SIGCHI sponsors students to attend Turing Award Celebration

SIGCHI sponsors students to attend Turing Award Celebration

SIGCHI sponsors 13 students from around the world to attend the ACM 50 Years of the A.M. Turing Award Celebration

ACM awarded the first A.M. Turing Award fifty years ago to Alan Perlis for his work on advanced programming techniques and compiler construction. This June 23-24 ACM will celebrate 50 years of the Award with an event in San Francisco. Named for the computing pioneer Alan Turing, this award recognizes major contributions of lasting importance in the computing field.  In total, 64 men and women from around the world have received the Turing Award, the highest honour in the field of computing.

At the Turing Award Celebration ACM Turing laureates will join other ACM award recipients and experts in moderated panel discussions exploring how computing has evolved and where the field is headed. You can read more about the event here: https://www.acm.org/turing-award-50.

Each ACM Special Interest Group was given the opportunity to sponsor 10 students to attend and participate in this event. The SIGCHI Executive Committee created a process to advertise this opportunity, to accept applications, and to select the best students to represent SIGCHI. Applications were due by February 22, 2017. Students submitted a description of their research interests and an explanation of why they wanted to attend the Turing Celebration. As part of this, we asked applicants to highlight specific attributes and experiences that made them especially qualified to represent SIGCHI. The call for applications was widely distributed through mailing lists and social media to reach our membership.

We received 45 applications. We formed an international panel of seven SIGCHI EC members to review the applications. Each application was reviewed independently by two members of the panel, who provided a score on the thoughtfulness of the research statement, the statement of why the student wished to attend, an overall score, and comments. After this, a subcommittee of two EC members aggregated the reviews and reported back to the panel. As a result, the panel was quite impressed with the general quality of the applications so SIGCHI decided to extend our support in order to sponsor 13 students, instead of the original 10.

SIGCHI is happy to announce the list of students (in alphabetical order) we selected and will sponsor, which includes students from and studying at Universities on 6 different continents.

The Turing Award is known as the “Nobel Prize of Computing”, and the Turing Award Celebration will bring together many Turing laureates and other leaders of the field.  This makes the event a unique, inspiring, once-in-a-lifetime event for the student attendees. As SIGCHI ambassadors they represent our community, and the future of HCI research and practice. We encourage and expect them to bring their knowledge back to their home institutions and countries and inspire their colleagues there.

Please join us in wishing the SIGCHI student representatives to the ACM Turing Award Celebration well!  We will look forward to receiving experience reports back from all of them after the event.