iSchool faculty and students will participate in the 83rd Annual Meeting of the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T), which will be held virtually from October 22-November 1. The theme of this year's conference is "Information for a Sustainable World: Addressing Society's Grand Challenges." The meeting is the premier international conference dedicated to the study of information, people, and technology in contemporary society.
A new $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) will expand FABRIC, a project to build the nation's largest cyberinfrastructure testbed, to four preeminent scientific institutions in Asia and Europe. The expansion represents an ambitious effort to accelerate scientific discovery by creating the networks needed to move vast amounts of data across oceans and time zones seamlessly and securely.
Science is fast outgrowing the capabilities of today's Internet infrastructure. To fully capitalize on big data, artificial intelligence, advanced computation and the Internet of Things requires robust, interconnected computers, storage, networks and software. Uneven progress in science cyberinfrastructure has led to bottlenecks that stymie collaboration and slow the process of discovery.
A poster coauthored by Assistant Professor Melissa Ocepek, PhD student Lo Lee, and Stephann Makri, senior lecturer at City, University of London, has been selected to receive the SIG USE Best Information Behavior Conference Poster Award at the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) Annual Meeting, which will be held virtually from October 22-November 1. The award recognizes the best poster within the scope of information behavior, "broadly defined to include how people construct, need, seek, manage, give, and use information in different contexts."
Anita Say Chan, associate professor in the iSchool and the Department of Media and Cinema Studies, will present her research at the 23rd ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing (CSCW 2020), to be held virtually on October 17-21. CSCW is the premier venue for experts from industry and academia to explore the technical, social, material, and theoretical challenges of designing technology to support collaborative work and life activities.
Doctoral candidate Noah Samuel presented research on makerspace education at FabLearn 2020, which was held virtually from October 9-11. FabLearn brings together researchers, educators, and policymakers to discuss the maker culture and share best practices in digital fabrication in education, hands-on learning, and instructional tools. The theme of this year's conference was "Making as Resistance and Resilience."
The HathiTrust Research Center (HTRC) has received a $500,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to fund a project that will develop new methods for creating and analyzing digital collections, with an emphasis on content related to historically under-resourced and marginalized textual communities. Principal investigators are based at the School of Information Sciences (iSchool) at the University of Illinois, Indiana University, and the University of Kansas.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded Assistant Professor Nigel Bosch a three-year, $987,015 grant to study potential bias in adaptive learning software through his project, "Collaborative Research: Exploring Algorithmic Fairness and Potential Bias in K-12 Mathematics Adaptive Learning." Bosch will observe and interview students using adaptive math learning software to discover what aspects of their identity are most salient in the adaptive learning context and then investigate possible algorithmic biases related to the identities that students express. Steven Ritter, founder and chief scientist at Carnegie Learning, will serve as co-principal investigator on the project, which also includes researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Illinois College of Education.
Assistant Professor Jessie Chin and PhD student Smit Desai will present their research at the 64th International Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES), a virtual event held from October 5-9. The mission of HFES is "to advance the science and practice of designing for people in systems through knowledge exchange, collaboration, and advocacy."
Assistant Professor Elizabeth Hoiem has published a paper, "The Progress of Sugar: Consumption as Complicity in Children's Books about Slavery and Manufacturing, 1790-2015," in Children's Literature in Education (CLE). In her paper, Hoiem analyzes "production stories," a genre of books and media that teaches how everyday things are made. Since they started in the eighteenth century, children's production stories have evolved from picturebooks to TV episodes and web video series. Hoiem focuses on stories of sugar production in her paper and accompanying web resource, Production Stories.
Assistant Professor Melissa Ocepek and PhD student Jamillah Gabriel will present their research at the Information Behaviour Conference (ISIC 2020), a virtual event held from September 28-October 2. This conference is devoted to information-seeking behavior and information use, focusing this year on analytical investigations of the connection between information research and information behavior and practices.
PhD student Clair Irwin will participate in the Society for Scholarly Publishing’s 2020 Virtual Seminar, New Directions in Scholarly Publishing: Community, Collaboration, and Crisis, which will be held September 30-October 1. The seminar will explore new ways for publishers and industry leaders to support peer-reviewed research and academic publishing, especially during the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.
PhD student Qiuyan Guo will present her research at the Flyover Comics Symposium, which will be held virtually on September 24-25. The symposium is organized by members of the comics studies communities at the University of Illinois, University of North Texas, and Michigan State University.
With Hurricane Sally threatening the Gulf Coast last week, people in its path may have felt reassured by the mobile apps that would provide them with weather alerts or notify first responders in case of an emergency. While the app users may have been willing to share their location with first responders, they might be surprised to learn that their location and other personal information could be shared with a third party or accessed after the hurricane had passed. Assistant Professor Madelyn Sanfilippo and fellow researchers examine the privacy practices of popular disaster apps in the paper, "Disaster Privacy/Privacy Disaster," which was the lead article in a special issue of the Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology (vol. 71, issue 9) on information privacy in the digital age.
PhD student Jack Brighton shared his expertise in audiovisual archives at the 105th Annual Meeting and Conference of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) on September 3. The theme of this year's conference, which is being held as a series of online events/webinars every Thursday and Saturday in September, is "2020—African Americans and the Vote."
Associate Professor Masooda Bashir has received a $150,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS LG-246404-OLS-20) for her project, "Securing our Public Libraries: A Forum on Privacy and Security." The project seeks to identify the existence and absence of privacy protecting technologies (software and/or hardware) in public library systems.
The National Artificial Intelligence Research Institutes program awarded $20 million to the Center for Digital Agriculture at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) for the new Artificial Intelligence for Future Agricultural Resilience, Management, and Sustainability (AIFARMS) Institute. The program, a joint effort between the National Science Foundation (NSF) and U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture was created in response to the White House's 2019 update to the National Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan, which aims to provide support for AI research that focuses on impacting and improving society. iSchool Associate Professor Jingrui He is one of the researchers involved in the AIFARMS Institute.
Since COVID-19 began its menacing march across Wuhan, China, in December 2019, and then across the world, the SARS-CoV-2 virus has taken a "whatever works" strategy to ensure its replication and spread. But in a new study undergoing peer review, University of Illinois researchers and students show the virus is honing the tactics that may make it more successful and more stable.
Members of Associate Professor Jingrui He's research group, the iSAIL Lab, will present their research at the 26th SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (KDD2020), which will be held virtually August 22-27. The conference, hosted by the Association for Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (SIGKDD), is the premier international forum for data mining researchers and practitioners from academia, industry, and government to share ideas, research, and experiences.