- Research Assistant
Prathima Muniyappa is a Designer, Conservator and a research assistant for the Space Enabled research group. She is a PHD candidate in the Media Arts and Sciences at the Media Lab. She is interested in addressing issues of social justice, democratic access for historically marginalized communities and enabling indigenous agency. Her research investigates alternative cosmologies and cultural ontologies for their potential to contribute to emerging discourse on techno-imaginaries in the realm of space exploration, synthetic biology and extended intelligence.
Prior to coming to MIT, she completed a Masters in Design Studies in Critical Conservation at the Graduate School of Design, Harvard under a Fulbright Scholarship. In investigating traditional indigenous knowledge, practices and folkways for conservation, her design research on Sacred groves and alternative forest practices’ assumes complete synergy between the constructed categories of ‘nature’ and ‘culture’, and leverages the philosophy of non-duality as an operational paradigm. It achieves this synergy by investigating cultural identity as an ecological manifestation.