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Jessica Barness is an Associate Professor in the School of Visual Communication Design at Kent State University. Her research resides at the intersection of design, humanistic inquiry, and interactive technologies, investigated through a critical, practice-based approach. She is also involved in ongoing projects connecting sound studies and design. As an educator, she focuses on interdisciplinary projects that connect communication design with the areas of architecture, museum studies, entrepreneurship, and the sciences.
She has published articles in peer-reviewed journals such as Design and Culture, Visual Communication, Dialectic, Message, SEGD Research Journal: Communication + Place, and Currents in Electronic Literacy. She has been presented research nationally and internationally, at venues hosted by organizations such as SEGD, AIGA, Design History Society, FILE Electronic Language Festival, HASTAC, and the International Committee for Design History and Design Studies. Her creative work has garnered awards from entities such as Project Passion, College Book Art Association, UCDA, and the STA 100.
Jessica Barness has an MFA in Design from the University of Minnesota, and an MA and BA in Studio Art from the University of Northern Iowa. Prior to her academic career, she was a practicing designer for over a decade, working in design and research with Conway+Schulte Architects in Minneapolis, MN, and as a senior product designer and design development manager in Chicago, IL.
Jessica Barness is a member of the 2017 SEGD Academic Task Force.