Computer Scientist, Artist
Jonathan Zong is a researcher who uses design as a method for understanding and re-imagining sociotechnical systems. Trained as a computer scientist and visual artist, he uses design to create artifacts that empower marginalized individuals and communities, while advancing scholarly conversations about the technical and ethical aspects of building interactive systems.
In his research, Jonathan partners with blind collaborators and study participants to codesign interfaces for non-visual data exploration. These interfaces support the autonomy and agency of blind and low-vision users to conduct self-guided data analysis and help them establish common ground with sighted users with shared spatial data metaphors.
In addition to his accessible visualization work, Jonathan has designed open-source software for managing the ethics of consent in large-scale social-media research. He has also developed conceptual frameworks for designers and activists to develop strategies for refusing mass data collection by powerful actors.
As a practicing artist, his work has been exhibited at events and venues including MIT's Wiesner Gallery, the Marcel Broodthaers Society of America art gallery in New York, and the Centre National du Graphisme in Chaumont, France.
Jonathan is currently a Ph.D. candidate in human-computer interaction with the Visualization Group at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. He holds degrees from Princeton University in visual arts and computer science.