Dr Kevin Walker


  • Dr Kevin Walker
  • Area

    School of Communication


    Head of Programme

  • Kevin Walker is a researcher, designer, writer and artist working at the boundaries of the digital and physical –specifically in curation and computation in physical spaces, grounded in cognitive and cultural theory. Author of Hackers & Slackers (2012), co-editor of Digital Technologies and the Museum Experience (2008), his background is in journalism, art and design, interactive media and social science.

  • Biography

  • Kevin Walker studied journalism and media before moving into art and design. He obtained a BA in Anthropology and Mass Communications from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1992, and then worked in radio. He gained a Masters in Interactive Telecommunication from New York University, focusing on physical computing, applying this subsequently as Senior Software Designer for Exhibitions at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

    Since then Kevin has continued to design museum exhibits and media as well as produce artworks, and work with artists to help them realise their technical ambitions. Kevin moved to London in 2003 to pursue doctoral research in Museums and Technology, completing this in 2010. Simultaneously he participated in funded research projects involving sensor networks, mobile technologies and science education. Before coming to the RCA, he served as Course Director of the MRes in Information Environments at London College of Communication, University of the Arts London, and worked as an artist.

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  • Practice

  • Kevin Walker’s artistic practice has encompassed digital minimalism, digital/physical installations, traditional drawing and painting. His LED piece Space Station was installed at Old Street underground station in 2013–14. In 2012 he held a gallery residency and exhibited work in a group exhibition, and in the Bristol Shakespeare Festival. He also worked on two theatre pieces for the Future Cemetery project, collaborating with writers to bring stories to life at Arnos Vale Cemetery.

    In his design practice, Kevin creates interactive exhibits and installations, web sites and undertakes technology consultancy. Clients have included Centre Pompidou, British Library, V&A, Zeum and Samsung. Several installations and web sites for the American Museum of Natural History won various awards.

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    Selected work

    Publications & exhibitions


    Research interests

    Kevin Walker’s research covers mobile and pervasive technologies, anthropology, cultural heritage, media, and overlaps between the arts, social and physical sciences. His PhD work on visitor-generated trails using mobile technologies was presented at various conferences and published in concise form in the 2012 Routledge Handbook on Design in Educational Computing

    External Collaborations and/or Activities

    As well as Head of the Information Experience Design programme at the RCA, Kevin Walker is a Visiting Fellow at London Knowledge Lab.

    Current and recent research

    Community data journalism

    (AHRC 2013 –14) RCA, Guardian, Changify
    This project investigates the visual storification of quantitative and qualitative data from young people and local businesses using participatory design of a community installation/intervention, linked to a mobile/online platform.

    Methodological Innovation in Digital Arts & Social Sciences (MIDAS)
    (ESRC 2013 –14) LKL, RCA, UAL, Brunel
    The project aims to map, exploit and extend  synergies between the digital arts and social sciences to develop an innovative methodological framework capable of capturing a more holistic understanding of embodiment. 

    Low Tech / High Tech
    (UAL 2013 –14) LCC, CSM, Chelsea, RCA 
    Funded community of practice between myself & other artists at London College of Communication, Chelsea College of Art and Central St Martins School of Art, around the theme in the title, resulting in exhibited work and a publication.

    (EPSRC 2013) RCA, Imperial, TfL
    Pilot project manifesting urban digital data in physical forms. This was run as a 6 week project between RCA MA students and Imperial College researchers; and a separate design intervention partly funded by Transport for London resulting in permanent installations in Old Street underground station, London.

    (AHRC/NESTA/ACE 2012) Spike Island, Lighthouse, Site Gallery, Caper, University of Warwick

    This project, funded by NESTA, Arts Council England and AHRC, aimed to bring computational thinking, agile methodology, physical computing and arts analytics to a diverse arts organisation. See the project blog here

    Designing With Intent: influencing behaviour in transitional spaces 
    (EPSRC 2011) UAL, Kings College London, MoD
    This project aimed at influencing behaviour in the transitional spaces between physical and digital.


    Research students