CFP: 2nd International Workshop on the Theory and Practice of Social Machines @ WWW 2014, Seoul, Korea

News Type: 
External Event

The objective of the workshop is to bring together experts of various kinds of social machines, including crowd-powered systems, social networks, and online communities, to discuss the scope of this new scientific and engineering apparatus and to present specific tools that they have designed and applied to analyze social machines and their impact.

The goal is to discuss the latest theoretical frameworks and empirical insights around Social Machines, an emerging interdisciplinary field of research investigating Web-enabled systems governed by combinations of computational and social processes. As introduced in last year's workshop, we use the term "Social Machines" to refer to socio-technical systems which leverage the Web as a medium for communication, socialization, decentralized coordination, and peer production. This theme derives from concepts introduced by Tim Berners-Lee in his influential Weaving the Web book, in which he describes the Web as an engine to "create abstract social machines - new forms of social processes that would be given to the world at large".

Unlike conventional Turing machines, their social counterparts are comprised of loose collectives of people connected by computational communication substrates at their core. By being accessible to any individual with a Web browser, such social machines have demonstrated the ability to allow groups of individuals to accomplish major goals using methods of distributed coordination and crowdsourcing at unprecedented scales. However, studying and designing such systems also requires a new and fundamentally different set of instruments, which, though inspired by the mind set of Computer Science and Engineering, naturally embraces theories, findings, and scientific methodology from a variety of other disciplines in order to understand how human and machine intelligence could be best brought together to help individuals, businesses, governments and the society as a whole in significant ways. This includes languages and models to describe their function and operation; methods that can be applied to study and predict their behavior; as well as qualitative and quantitative studies of the ways in which these systems have evolved and grown to support community appropriation and the development of the social practice.


  • 7 January 2014: Paper submission deadline
  • 4 February 2014: Acceptance notifications sent
  • 12 February 2014: Camera ready version deadline
  • 7 April 2014: Workshop day, in Seoul, Korea


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