The SIGCHI Social Impact Award for 2010
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ACM SIGCHI identifies and honors leaders and shapers of the field of human-computer interaction with annual SIGCHI Awards. The Social Impact Award honors individuals who promote the application of human-computer interaction research for pressing social needs. This year the award was given to Ben Bederson and Allison Druin of the University of Maryland for their joint work in developing the International Children's Digital Library and their individual work in developing new methods that give children a voice in the development of new technologies, and for their work on electronic voting systems.
Ben Bederson is Associate Professor of Computer Science at the University of Maryland and past Director of the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory. With his collaborator, Prof. Allison Druin, he led the development of many of the key technologies designed for and by kids, including KidPad and StoryKit for iPhone. He is the Technical Project Director for the International Children's Digital Library, a multilingual free digital library of children's books, currently consisting of over 4,000 books in over 50 languages, with more than three million users from over 160 countries worldwide. He led the library's collaboration with the Government of Mongolia -- bringing access to the library in rural Mongolia. Prof. Bederson also did influential studies of the usability of electronic voting systems, which resulted in scholarly publications, reports aimed at policy makers, and books directed to the general public. This work has served to highlight the challenges in developing usable electronic voting systems and has informed decisions on voting technology adoption.
Allison Druin is Associate Professor in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland and Director of the Human-Computer Interaction Lab. Prof. Druin is a pioneer in the development of technology for children and the inclusion of children as partners in the design process. Her technology co-design methods have been reported on through scholarly publications, presentations, and books, and have become widely used throughout the CHI community. She founded the CHIKids program for the CHI Conference. This program enabled many CHI community members who were parents to participate in the conference while their children learned about CHI and contributed to the experience of the conference, e.g., by producing daily newsletters, websites, and plenary session videos. With her collaborator, Prof. Ben Bederson, she created the International Children's Digital Library, a multilingual free digital library of children's books, currently consisting of over 4,000 books in over 50 languages, with more than three million users from over 160 countries worldwide.