Tuesday, May 8, 2012

HCI for Peace Workshop at CHI 2012

We had a wonderful workshop on Saturday at the CHI conference. The papers presented at the workshop included a wide range of work, from calming technologies aiming at self-awareness and self-regulation, to  the visualization of data (from detecting land mines to see patterns behind human behavior), to the gathering of data and media from individuals, with the challenges of curation, and finding common narratives that can lead to peace. We also discussed how patterns in the way people experience and share information on conflict can lead to more conflict or to peace. Themes that emerged for further discussion included the high complexity of the challenges, the importance of context and different viewpoints, and the role of design.

We also had a chance to explore issues of professional ethics, making (non-violent) conflict constructive, and tensions with the use of the word "peace". In particular, we agreed that the efforts we discussed were directed at preventing, de-escalating, recovering, and minimizing the damage from armed conflicts.

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