Professor Chris Baber PhD

Professor Chris Baber

Department of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering
Chair of Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing

Contact details

(+44) (0)121 414 3965
(+44) (0)121 414 4291
School of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

 Department responsibilities: 

Director of MSc (Human-Centred Systems)

EESE Web page:

Chris Baber was Head of the School of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering in 2009-2013. His research interests concentrate on the relationship between people and the technologies that they use, particularly in terms of everyday activity. Much of this work involves the design and implementation of wearable computers and sensor-based interaction.


• PhD Human Factors of Speech Technology in 1990
• BA (Psychology / English) in 1987


Chris Baber graduated from Keele University in 1987, where he gained a BA (Hons) in Psychology and English, and then went on to join the Applied Psychology Unit at Aston University to read for his PhD. This research, sponsored by CEGB, explored the application of speech technology to Power Station control and combined studies of Human-Computer Interaction with developing speech technology. This led to subsequent projects with DERA (on multimodal speech interaction) and to work on on-body computing. He joined The University of Birmingham in 1990 to lecture on the MSc Work Design and Ergonomics programme, before moving to the School of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering in 2001. Chris’ work has been funded through EPSRC, the European Union and the Ministry of Defence, as well as several UK companies.


Ergonomics, diffusion and deployment of technology, and, methods for socio-cognitive engineering.

Teaching Programmes
• 1G1 First Year Project
• 1H2 Human Performance
• 4W User Models and Models of Human Performance
• 4Z Diffusion and Deployment of Technology

Postgraduate supervision

Current DR supervision includes:
• Manish Parekh – Sensor-based interaction with everyday objects
• Aieat Assam – Location-based photography
• Ku Ku Azir – Ambient Displays
• Dan Andrews - Narrative Design for Serious Games
• Tom Duffy – Distributed Sense-making
• Anandhi Dhukuram – Mobile Personal Health Technology
• Sashah Eftekari – Augmented Reality Mark Blythe (MPhil) – Serious Games for Military Training
• Dina Eterbi (MPhil) – Intelligent Fashion Advisor


He is particularly interested in research that extends the normal range of application of computing technologies. This includes developing sensors for capturing human activity and projected, augmented and ambient displays. He is also interested in ways in which human activity can be modelled, particularly in terms of collaboration and information sharing.

Current projects involve a large-scale European Project that explores Patient-Centric Healthcare. His team’s contribution to this work is on the integration of sensor technologies with mobile phones, and the development of a suite of user interfaces to allow different users to access data in different formats, depending on needs, experience and platform. He also works closely with the MoD, through the Human Factors Integration Defence Technology Centre, and has been exploring collaboration in large-groups. This work continues in a current project, funded through the University’s ‘Sandpit’ scheme, into social network analysis of community activity.

Other activities

• Panel Chair for EPSRC and Member of EPSRC College
• External Examiner for Loughborough University


• Baber, C., 2010, Distributed Cognition at the Crime Scene, AI & Society, 25, 423-432

• Baber, C., Smith, P., Butler, M., Cross, J. and Hunter, J., 2009, Mobile technology for crime scene examination, International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 67 (5) 464-474

• Smith, P.A., Baber, C., Hunter, J. and Butler, M., 2008, Measuring team skills in crime scene examination: exploring ad hoc teams, Ergonomic, 51 (10) 1463-1488

• Houghton, R. J., Baber, C., Cowton, M., & Stanton, N., 2008, WESTT (Workload, Error, Situational Awareness, Time and Teamwork): An analytical prototyping system for command and control. Cognition, Technology and Work, 10, 199-207

• Stanton, N.A. and Baber, C., 2008, Modelling Of Human Alarm Handling Response Times: A Case Study Of The Ladbroke Grove Rail Accident In The UK, Ergonomics, 51 (4) 423-440