Headshot of Kristen Bowen

I am a PhD student and Rodney Fellow at UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science working with Dr. Amelia Gibson.

My primary research interests focus on the ways that social media & technology support or act as barriers to marginalized populations’ health and well-being. I employ an interdisciplinary approach to exploring how individuals search for, process, and use information (particularly in connection to socially stigmatized topics or invisible disabilities) in online spaces. I place emphasis on user research to create and adapt technologies for these populations.

Kristen’s dissertation research examines Black emerging adults’ information exchange experiences (18-25) on their mental well-being regarding sexual violence they have experienced. I am utilizing participatory design to envision what this population needs from a space created to support their mental health.

Kristen is a member of the Community Equity, Data, and Information Lab and an affiliate of the Center for Information, Technology, and Public Life. She holds a BS in the double major of Information Science & English and an MS in Library Science from UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science. However, she draws from various disciplines in her approach to research (e.g. communication, sociology, health behavior, rhetoric).