The line between our physical world and virtual spaces is blurring.

Some of the hybrid spaces research cluster team sat around a table looking at a screen with code on it The Hybrid Digital Physical Spaces research cluster teams

From Pokemon Go to the Metaverse, hybrid physical-digital activities are changing the way people work, play and socialise.

BU’s Hybrid Digital Physical Space research cluster is developing a deeper understanding of human behaviour and emerging technologies in these hybrid spaces. 

The team are creating new designs and applications for these technologies, which include augmented reality and extended reality. They are also exploring how they could be used in areas such as cultural heritage and public health, among others. 

They are also addressing the ethical implications and potential risks associated with hybrid space technologies including issues of inclusivity, accessibility, privacy, safety, and governance. 

A head and shoulders image of Professor Wen Tang

Professor Wen Tang

Head of the Hybrid Physical Digital Spaces Research Cluster

These hybrid space technologies are transforming our current and future society. By understanding how people interact in such spaces, we hope to develop the best possible experiences and minimise potential risks.

Collective expertise to enhance hybrid experiences

Led by Professor of Games Technology Wen Tang, the cluster has collective expertise across computer science, arts, culture and the social sciences. 

A person wearing a VR headset pressing buttons with virtual buttons appearing on a screen behind

By understanding how people behave and interact in hybrid spaces, they hope to develop the best possible experiences while also minimising potential risks. 

Hybrid space technologies are transforming our current and future society. The cluster's research will revolutionise our ability to design new human-computer systems and infrastructure, helping us to understand what the future could look like, and enhancing human interaction in these spaces. 

Research projects