Building Bridges, Not Walls: The Interdependence of Academics and Practitioners in Human-Computer Interaction

Here are the slides and notes from my recent talk at CHI2015.  The talk, for the Lifetime Achievement in Practice Award, was entitled “Building Bridges, Not Walls:  The Interdependence of Academics and Practitioners in Human-Computer Interaction”

FINAL NOTES to send Building Bridges Not Walls – CHI 2015- DRAY

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Building Bridges: Specific Things We Can Do

In my talk at CHI 2015 in Seoul, I addressed the wall between academics and practitioners and offered both some of the reasons this wall exists and how we can build bridges instead.  Here are the slides with the specifics.

Academics can:

  • Offer practical evening or weekend classes/training aimed at practitioners
  • Sponsor Industry-wide competitions
  • Help practitioners build visibility for HCI, usability
  • Develop leadership skills and use them in collaborative leadership with practitioners
  • Write for practitioner-oriented publications showing the relevance of academic research
  • Create research institutes aimed at addressing practical and applied problems
  • Be inclusive in reaching out to practitioners
  • Publish work with practitioners in practitioner-friendly journals (JUS, BIT, IwC)

Practitioners can:

  • Find placements for interns and students in your department or company
  • Help determine research agendas by discussing what research would be relevant and useful to you
  • Teach students about world of practice
  • Seek help with “messy” problems (and listen to it!)
  • Model how to work on challenging interdisciplinary teams
  • Work to influence people outside of HCI in your company about the value of working with Academics
  • Mentor students
  • Help find corporate sponsors for academic projects
  • Work on projects together
  • Write articles together for internal publications

I will be posting my presentation here along with a link to the video of the talk.  Stay tuned!

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