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Full Name: 
Melissa Densmore
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Melissa Densmore is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Computer Science at UCT and Acting Director of the Centre. Prior to joining UCT in August 2014, she completed a postdoc at Microsoft Research in Bangalore, India as part of the Technology for Emerging Markets group, where she conducted a trial comparing the effectiveness of community health workers using interactive mobile health education materials to health workers using paper flipbooks. Other work includes a delay-tolerant tele-consultation system for doctors in Ghana and contributions to infrastructure enabling village health centres to consult with doctors at the Aravind Eye Hospitals.

Research Project / Interests: 

Her research interests include human computer interaction for development (HCI4D), mobile health, and last-mile networking. Recipient of the 2008 Yamashita Foundations for Change Prize, she has been doing ethnographic fieldwork, systems design, and deployments in Ghana, India, Mexico, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and now South Africa since 2004. Melissa completed her PhD at University of California, Berkeley in Information Management and Systems, a 3 year ethnographic study of the use of Internet and mobile technologies by health practitioners and NGO staff in a health financing program in Uganda, has an MSc in Data Communications, Networks and Distributed Systems from University College London, and holds a BA in Computer Science from Cornell University.

Telecommunications for Development