Monday, 29 September 2014

Arts-Informed Information Studies and Visual Methods

The Information School, in association with the Centre for Visual Studies, is pleased to announce two forthcoming events focusing upon arts-informed studies of information and arts-informed methods for information research.

On Tuesday 21 October a lecture on ‘An Arts-Informed Study of Information Using the Draw-and-Write Technique’ will take place at 13:00 in the ICOSS Conference Centre.  The lecture will be delivered by Dr Jenna Hartel, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Information and the University of Toronto and Visiting Scholar at the University of Sheffield Information School.   It will focus upon an arts-informed visual research project exploring the concept of information.   Graduate students participating in this project created ‘iSquare’ drawings to depict information.  The lecture will include a demonstration of the data gathering approaches which were used in the project as well as a report on iSquare research that is soon to take place in Sheffield and around the world.  All are welcome to attend this lecture.  Booking is not required and refreshments will be available from 12:30.

A workshop exploring ‘Arts-Informed Visual Methods for Information Research and Education’, delivered by Dr Jenna Hartel and Dr Andrew Cox of the Information School will take place on Thursday 23 October between 15:00 and 17:00 in Room 204 of the Information School in Regent Court.  This workshop is designed for researchers, educators, and practitioners in information science and cognate disciplines who wish to employ arts-informed visual methods for research or education.  During the workshop, Drs. Cox and Hartel will each demonstrate two arts-informed, visual techniques they have used in their work, including drawing, modelling and multimedia.  In an informal, conversational environment, all participants will be able to voice questions about arts-informed, visual approaches, and the workshop aims to a community of interest for the future. 

Booking is required for the workshop.  If you would like to attend, please book your place using our booking form.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Vis to Serve Second Term on Global Agenda Council on Social Media

Dr Farida Vis of the Information School has been asked to serve a second term on the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Social Media.  Council members include Deb Roy of MIT and Chief Media Scientist at Twitter. 

Several new members have been appointed to the Council who have a particular focus upon issues around journalism and data story telling.  Newly appointed members include:
  • Emily Bell - Professor of Professional Practice and Director, Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Columbia Journalism School
  • Mohamed Nanabhay - Former Head of Online, Al Jazeera English, now signalnoi.se
  • Claire Wardle - Senior Social Media Officer, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), formerly at Storyful, the world's first social media news agency   
  • Xavier Damman - Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Storify

Dr Vis’ current ESRC funded ‘Picturing the Social’ project was featured in the recent The Times Higher Education grant winners feature article.  This project is the world’s first academic project to explore the impact that social media images have on society. 

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Information School Represented at Mind Investors Event at Festival of the Mind

As part of the University of Sheffield’s Festival of the Mind event, Sunday 28 September will see the Mind Investors event take place in Sheffield city centre.  This event will see researchers pitch their ideas to an audience who can quiz the researchers on their proposals, make suggestions and vote for the projects which they think are most interesting, valuable and deserving of investment.

Dr Jorge Martins of the Information School will be taking part in this event and will present several projects which he is currently involved in as part of the Sheffield Crucible programme:

'If Sheffield stones could talk’ – The people of Sheffield are emotionally connected to the buildings in their city.  While some of them have been transformed or disappeared, their memory remains.  This project is developing a mobile application that allows an augmented reality experience of some the city's disappeared built heritage, enriched with the living memory of its citizens.
‘Find my migraine' – This project aims to create a smartphone app for migraineours to record daily activities and correlate those with their migraine attacks and migraine relief.  The app will send information to their GP, create graphs, and can be used to monitor and hopefully help prevent future attacks.
'Demystifying Bitcoin' – If you have ever wondered what Bitcoin is, how it works and if it is safe, this project will answer these questions.  This public information project will show the public how it works, explore the perspectives of business, regulators and consumers, and expose the pros and cons.  The impact on Sheffield businesses will be examined in the project.
'Research for the People' – While research funding ultimately comes from the public, they don’t decide how it is spent.  The vision of this project is a social enterprise that removes the middle man and lets the public set the research agenda.

'Wonder where are the Ada Lovelace and Marie Curie of our time?' - Gender bias and inequality in the workplace discourage and prevent women from reaching the top professions in science.  This project explores how mentoring practices can help reduce the impact of gender discrimination for those who take a career in science.

'Life with stroke' - The experience of living with stroke is unique to each individual stroke survivor and their family.  As a result of living with stroke, they become experts in their condition.  This project aims to understand the uniqueness of individual experiences of stroke by actively involving stroke survivors as partners in the project. 

The Mind Investors event is free to attend and all are welcome.  

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Social Media for Researchers

Yesterday, Farida Vis of the Information School gave a presentation at the first Social Media for Researchers: A Sheffield Universities Social Media Symposium (full programme details available here).

The aim of this first symposium was to encourage researchers to maximise the potential of social media, both for their research and for their careers as researchers. A wide range of topics were covered, including
 trends in social media relating to research and researchers, advice on establishing an effective online presence, the use of social media as research data, social media's role in enhancing academic conversations as well as a range of approaches (such as Altmetrics) for dissemination and measuring scholarly output.  

The symposium was organised by the Sheffield Hallam Researcher Development Programme (SHaRD) and The University of Sheffield's Research and Innovation Services (R&IS) and was aimed at research staff and post-graduate students.

Farida's talk was on 'Researching Social Media – Big Data and Social Media Analysis' and was very well received by participants. Slides of this presentation are available here. The symposium used the #shefsocmed Twitter hashtag, which was actively used throughout the day. To access and read up on this Twitter discussion, please click here

Given the success of this first symposium, the organisers are now planning to make this a regular event, which is great news!

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Story Telling at the Festival of the Mind

Professor Peter Bath of the Information School will be giving two talks at the University’s Festival of the Mind event this week, both of which will focus upon story telling. 

His talks will focus upon the Nottingham Longitudinal Study of Activity and Ageing.  His first will be included in the 'Tales from the Ivory Tower' event in the Spiegeltent in Barker's Pool on Thursday 25 September between 14:00 and 15:00.  The second talk will take place on Friday 26 September between 17:30 and 20:00 as part of the ‘Researchers’ Night Tales from the Ivory Tower’ in Krebs CafĂ©, Firth Court.  

All are welcome to attend.

Innovation in Research Award for Professor Bath

Congratulations to Professor Peter Bath of the Information School who was awarded the Faculty of Social Science’s award for Innovation in Research at the Faculty’s recent interdisciplinary research conference.

This award was presented in recognition of the innovative and multidisciplinary nature of his ESRC funded “A Shared Space and a Space for Sharing” project.  This project is being funded under the Empathy and Trust in Communicating Online (EMoTICON) call following a sand-pit organised by the ESRC in January 2014. 

The aim of the project is to develop a transdisciplinary understanding of the online sharing of personal information, emotion and resources by people experiencing extreme circumstances such as the diagnosis of a life-threatening or terminal illness, recovering from drug addiction or experiencing natural disasters.  

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Information School Project on Show at V&A

The Information School’s Raspberry Pie Weather Project will be on show at the V&A Museum’s Digital Design Weekend in London on 20 and 21 September 2014.

The event showcases contemporary digital art and design and it includes a range of interactive activities, workshops and demonstrations.  It is free to attend and open to everyone.

Paula Goodale of the Information School will be attending the event with the raspberry pi weather station which has been created alongside the AHRC-funded Secret Life of a Weather Datum research project.   She will be joined at the event by Yuwei Lin who is also a member of the Secret Life of a Weather Datum project team.  The event will allow the general public to have hands on experience in creating a raspberry pi weather station.

Information School Represented at Inaugural Faculty Research Conference

The University of Sheffield’s Faculty of Social Science hosts its inaugural inter-disciplinary Faculty research conference on 19 September 2014 with strong representation from the Information School.

Six members of the Information School are speaking at the conference, with subjects highlighting the range of leading research which is carried out in the School:

·         Alex Peng – ‘Socio-Technical Challenges in Building Future Smart Cities’
·         Barbara Sen – ‘The information coping trajectory’
·         Peter Bath – ‘Sharing information online among people with life-threatening, chronic and terminal conditions’ and ‘Experiences of a Sandpit – life before, during and after the ESRC EMoTICON sandpit’
·         Sheila Webber – ‘Is this a game?  Blended interplay of information between digital and physical worlds'
·         Andrew Cox – ‘A photo a day!  Narratives of self-help in 365 projects’
·         Stephen Pinfield – ‘Lay summaries of open-access journal articles: Engaging with the general public on medical research’



Congratulations to all Information School staff who have been accepted to speak at the conference.  

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Open Technology and Resilience

The University of Sheffield’s Festival of the Mind event takes place between 18 and 28 September 2014, bringing together academics and industry professionals to showcase their research and bring it to life.

Saturday 20 September sees the Resilient Cultures event take place as part of the Festival of the Mind.  This event explores open technology and resilience and participants can get involved in a variety of hands on activities during the event.   Two of these activities relate to Information School projects: Jo Bates’ current weather datum project and Farida Vis’ everyday growing cultures project.

The Resilient Cultures event is open to everyone and will give adults and children alike the chance to try out activities that relate to Information School research projects.  The event takes place in the University’s Firth Court building and admission is free. 

Pinfield Speaks at Open Access Scholarly Publishing Conference

The 6th Conference on Open Access Scholarly Publishing, run by the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA), takes place at the Paris Headquarters of UNESCO between 17 and 19 September 2014.

Dr Stephen Pinfield of the Information School will be speaking at the Conference on 19 September on ‘Engaging with the general public on research and the future of open access’.

The full conference programme is available on the OASPA website.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

MmIT 2014 National Conference

The annual MmIT national conference takes place in Sheffield on 11 and 12 September.  The 2014 conference focuses on sound and vision, exploring the world of video, podcasts, visualisations, augmented reality and iTunesU.

Dr Andrew Cox of the Information School is attending the event, along with a number of student volunteers from the Information School who will be helping to run the event: Sharon Wagg, Rosa Sadler, Sarah Wilson, Naomi Calhoun and Foteini Karagianni.  MSc Digital Library Management student Penny Andrews is also speaking at the event on open resources and sharing media.

Further details are available on the conference website.