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PhD projects

Studying and designing technologies for rural and/or marginalised groups and nonprofits.

20142022

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Personal profile

Biography

Delvin Varghese is a Research Fellow within Action Lab in the Department of Human-Centred Computing at Monash University. His research focuses on the design of technologies for nonprofits and community organizations to support community voice and inclusion.

Often relying on co-design and participatory methods, Delvin works with government bodies and nonprofits both in Australia and overseas, to design more equitable digital processes for community development. International collaborations include work with Oxfam, Caritas Nepal, and Red Cross societies (e.g. Indonesia, Namibia, Egypt, Honduras etc.). He has conducted fieldwork and worked on projects in countries in Asia, Africa, South America, Europe and Australia.

Within Australia, he has active partnerships with nonprofits that work with marginalised communities and state government bodies such as Victoria’s Department for Premier and Cabinet (DPC) and Department for Families, Fairness and Housing (DFFH).

Some recent projects in which he plays a leadership role: 

  1. Action Grants (https://actiongrants.dev): a digital infrastructure to support emerging and inexperienced nonprofits in applying for grant funding through pro-bono support.
  2. Paroli (https://caritas.paroli.live): connecting remote communities in Nepal through ‘community radio’ shows run over teleconferencing platforms for remote learning.
  3. Designing a digital service for prison leavers (in partnership with VACRO). The first phase of this work was published at ACM DIS 2022 and won the best paper award.
  4. Action IT (https://actionit.dev): a pro-bono consultancy to support community organisations’ IT needs by leveraging university students’ skills in a sustainable manner.

He is a recognised digital community engagement practitioner and serves on various board roles, such as being an Advisory Committee member for Burnet Institute’s flagship project Victorian Online Initiative for Community Engagement (VOICE). He’s also a steering group member for the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID)’s Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Community of Practice (MEL COP).

His research has been published at the leading venues within his discipline of Human-centred computing, such as ACM CHI, ACM CSCW, ACM DIS and WWW. He was Virtual Chair for the ACM COMPASS 2020 conference and is a regular program committee member for COMPASS and reviewer for conferences such as DIS, CHI and CSCW. He’s also an HCI Track editor for COMPASS’ new journal.

Delvin’s PhD research at Newcastle University, UK (Digital Media & Community Voice Designing for Community Participation in Training and Monitoring & Evaluation) resulted in the creation of the Indaba toolkit (https://indaba.dev) for community media, a groundbreaking process for community-led video creation within international development work. Indaba is now part of the M&E toolkit of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the 192 countries in which they operate.

Research interests

Broadly speaking, I am interested in researching the design of technologies that address one or more of the following:

  • community organisations and nonprofits serving marginalised populations in Australia and in International Develoment contexts
  • Design Thinking and Participatory Approaches to addressing challenges in community engagement
  • Informal learning and Organisational Training within nonprofits with limited resources

Monash teaching commitment

FIT5136 - Software Engineering

FIT5125 - Research Methods in Information Technology

Consulting

Delvin carries out consulting and pro-bono work for nonprofits in Australia and overseas. If you are part of an NGO that is interested in engaging local communities (especially marginalised communities) through digital technologies, then get in touch at delv.in/consulting.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Research area keywords

  • International Development
  • participatory media
  • Media Studies
  • Third Sector

Network

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or