RESEARCH & DESIGN
FOR PLAY & STORIES
I am a researcher and artist specialising in play and storytelling for children. Having a doctorate in Education and MA degrees in Research Methods, Early Childhood Education and Japanese Semiotics my work crosses academia and industry. I am the Co-Founder of a storytelling consultancy and studio called X||dinary Stories.
My research sits at the intersection of experimental design and social sciences, focusing on digital storytelling, games and play on a range of platforms such as apps, augmented and virtual reality, as well as new content for television, all with an emphasis on media for children.
As an artist I use drawing, emerging technologies and game engines to explore experimental visual and multimodal methods as part of the research process. In this way I take an Information Experience Design approach to including participants in the research process, also to connect data findings [the information] to design and production [the experience].
Recent Conference Presentations & Talks
Yamada-Rice, D. (2023) Storytelling in a Digital Age: how immersive entertainment can support childhood development.
Invited talk for NESTA. (23/02/23).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2023) A visionary look at how the metaverse could change research and insights practices in the near future.
Insights from the Metaverse 2023, Market Research Society. (20/01/23).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Games & Play to Engage Research Participants in Projects about Change.
Invited talk for Manchester Centre for Youth Studies, online. (26/10/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Art and Design in Protests,
Village Green Talks, MMU. (12/10/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Games & Play to Engage Research Participants in Projects about Change.
Games for Change, New York City.(13-16/07/22). Keynote.
Yamada-Rice, D. & Dare, E. (2022) Equity and the Immersive Lab: Polygon by polygon, how do we build an equitable world. Kingston University, London (22/06/22) Keynote.
Main, A. Grierson, M., Yamada-Rice, D. & Murr, J. (2022) Augmenting Personal Creativity with Artificial Intelligence.Creativity & Cognition, Venice. Full-day Workshop (20/06/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) The Art of Storytelling.
Invited talk for The Richmond Market Insight Forum, Savoy Place, London (08/06/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Re-Imagining Data Storytelling and Impact. Invited presentation for Western Cape Education Department’s Empower Hour, South Africa (20/05/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. & Dare, E. (2022) Virtual magic: sleight of hand in immersive storytelling. Connecting Screens: Playing with Immersive Systems Research Symposium, Leeds School of Art, Invited Keynote (30/03/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Designing with Children: How to Involve them in Research. Digital Kids Today, Aarhaus, Denmark, Invited Keynote (3/3/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Dismantel the Doors: approaches to interdisciplinary research and practice. Invited keynote speaker for i-Dat Visitng Lecturers and given as part of the University of Plymouth’s Professional And Creative Attributes Week (24/02/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Dismantle the Doors: an interdisciplinary approach to information and experience in the design of play and storytelling, Manchester School of Art (10/02/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Invited Keynote presentation for "What Matters in Early Childhood Studies Now? Dialogues of Pasts, Presents and Futures" Conference, Brock University (27/01/22).
Yamada-Rice, D. & Dare, E. (2021) Virtual [UN]Reality: the role of magic in immersive storytelling, Immersive Storytelling Symposium, Lakeside Arts, Nottingham (02/11/21).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2021) Invited panel presentation for 'Digital Devices Before 5' Workshop for Bradford City Council organised by University of Leeds, Invited Talk (10/05/21).
On this site you can find details of my RESEARCH & GRAPHIC NARRATIVES with links to related publications, reports, stories and games/
There is also a BLOG which documents work and ideas as they are in progress interlinked with details of finished publications.
Dare, E. & Yamada-Rice, D. (in press) Queer Psycho and the HE Circus: Applying Queering, Magic and More-than-Human Theories to Immersive Visual Story Worlds as an Antidote to Late Capitalism. Presence, MIT.
Yamada-Rice, D. et al (in press) The Importance of Multimodal Play and Storytelling to a Mixed Realities Playkit for Preparing 4 to 10-year-olds for an MRI scan. Multimodality & Society.
Main, A. & Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Evading Big Brother: using visual methods to understand children’s perception of sensors and interest in subverting digital surveillance. Visual Communication, Vol.20 (3).
Yamada-Rice, D., Thompson, J., Love, S., Thompson, S. & McQuillian,H. (2022) Mixed Realities Playkit to Prepare Children for an MRI Scan: Findings for health, families and industry. Available online at: <http://dubit.us/mri>.
Fass, J., Yamada-Rice, D., Shelley, J. , Lewis, M. & Pappas, G. (2022). Information is Ugly. Visual Communication, Vol.20 (3). Editorial.
Main, A. Grierson, M., Yamada-Rice, D. & Murr, J. (2022) Augmenting Personal Creativity with Artificial Intelligence.
C&C '22: Creativity and Cognition, June 2022 p.462- 465https://doi.org/10.1145/3527927.3531205. Published online at ACM Digital Library.
Dare, E. & Yamada-Rice, D. (2022) Reading the Cards: Critical Chatbots, Tarot and Drawing as an Epistemological Repositioning to Defend Against the Neoliberal Structures of Art Education. In: Filimowicz, M. (ed) Systematic Bias: Algorithms and Society. London: Routledge
Nash, R., Yamada-Rice, D., Dare, E., Love, S., Main, A., Potter, D., Rodrigues, D. (2021) Using a collaborative zine to co-produce knowledge about location-based virtual reality experiences. Qualitative Research Journal, Vol.21 (2).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2021) Children’s interactive storytelling in Virtual Reality, Multimodality & Society, Vol. 1 (1), p.48-67.
Ikon, E., Wee, C., Dare, E., Lewis, M., Biderman, K., Gordon, L., Pochodzaj, J., and Yamada-Rice, D, 'Exercises in Exorcism, Ways of Healing (through) Art Education'. In: Baier, W., Canepa, E., Golemis, H. (eds) (2021) Capitalism's Deadly Threat: transform! London: Merlin Press.
Yamada-Rice, D., Dare, E. Main, A., Potter, J., Ando, A. Miyoshi, K., Narumi, T., Beshani, S., Clark, A., Duszenko, I. Love, S., Nash, R., Rodrigues, D., and Stearman, N. (2020) Location-Based Virtual Reality Experiences for Children: Japan-UK Knowledge Exchange Network: Final Project Report. Available online at: <https://ukjapanvr.wordpress.com/2020/06/13/nalprojectreport/>
Yamada-Rice, D. & Love, S. (2019) Designing tech for health: Developing a mixed reality playkit to help children who need an MRI Scan. RIAS Quarterly, Vol. 38 p. 57.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2019) Including Children in the Design of the Internet of Toys: In Mascheroni, G. & Holloway, D. (Eds) The Internet of Toys: Practices, Affordances and the Political Economy of Children’s Smart play.
Yamada-Rice, D., Rodrigues, D. & Zubrycka, J. (2019) Makerspaces and Virtual Reality, Chapter 5. In: Blum-Ross, A., Kumpulainen, K. & Marsh, J.(eds) Enhancing digital Literacy and Creativity: Makerspaces in the Early Years. Routledge.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2018) Licking planets and Stomping on Buildings: children’s interactions with curated spaces in Virtual Reality. Children's Geographies, Vol.16 (5).
Yamada-Rice, D. and Marsh, J., (2018) Using Augmented and virtual Reality in the Early Childhood Curriculum. Printed Publication available online at:
Marsh, J. A., Plowman, L., Bishop, J, Lahmar, J and Scott, F, Yamada-Rice, D. (2018), Play and creativity in young children’s use of apps. British Journal of Educational Technology, Vol. 49 (4).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2018) Designing Play: young children’s play and communication practices in relation to designers’ intentions for their toy. Global Studies of Childhood, Vol.8, No.1. p. 5-22.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2017) Designing Play for Dark Times. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, Vol.18 (2). p. 196-212.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2017) Using visual and digital research methods to capture young children’s interaction with and comprehension of images. In: Christensen, P. and James, A. (2017) Research with Children: Perspectives and practice, 3rd Edition, Routledge.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2017) Designing connected play: Perspectives from combining industry and academic know-how. In: Chaudron S., Di Gioia R., Gemo M., Holloway D., Marsh J., Mascheroni G., Peter J., Yamada-Rice D. Kaleidoscope on the Internet of Toys - Safety, security,
privacy and societal insights, EUR 28397 EN, doi:10.2788/05383
Yamada-Rice, D., Mushtaq, F., Woodgate, A., Bosmans, D, Douthwaite, A, Douthwaite, I, Harris, W, Holt, R, Kleeman, D, Marsh, J, Milovidov, E, Mon Williams, M, Parry, B, Riddler, A, Robinson, P, Rodrigues, D, Thompson, S and Whitley, S, (2017), Children and Virtual Reality: Emerging Possibilities and Challenges. Available online at http://childrenvr.org.
Yamada-Rice, D. & Marsh, J. (2017) Working Together on Young Children’s Digital and Media Practics: Fostering Academic and Industry Partnerships. Published online and available for download here.
Marsh, J., Plowman, L., Yamada-Rice, D., Bishop, J. & Scott, F., (2016) Digital play: a new classication, Early Years an International Research Journal, Vol. 36 (3). p. 242-253
Marsh, J. and Yamada-Rice, D. (2016) Bringing Pudsey to Life: Young Children’s Use of Augmented Reality Apps. In: Kucirkova, N. and Falloon, G. (eds) Apps, Technology and Younger Learners. Routledge.
Nutbrown, C., Clough, P., Levy, R. Little, S., Yamada-Rice, D. Bishop, J., Lamb, T., (2016) Families’ roles in children’s literacy, Journal of Early Childhood Literacy, Vol.15. (35).
Marsh, J., Plowman, L., Yamada-Rice, D., Bishop, J.C., Lahmar, J., Scott, F., Davenport, A., Davis, S., French, K., Piras, M., Thornhill, S., Robinson, P. and Winter, P. (2015) Exploring Play and Creativity in Pre-Schoolers’ Use of Apps: Final Project Report. Available at: <www.techandplay.org>
Yamada-Rice, D. (2015) Semiotic Landscapes: Cultural
affordances of texts in and of Japanese landscapes. In: Pahl, K. & Rowsell, J. (eds) (2015) Routledge Handbook of Literacy Studies. Routledge.
Yamada-Rice, D. & Stirling, E. (2015) Visual Methods with
Children and Young People. Academics and Visual Industry in Dialogue. London: Palgrave.
Yamada-Rice, D., Procter, L., Stirling, E. & Almansour M. (2015) Review: Margolis & Pauwels (eds) (2011). The Sage Handbook of Visual Research Methods, Visual Communication, Vol. 14. (2).
Yamada-Rice, D. (2014) The Semiotic Landscape and Three-Year-Olds’ EmergingUnderstanding of Multimodal
Communication Practices, Journal of Early Childhood Research, Vol. 12, (2), p. 154-184.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2014) Using Multimodal Social Semiotic
Theory and Visual Methods to Consider Young Children’s
Interaction with and Comprehension of Images. SAGE Research Methods Cases Collection.
Levy, R., Yamada-Rice, D. and Marsh, J. (2013) Digital literacies in the primary classroom. In: Hall, K., Cremin, T., Comber, B. and Moll, L. (eds) (2013) International Handbook of Research in Children's Literacy, Learning and Culture. Wiley-Blackwell.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2011) New Media, evolving multimodal
literacy practices and the potential impact of increased use of the visual mode in the urban environment on young children’s learning. Literacy, Vol. 45, (1), p.32-43.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2011) A Comparative Study of Visuals in the Urban Landscapes of Tokyo and London, Visual Communication, Vol. 10, (2,) p.175-186.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2011) The Benefits of Sign Language in the International Preschool Curriculum. In: Murphy, E. (ed) (2011) Welcoming Linguistic Diversity in Early Childhood Classrooms. Multilingual Matters. p.112-124.
Yamada-Rice, D. (2010) Beyond words: An enquiry into
children’s home visual communication practices. Journal of
Early Childhood Literacy, Vol.10, (3), p. 341–363.