Emerging Interfaces Award: Square Dancing to Relate

Kaitlin Rienzo-Stack, 2012 Emerging Interfaces Award recipient:

Rienzo-Stack examines whether personal interaction could increase empathy between environmental stakeholders and ultimately affect their ability to work together to create better environmental outcomes. Specifically, she looks at how square dancing, a participatory traditional American dance form, might bring together people involved with mitigating harmful algal blooms in Lake Mendota in Madison, Wis. Algal blooms are a contentious issue for Lake Mendota’s disparate users, neighbors and regulators — including limnologists, dairy farmers, environmental groups and government agencies. She presents the science and theory behind the framework for this project.