Listening to save wildlife: Lessons learnt from use of acoustic technology by a species recovery team

Jessica L. Oliver, Margot Brereton, David Watson, Paul Roe

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


An increasing variety of technologies are being developed to support conservation of endangered wildlife; however, comparatively little attention has been devoted to their design. We undertook three years of ethnographic fieldwork and design research with the recovery team of an endangered Australian bird (the Eastern bristlebird) to explore the team's culture and practices, as well as their perspectives on including collection and analysis of environmental acoustic recordings into their conservation praxis. Through thematic analysis, we identified the team's collective goals, culture, conservation activities, and technology use. We found that acoustic technologies have promise for supporting conservation of furtive and vocal Eastern bristlebirds. Trialing acoustic technologies also revealed that the team had strong interest in their use. We identified knowledge gaps, time constraints, and technology aversion as barriers to be overcome with future interaction design research. We offer an initial set of practical guidelines for designing technologies to support conservation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDIS 2019
Subtitle of host publicationproceedings of the 2019 ACM designing interactive systems conference
Place of PublicationNew York, USA
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc (ACM)
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781450358507
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jun 2019
Event2019 ACM Conference on Designing Interactive Systems, DIS 2019 - Hyatt Regency Mission Bay, San Diego, United States
Duration: 23 Jun 201928 Jun 2019 (Conference website) (Conference program)


Conference2019 ACM Conference on Designing Interactive Systems, DIS 2019
Abbreviated titleContesting borders and intersections
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego
OtherThe ACM conference on Designing Interactive Systems (DIS) is the premier international and interdisciplinary conference encompassing all issues related to the design and deployment of interactive systems where designers, artists, theorists, psychologists, user experience researchers, systems engineers and many more come together to debate and shape the future of interaction systems research, design, and practice.
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