This doctoral thesis is a labour of love and would not have been possible without the continued kindness and support from loving people around me. My dear Khala Shobeen and her children Muni Baji, Iffi Bhai, and Hubi Baji, without you I could not have come this far. The constant reminder that I need to do this for the memory of my Mother, the many boxes of home-cooked meals I’d take back from you, and the love and support you all offered is unparalleled. Muni Baji for all the support you gave in this time, prior, and future, thank you. Among you, your siblings, and children, I always know I am with family. A special thank you to my niece Safa for reminding me of the playful side of life every day, and believing I go to Monsters University!

This doctorate was a dream my mother had for me and sadly could not see in her life. It has been her memory and the endless fountains of love she had for us children that kept me going throughout. I would like to thank my brother Fahd for his continual reminder that if our parents were alive today, they would be brighter than the sun knowing I’m fulfilling their dreams. A thank you to my brother Mohammad for instilling in me a thirst for knowledge and the truth at an early age; someday in the future, we will meet again. To my parents, I dedicate this work and all (if any) success that may be in store for me.

Among the many whom I would like to thank for their support is my supervisor Professor Paul Coulton. His enthusiasm and playfulness with the many ideas that came about during my time at Lancaster perhaps affected me the most in accepting my playful design side. If it weren’t for my close friend and batch fellow Dr David Perez, I might never have approached Paul with the intentions of doing a PhD, and without Dr Joseph Lindley pushing me further in each speculative endeavour I discussed with him many of the ideas in this thesis would have felt half-baked. I feel lucky to have been part of Lancaster with a team as diverse and welcoming as with you all. Particularly for having been under your supervision Paul, it was memorable and enlightening! Thank you all for allowing me this opportunity of fulfilling my mother’s dream. Lancaster will forever hold a place in my heart.

I’d like to thank my friends from Pakistan for their constant support during this time away and before. I won’t be naming you all for there are too many to name, but you know who you are!

Lastly, I would like to thank my lovely wife Risham and her family for bearing with me during this time and others. Her presence has brought new meaning to my life. With you Risham not only do I have a loving companion, but I forever have a board game partner as well. By the way, no matter what you say Risham I know you cheat at Harbour, no one can be that good!