Anja Thieme | Research Associate

Anja Thieme

Anja is a researcher on the SiDE Research Hub having previosly been a PhD student in the School of Computing Science (Culture Lab) since 2010.

Before she came to Newcastle she did a Bachelor and Master’s degree in applied cognition and media sciences at the University of Duisburg-Essen. During her studies she worked as a student assistant in the department of cognitive psychology, the department of interactive systems and interaction design, and in the department of social psychology (media and communication).

Anja’s main research area is user experience and how technological objects can become emotionally and personally meaningful to the individual. She is particularly interested in how tangible real world objects or artefacts with incorporated technology can be applied to support people's quality of life.

In her PhD she explores the role of digital technology and interaction design in supporting the wellbeing of individuals suffering from mental illness such as clinical depression, borderline personality disorder or dementia. The PhD aims to supplement existing health care practices, providing functionality that supports individuals copings with emotional distress, helping them form and maintain positive interpersonal relationships and foster a sense of self and identity, and motivating engagement in activities that make life meaningful.


Surfacing Small Worlds through Data-In-Place
Lindley SE, Thieme A, Taylor AS, Vlachokyriakos V, Regan T, Sweeney D, Computer Supported Cooperative Work: CSCW: An International Journal135-163


Challenges for Designing new Technology for Health and Wellbeing in a Complex Mental Healthcare Context
Thieme A, McCarthy J, Johnson P, Wallace J, Lindley S, Ladha K, Jackson D, Nowacka D, Rafiev A, Ladha C, Nappey T, Kipling M, Wright P, Meyer TD, Olivier P, ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 20162136-2149
Ethical Encounters in Human-Computer Interaction
Waycott J, Munteanu C, Davis H, Thieme A, Moncur W, McNaney R, Vines J, Branham S, CHI EA '16: Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems3387-3394
Syrian Refugees and Digital Health in Lebanon: Opportunities for Improving Antenatal Health
Talhouk R, Mesmar S, Thieme A, Balaam M, Olivier P, Akik C, Ghattas H, ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '16)331-342


Ethical Encounters in HCI: Research in Sensitive Settings
Waycott J, Davis H, Thieme A, Branham S, Vines J, Munteanu C, Proceedings of the 33rd Annual ACM Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI EA '15)2369-2372


HCI in the press: online public reactions to mass media portrayals of HCI research
Vines J, Thieme A, Comber R, Blythe M, Wright PC, Olivier P, CHI 2013: Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems1873-1882
Designing beyond habit: opening space for improved recycling and food waste behaviors through processes of persuasion, social influence and aversive affect
Comber R, Thieme A, Personal and Ubiquitous Computing1197-1210

Associated Projects

  • Panopticon: A Parallel Video Overview System
    Panopticon is a video surrogate system that displays multiple sub-sequences in parallel to present a rapid overview of the entire sequence to the user. A novel, precisely animated arrangement slides thumbnails to provide a consistent spatiotemporal...
    August 30, 2011
  • Spheres of Wellbeing
    The Spheres of Wellbeing are a set of artefacts specifically designed for a group of six women who live in the medium secure services of a forensic hospital in the UK. These women present a very vulnerable group due to the severity of their mental h...
    August 30, 2011
  • Tales of I
    Tales of I is a installation developed in collaboration with an adult mental health and learning disability development unit. Many residents of the unit have chronic dementia, and the room is intended to help trigger pleasant memories. Tales of I c...
    August 30, 2011
  • BinCam
    BinCam was a personal informatics system intended to raise awareness among young people about what they throw away and how they might decrease the amount of waste they create. A camera phone was attached to the inside of a bin lid and, using the phone'...
    August 30, 2011
  • Designing Technology to Support Mental Wellbeing
    Many therapies available to combat mental health problems such as clinical depression, borderline personality disorder or dementia are intended to combat negative symptoms. For this PhD, we posit that we can complement these existing healthcare practic...
    August 30, 2011
  • Lovers' Box
    The Lovers’ Box is a digital artefact designed to engage couples in reflections on their relationship. Users open their personalised wooden box with a key that they then place on an RFID reader inside to play a recorded message. This can be anything ...
    August 30, 2011
    Although the potential of digital technology to assist older people and people with cognitive and physical impairments is huge, often technology is not designed in a way that fully takes into account the needs of these groups in terms of how access...
    August 30, 2011
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