About me

I am an Associate Professor in the School of Computer Science and Statistics, at Trinity College, Dublin, and a Fellow of the College. I have led a number of research projects in the area of Human Computer Interaction, with a focus on the issues surrounding design within specific application areas. Application areas we have worked in include mental healthcare, healthcare, translation, and manufacturing. We have looked at a range of technologies, including games, mobile devices, visualization and speech and language technologies. This work has involved collaboration with researchers in Intel, Microsoft Research, IBM Research, University of Newcastle, University of Cambridge, Cornell University, University of Minho (Portugal), and Imperial College London, among others. Our work has been funded by the European Union, the European Agency, Intel, Science Foundation Ireland (through Lero and CNGL/Adapt), the HEA, Enterprise Ireland, and the Irish Research Council.

A major focus of my work over the last decade has been on the design of technologies for mental health. The aim has been to develop systems which can increase access to, increase engagement with, and assist in improving the outcomes of mental health interventions. As P.I. of the Technology Enhanced Therapy project I led the creation of the SilverCloud platform for e-health interventions, and am co-founder of SilverCloud Health, established in 2012 and now a leading worldwide provider of online mental and behavioural health interventions.

I have an interest in different approaches to the design of interactive systems, particularly for applications where standard approaches to user centred design are not applicable. This may be because access to end users is extremely constrained or where issues such as stigma are important (as with mental health applications), or it may be because systems are too complex or the work environment too large for the analyst to understand and reason about the system without conceptual tools.

Before joining the department, from the beginning of 1999 until October 2001, I was a research fellow on the European Union TMR Project TACIT (Theory and Applications of Continuous Interaction Techniques). For the first six months of the project I was working with Dr. Giorgio Faconti at Istituto CNUCE (now part of ISTI) of the Italian Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, at Pisa. Following this I was based at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire with Dr. Michael Wilson. The project involved collaboration with researchers based in a number of European locations, from Computer Science, Engineering and Psychology backgrounds, with a focus on novel and emerging technologies where interaction between user and system is of a continuous nature.

From 1995-1998 I was a research student at the Department of Computer Science, University of York . My research was conducted in the Human Computer Interaction group , under Prof. Michael Harrison. I was awarded a D.Phil. in 1998 for my thesis, entitled “A Pragmatic Approach to the Formal Specification of Interactive Systems”.

From 1991-1995 I studied at the Department of Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin , graduating with First Class Honours. While I was a student there I won a Foundation Scholarship.