Two Interactive Computing Faculty Inducted into SIGCHI Academy

For the second straight year, Georgia Tech’s School of Interactive Computing (SIC) faculty and alumni are receiving some of the highest honors from the Association of Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group in Computer-Human Interaction (ACM SIGCHI).

SIGCHI announced its annual awards on Feb. 29, which included the induction of SIC Professor and Chair Shaowen Bardzell and Associate Professor Munmun De Choudhury into the SIGCHI Academy. 

According to the SIGCHI website, the SIGCHI Academy is an honorary group of leaders in human-computer interaction. They have made substantial and innovative contributions that have made an impact in HCI and have influenced the work of others.

“I am grateful for all the people who have supported me over the years,” Bardzell said. “They deserve this honor equally. The recognition is a testament to the field of HCI’s strong values in interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research and the pursuit of computing research for societal impact.”

Bardzell co-directs the Equity and Sustainability in Computing (ESC) Lab, where she and her collaborators bring humanistic and design thinking to shape and support computing research and development. Her work has helped to advance feminist HCI, care ethics, women’s health, ecological and environmental justice, and critical computing.

De Choudhury is renowned for her work on social media impact and digital mental health. She recently served on a committee appointed by the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) to examine the impact of social media on teenagers.

“Being honored by SIGCHI with the Societal Impact Award and now an induction into the SIGCHI Academy is a remarkable acknowledgment of our collective endeavor to harness the potential of social media and computational techniques for mental health support and societal well-being,” De Choudhury said. 

“This recognition is not mine alone but belongs to the incredible network of students, colleagues, and collaborators who have journeyed with me in pioneering research that bridges the potential of technology and mental health care.”

A History of Recognition

In 2023, SIGCHI presented Bardzell and De Choudhury with its Societal Impact Award. The award recognizes mid-to-senior-level individuals applying HCI research to pressing social needs.

Azra Ismail, who completed her Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing at Georgia Tech in 2023 and is now an assistant professor at Emory University, was one of five recipients of the 2024 SIGGCHI Outstanding Dissertation award. The award recognizes exceptional HCI research by recent Ph.D. graduates. 

In addition to Bardzell, De Choudhury, and Ismail, the 2024 awards list extended to three Georgia Tech alumni. Computer science Ph.D. Alumni Gillian Hayes, Shwetak Patel, and Julie Kientz were also inducted into SIGCHI Academy.

“The School of Interactive Computing has traditionally fared very well in the SIGCHI Awards,” Bardzell said. “IC faculty members Amy Bruckman, Keith Edwards, Beki Grinter, John Stasko, Thad Starner, and Emeritus James Foley are all members of the SIGCHI Academy. IC strives to shape computing research that makes a positive impact on the world.”

SIGCHI Academy inductees and award winners will be formally recognized at the 2024 ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI) May 11-15 in Honolulu, Hawaii.

View the entire list of the 2024 award winners here.

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