unprecedented large-scale long term big data infrastructure development project in the ocean sciences in the U.S.

In both artistic and academic outputs, my work contributes to and draws from a diversity of fields and subfields, particularly feminist technoscience and infrastructure studies, cyberinfrastructure and eScience, collaboration and computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW), human-computer interaction (HCI), queer studies, critical race studies, science & technology studies (STS), and science policy. I am a founding board member of the Labor Tech Research Network. I currently serve as the Workshops Chair for CHI 2022. At MSU, I contribute to multiple efforts for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) on campus and organize the Queerpocene Ecofeminist Research Group. For more information please click further in the menu bar above or see my CV.

Current Students

  • Janine Sakiko Slaker (Ph.D., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Megan Louise Knittel (Ph.D., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Caitlin Geier (Ph.D., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Robyn Adams (Ph.D., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Jhovonne Fernandez (M.A., Michigan State University Information and Media)

Graduated Students

  • Sarah Kilbreath (M.A., Michigan State University Health & Risk Communication)
  • Johna Winters (MS, Oregon State University Marine Resource Management)
  • Chris Fennell (Ph.D., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Kaleigh Wiseley (M.A., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Ziyuan Zhang (M.A., Michigan State University Information and Media)
  • Jiangshan Xi (M.A., Michigan State University Information and Media)

Courses Taught

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