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Human Computation Community NL

Advancing Large Scale Human-Enhanced Computation Research in ICT Science

Human Computation, i.e. the exploitation of human processing power to perform tasks that computers cannot yet perform efficiently or effectively, is a quickly emerging computational paradigm and scientific discipline. It is commonly adopted in large classes of big data-driven and machine learning-based approaches that are pertinent to a wide variety of sciences. These include many engineering sciences, e.g. geo-science, environmental science, mobility science, as well as sciences where ICT- science is enabling, e.g. health, humanities. The importance of human computation is demonstrated by its pervasive application in combination with computing machines to build systems that can scale over large amounts of data, while maintaining the quality of human understanding in the loop. Examples of applications concern large-scale data generation (e.g. crowdsourced knowledge generation in online knowledge bases), data enrichment (e.g. ground-truth creation for machine learning), and data analysis (e.g. content disambiguation in social media platform).

By studying the systematic involvement of people as first-class citizens in human-enhanced computational processes, Human Computation brings fundamental challenges both within ICT science as well as in the connection to the domain sciences. As a consequence, the theory and practice of Human Computation is developed in a rather fragmented fashion across scientific communities. Such communities quickly realized commonality of many research questions yet to be answered (e.g. quality of crowdsourced data, efficiency of human computation, understanding human behaviors in a human computation setting, etc). This shows how Human Computation is becoming a major area of computing research, that would benefit from a devoted community that brings together experts from different related fields, to capitalize on the respective excellence and boost the development of this strategic discipline. Attempts to join forces and create a cross-disciplinary community have recently emerged in the United States, while Europe, despite being at center stage w.r.t. scientific excellence, is clearly lagging behind.

The Netherlands is a country hosting a great deal of top-tier Human Computation scientists. It is therefore a natural environment for a new Human Computation community to form and prosper. The HCOMP Netherlands project will facilitate and foster the creation of such community, while accelerating the state of the art in Human Computation in the Netherlands and thus advance this part of ICT-science and the young talents involved.

Connected to this initiative are representatives from major technology partners in Human Computation (e.g. IBM) and major domain sciences, included but not limited to Information Retrieval, Web Data Management, Human Computer Interaction, Software Engineering, Data Mining, GeoInformatics, and Industrial Design.

People involved

Dr. A. Bozzon, assistant professor, Web Information Systems, TU Delft ( , +31152786346)
Prof.dr. L.M. Aroyo, professor, Web & Media, VU G.J. Houben, professor, Web Information Systems, TUD
Dr. N. Kerle, adjunct professor, Geoinformatics, UT
Dr. A. Serebrenik, associate professor, Model Driven Software Engineering W&I, TU/e
Dr. V. Khan, assistant professor, Industrial Design, TU/e A. Overeem, Research Scientist, KNMI & Department of Environmental Sciences, WUR