GroupLens Research Team Receives CHI 2018 Paper Award

April 2, 2018

GroupLens Ph.D. students Estelle Smith, Xinyi Wang, and Raghav Karumur and faculty advisor Haiyi Zhu received an Honorable Mention Award at the ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2018), the premiere international conference on Human-Computer Interaction.

The paper, entitled “[Un]breaking News: Design Opportunities for Enhancing Collaboration in Scientific Media Production” was among the top 5% of over 2500 paper submissions. Learn more about their work at the GroupLens blog.

Smith et al’s paper provides groundwork for understanding how scientific media is produced along an information pipeline, starting at research labs and moving through communications departments and news outlets until it reaches the general public.

However, their work also highlights “faults” in this information pipeline, i.e. places where communication can break down between scientists and media professionals. These faults can cause errors by the time science news gets to the public. The work looks at how technology could make it easier for scientists to communicate with media professionals, and hopefully help to reduce errors in scientific reporting.

There are two main thrusts to the work. The first is to help scientists more easily disseminate their results to the public, and the second is to help journalists, who may lack the expertise within a given area, more easily cover dense scientific topics. Ultimately, they hope that reducing errors in science reporting will improve scientific literacy rates and help educate the public.

smith_estelle.jpgThe leading author, Estelle Smith, specializes in Human-Computer Interaction to study how socio-technical infrastructures support scientific media creation and user behavior in online health communities. Co-advised by GroupLens Professors Lana Yarosh and Haiyi Zhu, Smith’s future work will explore how these domains intersect.

Smith and her colleagues will be formally presented the award in Montreal, Canada in late April.

Please join CS&E in sending our congratulations to the GroupLens team.

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