iConference 2012 Summary




Quick Links
By the Numbers
Program Committee
Keynote Speakers

Quick Links

Location: Toronto, Canada
7 – 10 February, 2012
University of Toronto, Faculty of Information
Conference Theme: Culture • Design • Society
Printed Call for Participation: http://ischools.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/iConf12_CFP_050311.docx
Submission Template: ACM Template
Official Proceedings: http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=2132176&picked=prox

Printed Conference Brochure and Schedule: http://ischools.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/iConference2012_PrintBrochure.pdf
Doctoral Colloquium Brochure: http://ischools.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/2012_dcbookletlowrez.pdf

By The Numbers

Total participants: 486
Papers presented: 53
Posters presented: 95
Workshops presented: 9
Alternative Events presented: 16
Doctoral Colloquium Participants: 20


Early Bird (Early-November to 12/15) Regular (12/16 – 01/23) Late (from 01/24)
Standard Registration $480 CAD $530 CAD $600 CAD
Student Registration
(full-time, enrolled)
$225 CAD $275 CAD $350 CAD
One Day Only $300 CAD $300 CAD $300 CAD

2012 Organizers

Conference Chair: Jens-Erik Mai, University of Toronto

Conference Coordinator: Clark Heideger, iCaucus

Local Organizing Committee Chair: Andrew Drummond, University of Toronto

Papers Chair: Jonathan Furner, University of California, Los Angeles

Posters Chair: Paul Marty, Florida State University

Workshops Chair: Kelly Lyons, University of Toronto

Alternative Events Chair: Philippa Levy, University of Sheffield

Doctoral Colloquium Co-Chairs: Hamid R. Ekbia, Indiana University and Howard Rosenbaum, Indiana University

Keynote Speakers Chair: Brian Cantwell Smith, University of Toronto

Publication Chair: Yuri Takhteyev, University of Toronto

Early Career Colloquium Co-Chairs: Joseph Janes, University of Washington and Anita Komlodi, UMBC

Local Organizing Committee (all from University of Toronto):

2012 Program Committee

2012 Awards

The following awards were presentation at iConference 2012.

Best Paper Awards

Presented in order of paper ID number:

  • 160: Studying the Values of Hard-to-Reach Populations: Content
    Analysis of Tweets by the 21st Century Homeless
    (Jes A. Koepfler, University of Maryland, College Park;
    Kenneth R. Fleischmann, University of Maryland, College Park)
  • 195: Rural Anchor Institution Broadband Connectivity: Enablers and
    Barriers to Adoption (Lauren H. Mandel, The Florida State University; Nicole D. Alemanne, The Florida State University; Charles
    R. McClure, The Florida State University)
  • 203: Networked Cultural Heritage and Socio-Digital Inequalities: A
    Case Study in an African-American Community (Noah Lenstra, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Abdul
    Alkalimat, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
  • 245: Managing fixity and fluidity in data repositories (Morgan
    Daniels, University of Michigan; Ixchel Faniel, OCLC; Kathleen Fear, University of Michigan; Elizabeth Yakel, University of Michigan)
  • 276: Private Sector Video Surveillance in Toronto: Not Privacy
    (Andrew Clement, University of Toronto; Joseph Ferenbok, University of Toronto; Roxanna Dehghan, University of Toronto; Laura
    Kaminker, University of Toronto; Simeon Kanev, University of Toronto)

Best Poster Awards

Presented in order of poster ID number.

  • 115: Does the Use of Place Affect Learner Engagement? The Case of GeoStoryteller on the Streets of New York (Anthony Cocciolo, Pratt Institute; Debbie Rabina, Pratt Institute)
  • 380: We Are Visible: Technology-Mediated Social Participation in a Twitter Network for the Homeless (Jes A. Koepfler, University of Maryland, College Park; Derek L. Hansen, University of Maryland, College Park)
  • 412: Facets of Access: a Typology of Information Dissemination Systems (Elisabeth A. Jones , University of Washington, University of Michigan; Joseph T. Tennis, University of Washington)
  • 438: From Data to Knowledge: Developing Effective Visualizations for Finding Inefficiency in Healthcare (Conrad Ng, Dalhousie University; Anatoliy Gruzd, Dalhousie University; Calvino Cheng, Capital District Health Authority, Canada)
  • 451: Green Washing the Digital Playground: How Virtual Worlds Support Ecological Intelligence…or Do They? (Eric Meyers, University of British Columbia; Bittner Robert, University of British Columbia)

Best Poster Runners-Up

Presented in order of poster ID number:

  • 422: Removing Records Documenting Acts of Violence and Atrocities from the Archive (Emily Kozinski, McGill University; Carolyn Hank, McGill University)
  • 423: Habitat Tracker: Learning About Scientific Inquiry Through Digital Journaling in Wildlife Centers (Paul F. Marty, Nicole Alemanne, et al., The Florida State University)
  • 433: Towards a Logical Form for Descriptive Metadata Karen Wickett, University of Illinois; Allen Renear, University of Illinois)
  • 442: The DataRes Research Project on Data Management (Martin Halbert, University of North Texas; William Moen, University of North Texas; Spencer Keralis, University of North Texas)
  • 463: Will You Be My Friend?: Responses to Friendship Requests from Strangers (Sameer Patil, Indiana University)

Keynote Speakers

The following two speakers made keynote presentations at iConference 2012.

Ron Deibert

Ron Deibert is professor of Political Science, and director of the Canada Centre for Global Security Studies and the Citizen Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto. The Citizen Lab is an interdisciplinary research and development hothouse working at the intersection of the Internet, global security, and human rights. Deibert is a co-founder and a principal investigator of the OpenNet Initiative and Information Warfare Monitor projects.

Deibert was one of the founders and (former) VP of global policy and outreach for Psiphon Inc. Deibert has published numerous articles, chapters, and three books on issues related to technology, media, and world politics. He has been a consultant and advisor to governments, international organizations, and civil society on issues relating to Internet censorship, surveillance and information warfare.

Deibert presently serves on the editorial board of the journals International Political Sociology, Security Dialogue, Explorations in Media Ecology, Review of Policy Research, and Astropolitics. He is on the advisory boards of The Watson Institute for International Studies’ InfoTechWarPeace project (Brown University), Access Now, and Privacy International; he is also a member of the board of directors of Lake Ontario Waterkeeper.

Deibert was awarded the University of Toronto Outstanding Teaching Award (2002), the Northrop Frye Distinguished Teaching and Research Award (2002), and the Carolyn Tuohy Award for Public Policy (2010). He was a Ford Foundation research scholar of Information and communication technologies (2002-2004).

Deibert’s Keynote Abstract

“What was once a domain characterized by openness and the free
exchange of ideas, cyberspace is being re-shaped by technological
changes, a growing underworld of cyber crime, a burgeoning cyber
security industrial complex that feeds a cyber arms race, and an
increasingly intense geopolitical contest over the domain itself.

“Together, these driving forces are creating a kind of ‘perfect storm’
in cyberspace that threats to subvert it entirely either through
over-reaction, the imposition of heavy-handed controls, or through
partition and cantoning.

“To restore cyberspace as an open global commons will require a
multi-layered strategy, from the local to the global.

“Drawing from the research and other activities of the Citizen Lab,
Deibert discusses the ‘Coming Perfect Storm in Cyberspace’ and what
is to be done to prepare for it.”

Visit the Citizen Lab website to learn more about Deibert.

Geoffrey Nunberg

Click here to view a pdf of Nunberg’s presentation, delivered at iConference 2012 on Feb. 9, 2012.

Geoffrey Nunberg is an adjunct full professor at the School of Information at the University of California at Berkeley. His linguistics research includes work in semantics and pragmatics, text classification, and written-language structure; he also works and writes on the social and cultural implications of new technologies.

Nunberg has written scholarly books and articles on a range of topics, including semantics and pragmatics, information access, written language structure, multilingualism and language policy, and the cultural implications of digital technologies. His books include The Years of Talking Dangerously (2009), Talking Right: How Conservatives Turned Liberalism into a Tax-Raising, Latte-Drinking, Sushi-Eating, Volvo-Driving, New York Times-Reading, Body-Piercing, Hollywood-Loving, Left-Wing Freak Show (2006), Going Nucular (2004), and The Way We Talk Now (2001).

Nunberg does a recurring feature on language for National Public Radio’s “Fresh Air,” is the emeritus chair of the usage panel of the American Heritage Dictionary, and has served as an expert witness in numerous high-profile court cases, including the American Library Association’s legal challenge of the Children’s Internet Protection Act, which mandates the use of Internet filtering software in all libraries that receive the e-rate subsidy.

Until 2001, Nunberg was a principal scientist at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, working on the development of linguistic technologies.

Nunberg’s Keynote Abstract

Title: A Word Whose Time has Come: A Brief History of ‘Information.’

“It’s the name we’ve given to the age itself, to its dominant
technologies, to the economy and professions that have grown up
around them, to a basic divide between the sectors of society, to the
fundamental organizing principles of physics and biology, and
by-the-by, to a clutch of new university faculties dedicated to
congealing it all into a coherent field of study. Behind it all is
the assumption that the stuff sitting on our hard drives is the same
stuff that constitutes the basis of life, the source of our material
wealth, and the oil that ensures the healthy functioning of free
societies. Is “information” the first principle of postmodernity, or
is this all just a colossal, if handy, play on words — what William
James was getting at when he wrote, “Whenever we have made a word to
denote a certain group of phenomena, we are prone to suppose a
substantive entity existing beyond the phenomena, of which the word
shall be the name”? In this talk, I’ll briefly review just how we got
here, lexically speaking.”

Visit the UC Berkeley website to learn more about Nunberg.

2012 Sponsors

Presenting Sponsors
Microsoft Research

iConference Sponsors - Microsoft Research

National Science Foundation


Additional Sponsors

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Morgan & Claypool Publishers

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Faculty of Information, University of Toronto