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Roland Graf’s Doctoral Thesis Receives “Award of Excellence”

Venn diagram showing Ludic Engineering as the intersection of Art, Play, Technology, and Innovation

Stamps Associate Professor Roland Graf’s recently completed doctoral thesis From Pink to Pong: Tracing a Convergence of Art and Ludic Engineering” has received the Award of Excellence” from the Federal Ministry of Education, Science, and Research of Austria.

Since 2008, the Award of Excellence” has recognized the 40 best doctoral theses in Austria of the academic year. This year’s award ceremony will take place in the Aula of Sciences in Vienna, Austria, on December 7, 2021.

In his dissertation, Graf traces a convergence of artistic and ludic (i.e., playful) engineering approaches at the intersection of interactive art and Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) in light of Solar Pink Pong, a case study that focuses on play” as the inventive element. The work is driven by the need to bridge conflicting viewpoints of this convergence and better understand the operational value of play” (i.e., playful thought and playful behavior) for inventing technologies for, and with, the lived body. As such, the dissertation provides a multifaceted answer to the questions of what serious” roles Ludic Engineering can play and how it can be further conceptualized.