I am grateful to so many people for getting Counting Feminicide to this point of development. At the MIT Press, Gita Manaktala supported this project in its earliest stages and has provided crucial editorial guidance, and Suraiya Jetha has provided editorial assistance. At PubPub, Catherine Ahearn and Allison Vanouse have supported the digital production of the book through the PubPub platform, without which the open community review would not be possible. David Lobenstine provided expert developmental editing and structural suggestions on early stages of these chapters. I want to especially acknowledge David Weinberger, editor of the Strong Ideas series at MIT Press. He is the person who originally pointed me to a Global Voices article about María Salguero's work, which led me to learning about and then writing about the global landscape of feminicide data activism.
Many colleagues have given me feedback and input as this project has taken shape over the past several years. I am deeply indebted to and so grateful for the friendship of my collaborators on Data Against Feminicide: Silvana Fumega and Helena Suárez Val. Our Zooms were a source of laughter and community during the COVID-19 shutdowns and I'm so glad to get to see them more in person now. This book simply wouldn't exist without the conversations, event organizing, writing and teaching that we have done together since 2019. This project also would not exist without the collaboration and friendship of Lauren Klein, co-author of Data Feminism. I build on and draw extensively from Data Feminism in this work. I am grateful that she has confidence that I can take our collaborative work forward in this new direction.
My colleagues at MIT Dept of Urban Studies and Planning gave me extremely helpful feedback on my book proposal at our junior faculty workshop – thank you to Jason Jackson, Andres Sevtsuk, Justin Steil, and Delia Wendel. And a special shoutout to Devin Bunten for her feedback at the workshop and then the many other times I called on her! My dear faculty mentors and friends Ethan Zuckerman and Eric Gordon also provided excellent suggestions and feedback on early stages of the book proposal. I enlisted my mother, Janet Sue, and my father, Fred, for feedback, life coaching, and moral support and they showed up more promptly than I did at all of our Zooms and boosted me when I needed it, and even when I didn’t need it. My Thursday (really early) morning writing group with Helena Suárez Val and Isadora Cruxên was an essential source of support where we could co-work in silence but also chat and digress. I also meet regularly with a wonderful, sage, grace-giving executive coach Chris Miller. He gave me feedback on drafts of the first chapters of this book and has also been an on-going source of support for navigating racial justice issues both in text and in real life.
Partners and student researchers have been at the heart of this book project and the larger Data Against Feminicide project from which it emerged. I want to thank project partners Rahul Bhargava / MediaCloud, Isadora Cruxên, Angeles Martinez Cuba and Jimena Acosta for their significant contributions to the work. Rahul is a dear friend, long-time collaborator and co-conspirator and without his contributions and the use of the MediaCloud infrastructure, the tools described in Chapter 7 would not have been possible. Angeles started as a masters student and was such an important force on the project, undertaking work across all aspects ranging from data analysis to information systemazation to literature review to project coordination to supervision of undergraduate researchers. A special thanks goes to designer Melissa Q. Teng for her beautiful collage work created for this book, as well as to Wonyoung So and Tiandra Ray for their graphic design and visualizations. Natasha Ansari, Alessandra Jungs de Almeida and Valentina Pedroza Muñoz contributed to literature review and demonstrated huge patience with inputting citations into Zotero using Google Docs (someone please fix this integration!) Other essential contributions to the Data Against Feminicide project have been made by student researchers Amelia Dogan, Soyoun Kang, Niki Karanikola, Mariel García-Montes, Rajiv Movva, Luciana Ribeiro da Silva, Wonyoung So, Harini Suresh, and Thuận Tran.
This book would not have been possible without the funding and support of multiple groups. I received crucial start-up funds, multiple internal grants, and junior leave time from the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT. This support, along with funds secured by Silvana Fumega and ILDA, underwrote the project in its early stages as it was taking shape. Some of the travel on the project has been supported by the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI). A grant from the Leventhal Center for Advanced Urbanism (LCAU) has supported student researchers and data analysis. I am grateful for a 2022 award from the National Science Foundation which has helped the project expand its focus on making contributions to human-centered computing and citizen data science (Award #2213826). And the open access edition of this work was made possible by generous funding from the MIT Libraries.
While financial support is essential, I am at the center of a caring and wonderful network of people who provided emotional, material and caregiving support to make this project possible. Innumerable thanks goes to my best friend and partner Dave, mainly for doing the dishes when I hate them so much, but also for being a source of laughter, light, and possibility even when balancing work and life feels impossible. Thanks also to my three kids, who gave me encouragement along the way, celebrated small milestones by eating fancy chocolate with me, bought me books about #SayHerName, and who are themselves starting to stand up for reproductive justice, racial justice, and gender justice. While those kids are getting bigger, someone still has to take care of them while I'm writing. Many thanks again to Dave who will always volunteer to pick up the sick kid from school or drive to some faraway sports game so that I'm able to meet a deadline or finish a thought. A huge debt of gratitude goes to María Lopez Rodas who has cared for our kids since they were toddlers and continues to do so now that the responsibilities have shifted to dressing kids for hockey and supporting their slime habits. And, last but not least, to the grandparents who are always at the ready for driving and caregiving when needed.
In short, anyone who tells you they wrote a book alone is deceiving themselves! I may have typed most of the words in this book, but so much infrastructure needs to exist for those words to be possible. I feel a deep sense of gratitude for this infrastructure, and recognize that it is a privilege to be able to do this work. To all the people in my life that made this possible, I'm sending you a ginormous abrazo for being you!