Elizabeth Ellsworth | The New School for Public Engagement
  • Faculty

    Elizabeth Ellsworth


    • PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Communication Arts/ Film Studies 
    • MA, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Communication

    Ellsworth, Elizabeth IMG

    Professor, Media Studies. Research and teaching areas include theories of change and social change; new materialisms and media practice; documentary media forms and public pedagogies. Her scholarship addresses how media design creates possibilities for people to construct, share, and assess diverse ways of knowing and acting within the emergent material realities of contemporary life.

    She is author of Places of Learning: Media, Architecture, Pedagogy (Routledge, 2004) and Teaching Positions: Difference, Pedagogy and the Power of Address (Teachers College Press, 1997), and Making the Geologic Now: Responses to Material Conditions of Contemporary Life, co-edited with Jamie Kruse (Punctum Books, Fall 2012).

    Her recent journal articles focus on projects that fuse learning with aesthetic experience and public pedagogy. Elizabeth translates results of her research and writing into media forms, exhibitions, and projects. Since 2000, she has co-designed web-based media and content for a number of interdisciplinary online learning environments, including ExtremeMediaStudies.org. She has served as a consultant on pedagogical design for museums and design schools.

    Elizabeth is co-founder, with Jamie Kruse, of a nonprofit media arts collaboration: smudge studio (www.smudgestudio.org). Their recent and upcoming collaborative media production projects include: Repository: A Typological Guide to America's Ephemeral Nuclear Infrastructure (2012), Geologic City: A Field Guide to the GeoArchitecture of New York (2011), The Anthropocene Islands, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Germany, January 2013.

    In her recent role as Associate Provost for Curriculum and Learning (2009-2011), her work focused on cross-divisional and university-wide programs, with particular emphasis on new pathways and opportunities to both broaden and strengthen the academic experience through innovative ways of learning.

    Courses Taught

    • Media and Configurations of Knowledge
    • Hybrid Media Practices
    • Media Design and Use: Engaging Problems
    • Documentary as Social Practice
    • Extreme Media Studies
    • Emerging Media & Documentary Studies
    • Between Media & Architecture
    • Integrated Media Theory & Design
    • Media Space/Public Space
    • Mediated Learning Environments
    • Research Methods/Media Studies

    Recent Publications

    • Making the Geologic Now: Responses to Material Conditions of Contemporary Life; www.geologicnow.com
    • Wicked Problems, Novel Modes of Behavior, and the Power of Pedagogical Design, Invited Colloquium presented at the Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, NM, June, 2011.
    • Touring the Nevada Test Site: Crossed Sensations and Perceptions, with Jamie Kruse, in Public Pedagogy: Education and Learning Beyond Schooling, Routledge, 2009.
    • Shelters of Exposure: Giving Form to Interdisciplinary Exchange, with Jamie Kruse, in Chris Drury: Mushrooms | Clouds, University of Chicago Press, 2009.
    • Spatial Theories of Education: Policy and Geography Matters, Book Review, Teachers College Record, June, 2008.
    • Becoming Human I Artist: Moving in Accord with the Change that Makes the World, with Kruse, J., submitted to Performance Paradigm #4, 2008.
    • Limit Cases with Kruse, J., Polar Inertia Journal, Issue #29, August, 2007: http://www.polarinertia.com/aug07/limit01.htm

    Research Interests

    • Theories of change and media-based pragmatic action
    • New materialisms and media practice
    • Media and public engagement
    • Emerging documentary practices
    • Mediated learning environments
    • Design of innovative media-based learning environments

    Professional Affiliations

    • American Studies Association
    • American Educational Research Association
    • Society for Cinema and Media Studies

    Recent Presentations/Exhibits

    • The Anthropocene Project, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Germany, January 2013
    • Emotional Elements, Program for the Study of Women, Gender, and Sexuality, Johns Hopkins University, November 2012
    • Zuihitsu: Look Only at the Waves, University of Southern Maine, Department of Art and Galleries, October 2012
    • Repository: A Typological Guide to America's Ephemeral Nuclear Infrastructure, launch party and presentation, Proteus Gowanus, Brooklyn, NY June 2012
    • Landscape Journeys research project (based in Reykjavik, Iceland), a project of the Institute for Urbanism and Landscape, Oslo School of Architecture and Design, supported by the Norwegian Research Council, May 2012
    • “Streaming Landscapes,” Landscapes of Energy Conference, Oslo School of Architecture and Design, May 2012
    • “Amulets for Infrastructure,” Kyoto University of Art and Design, April 2012

    Awards and Honors

    • Research Council of Norway, 2013-15
 Guest Researchers
 Granted for Future North
Project manager: Janike Kampevold Larsen, Oslo School of Architecture and Design
    • Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, 2012: Research and Development Category
    • New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), Architecture Planning and Design Program 2012
    • Provost's Faculty Development Grant (with Shannon Mattern), in support of Project Media Space][Public Space, a cross-divisional, interdisciplinary curriculum project.
    • Provost's Faculty Development,submitted with Kit Laybourne, in support for an innovative online learning environment:  www.ExtremeMediaStudies.org.
    • Named the John and Rosa Sachs Distinguished Lecturer, Teachers College, Columbia University.
    • Invited Keynote Speaker, Prairie Learning Center Teacher's Institute, Val Marie, SK (Canada), October.
    • Invited lecturer in residence, Educational Leadership Academy, Massachusetts College for the Liberal Arts.
    • Invited Noted Scholar, Centre for Cross-Faculty Inquiry. The University of British Columbia, Vancouver.