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Eric P. S. Baumer

I study the complex interconnections between technology design and its societal effects. What role does technology play in mediating communication and social interaction? What roles could it play, should it play, or should it not play?

These questions pose difficult technical and conceptual challenges. We cannot fully understand the societal ramifications of computational and information technologies without examining the technical components of their design. Conversely, we cannot adequately design or implement such technologies without a thorough understanding of their human and social dimensions.

Thus, my research applies a deeply interdisciplinary synthesis across computer science and social science, simultaneously drawing on and contributing to both. I integrate techniques from quantitative, qualitative, technical, and design-oriented research to surface, or even to challenge, technology’s own political commitments and social effects.

This work is motivated by three complementary interests. First, I study everyday beliefs about how we should use, or at times not use, social media. Second, I design and implement computational tools to enable new ways of understanding natural language communication. Third, I explore how computational tools can support people in reflecting on the deeper implications of data.

By studying and designing novel configurations of social and computational systems, my research contributes concepts and tools essential for understanding, and for creating, the future of social technology.

Recent Posts

Paper in Social Media + Society with Press Coverage

Last week, my co-authors and I had a paper appear on factors that influence how likely someone who leaves Facebook is to return to site. The paper was published in the stellar new journal Social Media + Society. The term “stellar” is deliberate, as the journal’s editorial board basically reads like an all-star list of social media researchers.

Well, the paper has now been covered in a few media outlets. In addition to the official Information Science press release, stories have appeared in the Huffington Post, the International Business Times, IT News, and DNA India. I also was interviewed by local Ithaca radio station WHCU and Rochester TV station WHAM, and the latter interview is online.

It’s nice to see so much interest in the work, especially since I’ll be publishing lots more on this topic in the near future.

Update (12/23): More coverage in the Huffington Post, in NY Daily News, and in Daily Mail UK.

  1. Special Issue on Technology Non-use in First Monday Comments Off
  2. Paper in Critical Computing Comments Off
  3. FrameCheck Press Coverage Comments Off
  4. CHI 2015 Conference Report Comments Off
  5. interactions Article on Non-use Comments Off
  6. Two CHI Submissions Accepted Comments Off
  7. DIS Paper Comments Off
  8. JITP Article Out Comments Off
  9. Workshop on Technology Non-use at CHI 2014 Comments Off