Current Research Areas: disability studies; labor/work; history and culture of computing/AI; data annotation; assistive technology; accessibility; tech ethics; social movement; bureaucracy; socialism; capitalism; development; civil society in China; science and technology studies
Di’s research and practice focus on the relationship between disability, labor, and technology in contemporary China. Her dissertation project examines how disability activists in China enlist artificial intelligence (AI) for their movement in forms of data labor and “smart” technology R&D, and explains why. Her research was supported by the National Science Foundation and the Wenner-Gren Foundation, among many, and received award from the Labor Tech Research Network. She has published in IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, First Monday, and Social Media + Society. As a practitioner, Di has served as consultant for the United Nations Partnership on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNPRPD) in China, lead of UNDP China’s disability portfolio, and co-founder of a disability social enterprise.