Why should you attend?
Designing for improvements of people’s lives has always been at the core of HCI. Recently, as a new range of vulnerabilities have surfaced as a consequence of COVID-19, we need to understand these new conditions in order to be able to design for them. In the face of the COVID-19, people did not become vulnerable only physically due to health concerns, but also socially as an outcome of restrictions introduced in response to the pandemic. Almost all aspects of society have been impacted, dramatically changing and often challenging the ways we were used to go about our lives. The impact of these changes rises incrementally as aspects overlap; these intersections create new types of stressors and vulnerabilities.

Our workshop will hence concentrate on vulnerability of specific social groups due to various reasons, including COVID-19, and the potential for technology design to result in empowerment. We want to address issues of what new forms of vulnerabilities emerge and how we can design digital environments in a way that acknowledges vulnerability but also has the potential to empower people in ways that are meaningful for them.

In this workshop we therefore want to bring together researchers from different disciplines to develop new approaches that will help us for new forms of vulnerabilities and explore possibilities for transformation and empowerment in these turbulent times.

Important dates
Submission of position papers: 27th February 2021 [extended] [max. 2,000 words]
– Notification of acceptance: 5th March 2021
– Workshop @ CHI: 7th May 2021 // 1500 – 1900 CEST

The maximum length of a position paper is 2,000 words. The papers should follow the CHI formatting guidelines. Submissions and inquiries should be sent to the following email address: newvulnerabilities2021@gmail.com.

Concerning publication plans, we will arrange a publication of the position papers in an issue of the International Reports of Social-Informatics (IIRSI) series from the International Institute of Socio-Informatics (IISI) in Bonn, Germany. After the workshop, we plan to initiate a joint text based on the results of the workshop together with the participants who wish to participate. In addition, we plan to create a Zine that will be published on our website.

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