The WAIM network aims to promote disciplinary convergence in relation to work in the age of intelligent machines. The use of intelligent machines—digital technologies that feature data-driven forms of customization, learning, and autonomous action—is rapidly growing and has and will continue to impact most if not all industries and work domains. Convergence is defined by the National Science Foundation as “the deep integration of knowledge, techniques, and expertise from multiple fields to form new and expanded frameworks” (NSF 17-065). By embracing research concepts and approaches from other disciplines, researchers transform our emergent conceptual foundations and concomitant strategies in relation to the transformation of work via intelligent machines.
The conference will feature a set of panels bringing together leading researchers from diverse approaches to demonstrate the value of convergent research on work and intelligent machines. It will as well include small-group discussions bringing together authors and a mentor for discussion around work in progress papers and grant proposals. These groups will provide both feedback for developing and refining convergent ideas, as well as a place to make sense of how to navigate the world’s “new normal” as a researcher.
Attendance at the conference is free (though capacity limited). Registration details will be posted soon. We also invite submissions to present at the conference in three categories:
1) Position statements from panelists on the topic of intelligent machines and their impacts on and implications for work.
2) Work-in-progress papers for discussion that address intelligent machines and their impacts on and implications for work. We encourage participation from any disciplinary perspective, including (but not limited to) urban planning, computer science, sociology, information systems, transportation, economics, psychology, law, media studies, engineering, public policy, artificial intelligence—any perspective that can help foster convergent thinking around this increasingly important topic in our society.
To provide an outlet for work on this topic, we are planning a special issue of the journal Information, Technology & People on Work in the Age of Intelligent Machines. Authors interested in submitting to the special issue will be able to present paper concepts and receive feedback from the special issue editors and other authors. Authors may wish to consult the list of research questions developed by WAIM researchers in earlier rounds of workshops: https://waim.network/RQs,
3) Grant proposals under development, for instance, those intended for the NSF Future of Work at the Human-Technology Frontier program. Proposals might be in a nascent stage, where feedback is sought about the future workers, future work and/or future technologies to be studied, appropriate research methods or settings, relevant theoretical frameworks or potential research partners and collaborators.
Submissions will be evaluated on a revolving basis. Submit at easychair.org/conferences/?conf=waim22 before 15 April 2022 for best consideration.
Travel funding (domestic airfare, ground transportation and hotel) will be provided for selected participants, with a particular focus on supporting doctoral students and earlier career researchers. Please indicate when submitting if you want to be considered for support.