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Marcus Foth <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Caitlin Zacharias <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 10 Jul 2009 06:40:40 +1000
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The deadline for submissions to the Engaging Data: First International  
Forum on the Application and Management of Personal Electronic  
Information has been extended to July 20, 2009, 5:00 p.m. EDT (New  

Please visit for further details  
on author guidelines for submissions. As a reference, our Call for  
Papers is below, in the attachment, and on our website.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * CALL FOR PAPERS * * * * * * * * * * * * *  
* *

First International Forum on the Application and Management of  
Personal Electronic Information

Hosted by
SENSEable City Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Oct. 12-13, 2009
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Cambridge, MA USA

Over the past decade, the development and use of digital networks has  
produced an increasing wealth of new data. Handheld electronics,  
locative media, telecommunications networks, and a wide assortment of  
tags and sensors are constantly collecting a rich stream of real-time  
information on various components of our lives and the environment we  
inhabit, including our movements, purchases, social interactions,  
Internet activities, and many more.

These data afford a wide range of research opportunities in the social  
and natural sciences that will create a multitude of beneficial  
information and services. Affected areas range widely and include,  
among others, workplace efficiency, traffic management, tourism,  
marketing, logistics, e-commerce, entertainment, urban and  
architectural planning, disaster response, security, environmental  
sustainability, and social interaction.

Advances in this field are progressing cautiously, however, as the  
public, commercial and social entities, and the government are only  
just beginning to understand this new condition of pervasive sensing  
and data mining as well as the associated framework required to manage  
it. Conflicting standards on privacy and fear of entering upon  
uncharted territories hinder companies, researchers, and others from  
engaging in activities that make responsible use of potentially  
sensitive data. Moreover, regulation has not kept pace with the  
changing digital infrastructure, and as a result different  
stakeholders currently face different restrictions on data usage. In  
short, we still lack a complete understanding of the societal value in  
this data and the influence on society by its use, and much still  
remains unexplored.

It is becoming imperative to develop a new framework of standards and  
best practices for collecting, storing, analyzing, reporting, sharing,  
and protecting valuable electronic data created by new technologies  
and services.

The Engaging Data: First International Forum on the Application and  
Management of Personal Electronic Information is the launching event  
of the Engaging Data Initiative, which will include a series of  
discussion panels and conferences at MIT. This initiative seeks to  
address the above issues by bringing together the main stakeholders  
from multiple disciplines, including social scientists, engineers,  
manufacturers, telecommunications service providers, Internet  
companies, credit companies and banks, privacy officers, lawyers, and  
watchdogs, and government officials.

The goal of this forum is to explore the novel applications for  
electronic data and address the risks, concerns, and consumer opinions  
associated with the use of this data. In addition, it will include  
discussions on techniques and standards for both protecting and  
extracting value from this information from several points of view:  
what techniques and standards currently exist, and what are their  
strengths and limitations? What holistic approaches to protecting and  
extracting value from data would we take if we were given a blank slate?

These issues and questions will be addressed through invited talks,  
paper presentations, and panel discussions. The forum will serve as a  
platform to exchange ideas, discuss the latest developments in this  
field, address significant issues, and create visions for the future.

The forum is seeking original contributions in the form of both  
position papers and technical papers. Of particular interest are  
papers that open new paths for research, express a creative vision for  
the future, and contribute to a lively debate.

Papers are solicited that propose principles and approaches to  
building a viable social ecosystem for using information mined from  
human interactions with digital networks.  Each paper must touch on  
the technical, security, social, legal/political, and financial  
aspects of the issue, although it is expected that papers will  
concentrate more on some aspects than on others.

Topics of interest within these aspects include, but are not limited  
to, the following:

Uses and concerns associated with data collection and mining:

1. Information mined by an endpoint party to a communication, including:
-Types of information mined from consumer devices by endpoint parties  
(e.g. VoIP routers and radio handsets)
-Accuracy and use of location analyses based on IP addresses, Internet  
traceroutes, etc.
-Sharing of mined data with third parties
-Methodologies to analyze and visualize this data

2. Collection, storage, and use of information gathered from wireless  
networks, including:
-Location-based tracking and other forms of mobile sensing
-Mobile phones, cordless phones, walkie-talkies, wireless microphones
-RFID systems
-Wi-Fi Networks
-Implications for "white spaces" signal-sensing devices
-Increased personalization of communications (i.e. device is commonly  
unique to a particular individual)
-Sharing of data with third parties

3. Collection of information on traffic flow patterns in fixed  
networks, including:
-How uses and concerns vary based on whether flows are segregated by  
endpoint, time-of-day, bandwidth usage level, application type, etc.
-Optical and non-optical networks
-Broadband networks
-Personal area networks (PAN), Local-area networks (LAN), Wide-area  
networks (WAN), etc.

4. Information collection inside the network
-Packet inspection, e.g. collection of IP addresses, HTTP cookies, etc.
-Significance of IPv6 in providing static IP addresses that may be  
specific to particular devices and/or their locations

5. Soundness of data
-Veracity, completeness, etc. of data collected from multiple  
perspectives, e.g. multiple sensors and/or points inside the network
-Algorithms and other tools to deal with incomplete, contradictory,  
and incorrect data

6. Data protection
-Effectiveness and adequacy of encryption, anonymization, aggregation,  
hashing algorithms, and level of accuracy of information at ensuring  
customer privacy
-Metadata standards and preservation formats

1. Business and incentive models/structures

Social issues associated with data collection and mining:

1. Consumers and Privacy
-Privacy concerns and countervailing interests concerning the  
authentication of electronic identities and transactions
-Consumer awareness, e.g. how common it is for people to read privacy  
-Consumer access to, control of, and awareness of information  
collected about them
-Ethical considerations and implications of data mining for both  
individuals and society
-Social norms and expectations of privacy

Legal and political issues associated with data collection and mining:

1. Standards for protecting and extracting value from data
-Strengths and limitations of existing standards
-"Blank slate," holistic approaches to protecting and extracting value  
from data
-Applicability of set standards, e.g. EC Data Protection Directive, to  
the US, developed vs. developing countries, globally

2. E-government services
-Appropriateness of permitting private entities preferential rights of  
access or redistribution of such data
-Conformity with citizen expectations and assurances of the privacy of  
such data

3. Legal and regulatory concerns
-Requirements, if any, for prior review and approval of proposed  
collection and use of data (IRB, etc.)
-Acceptable methods of obtaining consent for the use of various types  
of information
-Requirements of consent from parties related to the information, e.g.  
from only one party related to the information or from all parties  
related to the information
-Responsibilities to disclose mining of information (who must disclose  
such activities and to whom must disclosure be made, e.g. direct  
customer of service, correspondents of direct customer, etc.)
-Role of regulation in the exposure of information collected on  
network activities

4. Risk and Mitigation
-Evaluation and mitigation of risks of research, government, and  
commercial activities involving data collection and mining
-Methods of risk avoidance

Position papers must be 4-6 pages in length, technical papers 6-8  
pages in length. Papers must be written in English and follow the  
standard IEEE format (two-column, single-spaced, 10-point font, on US  
Letter size paper). Please submit papers in PDF format. Templates can  
be found under:

Each submitted paper will be peer-reviewed in a double-blind fashion.  
Please remove any mention of author names and affiliations in the  
entire submission, and if referencing previous work of the authors,  
use the third person. Papers will be evaluated according to  
originality, relevance, technical soundness, significance, and clarity.

At least one author must register for the conference to have the paper  
published in the proceedings.

The most exceptional papers in each category will be presented at the  
conference and published in the conference proceedings. All papers  
will be handled electronically and should be submitted online via  
EDAS. Please visit for further details.

Deadline for submission of full papers: July 20, 2009
Notification of acceptance: August 14, 2009
Camera-ready papers due: September 4, 2009
Early registration: September 4, 2009
Conference dates: October 12-13, 2009

General Chairs
Carlo Ratti, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Assaf Biderman, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Technical Contributions Co-Chairs
Alex (Sandy) Pentland, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
David Lazer, Harvard University

Program Committee
Ben Adida, Harvard University
Albert-László Barabási, Northeastern University
Dirk Brockmann, Northwestern University
John Clippinger, Harvard University
Alissa Cooper, Center for Democracy and Technology
Simon Davies, Privacy International
Laura DeNardis, Yale University
William Dutton, University of Oxford
Deborah Estrin, UCLA
Marcus Foth, Queensland University of Technology
Dean Gallant, Harvard University
Myron Gutmann, University of Michigan
Gary King, Harvard University
John Krumm, Microsoft Research
William Lehr, MIT
Marc Rotenberg, EPIC
Karen Sollins, MIT
Rebecca Wright, Rutgers University
Jonathan Zittrain, Harvard University

For questions regarding paper submissions, please contact Caitlin  
Zacharias: [log in to unmask]

SENSEable City Laboratory
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Suite 10-400
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139 USA
T ++1-617-2537926
F ++1-617-2588081
E [log in to unmask]

Dr Marcus Foth
Senior Research Fellow

Institute for Creative Industries and Innovation
Queensland University of Technology (CRICOS No. 00213J)
Victoria Park Rd, Brisbane QLD 4059, Australia
Phone +61 7 313 x88772 - Fax x88238 - Office K506, KG
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