Maria Roussou Keynote Speaker at Cultural Heritage and New Media Conference

March 13th, 2006 - March 15th, 2006

Categories: Cultural Heritage, Education, Multimedia, Visualization, VR Art

Maria in FHW Cultural Heritage Exhibit “Shared Miletus”
Maria in FHW Cultural Heritage Exhibit “Shared Miletus”


EVL alumna, Maria Roussou (MFA, MS 1997) is among the keynote speakers at the Conference on Cultural Heritage and New Media, Hong Kong, March 13-15, 2006, co-hosted by the University of Hong Kong and the Center for New Media at UC Berkeley. The new heritage forum focuses upon the theme - Beyond verisimilitude; interpretation of cultural heritage through new media.

Over the past decade digital or new media have augmented traditional methods of cultural heritage management; computer modeling and visualization have been used to create virtual reconstructions and databases, yet there are many open issues in addressing how best to capture the complexities and essence of cultural heritage and the society that created or used the sites.

Maria Roussou is an interactive virtual reality designer, researcher, producer, and educator, engaged in combining innovative technology with education and culture. She is founder and co-director of makebelieve, an experience design and consulting company.

Previously, for four years (1998-2002) she directed the Virtual Reality Department at the Foundation of the Hellenic World (FHW), a cultural heritage institution based in Athens, Greece. At FHW she established the Department in the Fall of 1998 and was responsible for setting up the VR exhibits & infrastructure, and managing the research, design and development of the VR programs and the overall visitor experiences.

Previously, from 1993 to 1997 during her extensive work with the CAVE® at the Electronic Visualization Laboratory in Chicago, she focused on the design, application, and evaluation of virtual and digital media environments for education and the representation of cultural information. She has also collaborated with many museums, including contemporary art museums such as the Walker Art Center, to design and create interactive art education material for the Internet. Her projects and collaborations have been featured internationally, she has been a regular member of the program and organizing committees of numerous exhibitions and conferences, has lectured extensively, and has served as Expert Evaluator to the European Commission FP5 & FP6 IST Programmes. She is also on the Board of Trustees of the Institute for the Visualization of History, Massachusetts, USA, on the International Advisory Board of the Child Art Foundation, Washington DC and on the Editorial Board of the ACM Computers in Entertainment journal.

Maria teaches the New Technologies & Museums course at the interdisciplinary Master of Arts program in Museum Studies of the University of Athens. She is currently completing a PhD in VR / HCI at the University of London (UCL).