Dr. Karmen Guevara is a Human Scientist whose expertise lies in the nexus between individuals, society and technology.
She specialises in the behavioural and psychological analysis of individuals and societies, and the interrelationships with information communication technologies. She adopts a humanistic psychological approach from which she draws her methodological frameworks and analytic models. The focus of Karmen's career has been on the study of the social and psychological impact of technologies on individuals, cultures and societies. Early in her career, she specialised in conducting in-depth evaluation studies of the impact of technology on organisations: in particular, changes in communication patterns, interactions and collaborations. In addition to participating in numerous sociocultural and psychological future technology impact studies, she has been a core team member of a number of scenario-based forecasting projects for the OECD, World Bank and the European Commission.
Karmen developed an innovative methodology called Psycognition for eliciting human strategic behaviour for the design of cognitive adaptive systems. She founded Psycognition Corporation, a Silicon Valley start-up, to develop a cognitive adaptive software system to provide interactive systems with the capability to adapt to users' behaviours.
Dr. Guevara specialises in incorporating the human dimension into the design of interactive technologies. She has provided user requirements and human interface design expertise to a number of international industry leaders in the UK and Europe on the design of innovative interactive systems.
She holds a Ph.D. in Human Sciences from Loughborough University, UK, which was sponsored by Xerox PARC; the topic was the capture of user requirements in the design of interactive systems. She was a member of the research staff at Xerox EUROPARC's Human-Computer Interaction Research Centre in Cambridge, UK.
Karmen conducted numerous studies for the UK government and the Ministry of Defence on the human-related causes attributing to breakdowns and failures in critical software systems ranging from the London ambulance disaster in 1992 to Chernobyl.
For the Ministry of Defence, she led several 'post-mortem' studies of abandoned or failed procured software intensive systems. This led to a number of projects focussed on the incorporation of human computer interaction design into the system development cycle. A programme of human interaction design courses for desk officers was implemented throughout the defence ministry and the Procurement Executive.
This work for the Ministry of Defence culminated in the development of a government policy for human computer interaction for industry.
A major investigative study was carried out in Europe and the United States for the Procurement Executive of the UK Ministry of Defence on the causes of failures in software intensive projects. The study outcome was the development of a new approach to MOD's procurement of software intensive systems. A management of change programme was disseminated throughout the different levels of the defence ministry through intensive workshops and the establishment of new policies and procedures.
In the mid-1980's, at the height of emerging office automation in the UK, Karmen was a cofounder of Beta Chi Design Ltd, a consultancy company which specialised in human-computer design, and was instrumental in raising the level of awareness and expertise of human-centred design in the UK. The company was commissioned by the Department of Trade and Industry to develop a user interface design course and to teach it throughout industry and universities in the UK. Beta Chi Design led a number of technology initiatives for the Department of Trade and Industry and the Alvey programme.
During her sabbatical in Guatemala, she successfully fundraised to establish the first technology centre of its kind for children in an indigenous village, the Open Windows Foundation. While in Guatemala, she regularly led technology foresight and strategy workshops for industry and government.
Since returning to the UK in 2014, Dr. Guevara has led a number of digital transformation user research projects for international banks and government departments. She is based in Brighton, UK.