Carlos Alvarez

I am doctoral researcher, designer, and communicator at Northumbria University Social Computing Lab (NorSC). I research worker-centred design approaches in the gig economy context. I am particularly interested in freelancing platforms. My expertise revolves around community engagements, visual design, serious games and simulations.

Let’s connect!

Research Interests

  • Human-computer interaction
  • Future of work
  • Gig economy
  • Freelancing platforms
  • Digital wellbeing
  • Participatory design


The Gig Economy in Times of COVID-19: Designing for Workers’ Needs. In Microsoft Research Symposium on the New Future of Work

TalkFutures: Supporting Qualitative Practices in Distributed Community Engagements. In ACM Conference on Designing Interactive Systems (DIS2020)

WhatFutures: Designing Large-Scale Engagements on WhatsApp. In CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems Proceedings (CHI 2019)


What I Learned from Humanitarian Innovation

After working as an innovation designer for the largest humanitarian network, I narrate my experiences and learnings.

Why I deleted my dating apps before 25?

A personal reflection on a journey of self-discovery and millennial young adulthood.

PhD Resources: Reflexions from Year 1

Embarking in a PhD journey can be daunting, but these resources during my first year has been an incredible asset.

Featured Projects

Designing for Gig Economy Workers in Times of Crisis

This position paper brings attention to the issues that gig economy workers experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Engaging  Volunteers Globally in Re-Imagining Humanitarian Futures

WhatFutures was an online game conducted entirely through WhatsApp. This game engaged volunteers around the world in creating a vision for 2030.

Supporting Qualitative Practices with Volunteering Communities Worldwide

This project engaged volunteers worldwide in community-led data analysis and dissemination processes.