Peter Thomas

Liverpool School of Art and Design

Pete is the programme leader for Graphic Design and Illustration at Liverpool School of Art. A designer, researcher and artist, his work is characterised by insight, clarity, and simplicity. He has exhibited and presented in institutions around the world including The Barbican, The Design Museum, The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, SXSW, La Triennale di Milano, Ventura Lambrate and The Victoria and Albert Museum.

Prior to his current role he co-founded the design consultancy Uniform and in the creative studio Tom Pigeon. He has taught in arts institutions across the UK and has served on the board of Craft Scotland and Creative Dundee. His recent projects have invited people to share their thoughts, feelings and hopes for the future and he believes passionately in the value of creativity as an agent for positive change.

Academic appointments

Programme Leader Graphic Design & Illustration, Graphic Design & Illustration, Liverpool John Moores University, 2021 - present

Journal article

Thomas P, Spruce J, Moriarty S. 2021. From Sharing Screens to Sharing Spaces Design and Technology Education: An International Journal, 26 :96-111 Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Books (authored)

Clarke L, George B, Raj R, Rogers J, Singh N, Skelly M, Thomas P. 2021. Learning to speak to an elephant and other stories of decentralised digital futures. Thomas P, Rogers J, George B. University of Dundee Author Url Public Url

Clarke L, George B, Raj R, Rogers J, Singh N, Skelly M, Thomas P. 2021. Learning to speak to an elephant and other stories of decentralised digital futures. Thomas P, Rogers J, George B. University of Dundee Author Url Public Url

Favis MC. 2019. Designs of Our Time Beazley Designs of the Year 9781872005386

Dundee UO. 2019. Dundee by Designers 2019 UNESCO City of Design Dundee 9780993328619 Publisher Url

Rogers J, Thomas P, Thorne M. 2017. DING: A Magazine About The Internet And Things Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design

Internet publication

Thomas P, Rogers J, Clarke L, Skelly M, Raj R, George B, Singh N. 2021. Decentralising Digital Author Url

Conference publication

Taylor N, Rogers J, Clarke L, Skelly M, Wallace J, Thomas P, George B, Raj R, Shorter M, Thorne M. 2021. Prototyping Things: Reflecting on Unreported Objects of Design Research for IoT PROCEEDINGS OF THE 2021 ACM DESIGNING INTERACTIVE SYSTEMS CONFERENCE (DIS 2021), ACM Designing Interactive Systems Conference (DIS) :1807-1816 DOI Author Url Publisher Url

Rogers J, Clarke L, Skelly M, Taylor N, Thomas P, Thorne M, Larsen S, Odrozek K, Kloiber J, Bihr P, Jain A, Arden J, von Grafenstein M. 2019. Our Friends Electric: Reflections on Advocacy and Design Research for the Voice Enabled Internet CHI 2019 - Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, :1-12 DOI Publisher Url

Wallace J, Rogers J, Shorter M, Thomas P, Skelly M, Cook R. 2018. The Self-Reflector: Design, IoT and the high street CHI ’18 Proceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, 2018-April :1-12 DOI Author Url Publisher Url

Rogers J, Skelly M, Clarke L, Thomas P, Taylor N. 2017. Our Friends Electric DOI Author Url Publisher Url

Evans M, Thomas P. 2011. Products that tell stories: The use of semantics in the development and understanding of future products DS 69: Proceedings of E and PDE 2011, the 13th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education, :678-683

Thomas P. DesignIntorno: The 2022 National Conference of the Società Italiana di Design DesignIntorno: The 2022 National Conference of the Società Italiana di Design Author Url


Rogers J, Skelly M, Clarke L, Taylor N, Thomas P. 2020. Our Friends Electric: Exploring alternative narratives for voice assistants

Thomas P, Skelly M. 2018. HappyHere

Rogers J, Skelly M, Thomas P, Clarke L, Taylor N. 2017. Provocative Voice Prototypes


Thomas P. 2018. Trustable Technology Trustmark Author Url Publisher Url


Thomas P. 2018. Design Learnings from Decentralized Approaches George B. Future of Human Ecologies. Quicksand. India Author Url Publisher Url

Thomas P. 2017. Our silent Monitors Dundee Design Festival 2017 UNESCO City of Design Dundee. Dundee, Scotland Author Url Publisher Url

Thomas P, Stevenson Keating P. 2014. The Making of Weather Systems Open Collaborative Making A Digital Perspective Zebra Press 9780957686816

Scholarly edition

Rogers J, Clarke L, Thomas P, Taylor N, Skelly M. 2017. Prototyping a Voice Enabled Internet: a practitioner’s guide


Rogers J, Shorter M, Thomas P, Caccavale E, Mitri S. Apple Karts

Thomas P, Skelly M. Our Silent Monitors Author Url Publisher Url

Thomas P, Skelly M. HappyHere: Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Publisher Url

Thomas P. Approaching Air Publisher Url

Thomas P. Femera Futura

Thomas P. Isolation Nation

Media Coverage:

Purpose and Education. Interview with Creative Review 2023

Decentralising Digital Research Project featured in Branch Magazine. Branch is an online magazine written by and for people who dream of a sustainable and just internet for all. 2021

AI and Local Knowledge 2021

How AI and other radical technologies can enhance areas like rural India, by strengthening local knowledge. 2020

Design Rwanda - Overview of a one-day symposium organised to establish the opportunities for design and design education to support economic and social development in Rwanda. 2019

Break the Digital Monoculture

Other invited event:

Learning Sessions at Quicksand., Organised by Quicksand. Bangalore, India., Presentation of projects and practice.. 2023

Decentralising Digital / CITAPP Seminar Series, IIIT Bangalore, CITAPP at IIIT Bangalore is an interdisciplinary research and advocacy centre that focuses on the policy challenges and the organizational demands made by technological innovation. The Centre seeks to provide a means to nurture and transform public policy around the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in engagement with academia and researchers, policy planners, political leaders and community representatives, technology vendors, public officials and civil society organisations). In this presentation the Decentralising Digital team explained their approach to Designing for Hopeful Futures. 2022

Riding the New Wave: Opportunities for innovation in Design Studio Pedagogy., Futures of Design Education. Organised by Design Research Society., As the majority of UK HE institutions implemented a return to campus based delivery from Sept 2021 it was clear that some of the pragmatic approaches to teaching adopted through necessity over the previous two years due to covid19 restrictions held lasting value beyond crisis modes of teaching. Covid19 disrupted many established norms of design pedagogy, with the loss of the design studio as a focal point for engagement and learning on campus being a central challenge faced by many tutors. As a signature pedagogy of design education, the studio provided an environment for mediated, sticky, social and habitual exchanges in supporting students learning. However, delivering teaching through an enforced period of separation from those environments proved that through adversity can come new insights. In this discussion we will reflect upon how the disruption to our established practices revealed a new wave of opportunities to consider in the development of what we knew as the design studio.. 2022

Vikalp Varta 2.4: Decentralising Digital Futures, India / Online, Vikalp Sangam is a platform to share the best stories of viable alternatives to India's unequal and ecologically destructive development paradigm. Vikalp Varta is a series that initiates dialogue on alternatives with organisations, communities, and individuals who work towards alternative pathways of well-being, health, economy, society. Working with rural communities in Karnataka, India, Decentralising Digital is an ongoing research project seeking to co-create new narratives for decentralised digital futures. They are exploring how developments in emerging technologies might be harnessed to meaningfully support and can be built along with rural communities in India. And how the work can be adapted and used by other communities and stakeholders, in their own work in reimagining different, more sustainable futures with and for communities. They will share thoughts and stories from their 2-year research project. 2021

Conference organisation:

Politics & Design, Co-organiser / Chair, 2022

Design Rwanda, Co-organiser / Panel Member. 2019