Mina Lavender

Mina Lavender

Post-Doctoral Research Assistant

Mina Lavender, Post-Doctoral Research Assistant

Dr. Mina Lavender is a Post-Doctoral Research Assistant and anthropologist interested in visual culture and vernacular photography. Her work utilizes a hybrid physical/digital ethnographic methodology, engaging with online social media practices and participant observation as a way of better understanding the communities she works with.

Her PhD thesis (Goldsmiths, University of London) focused on the circulation of digitally enhanced purikura photographs across digital platforms, where they served as a means of public display of relationship networks, as a form of social capital, and as a tool for the crafting and maintenance of friendships. Alongside her role at Design Informatics, she is also researching the long-term community impact of post-industrial urban expansion and gentrification through dedicated viewers of long-running tokusatsu (special effects) television series. By means of ‘location scouting’ and pilgrimages to filming locations, this subculture engages with five decades of changing infrastructure, architecture and the natural environment to enact their fandom across social media platforms.