The School of Information Studies is thrilled to announce that professor Radhika Garg has been awarded best paper at the annual ACM CHI Conference. 

Garg and her colleagues (Harrington, Amanda Woodward, Dimitri Williams) received this prestigious award for their paper, ‘It’s Kind of Like Code-Switching”: Black Older Adults’ Experiences with a Voice Assistant for Health Information Seeking.” Through a three-phase exploratory study, they identified several places within the healthcare space where thoughtful design interventions could greatly impact and improve the utility of health technology. In the abstract of the paper the authors state, “We contribute an understanding of cultural code-switching that has to be done by these older adults when interacting with voice assistants, and the importance of such phenomenon when designing for historically excluded groups.”

Radhika Garg

“This topic is close to my heart,” Garg explains. “Over the past five years I have worked with families, children, and elders from marginalized communities to understand and improve how they interact with voice-enabled devices.” Seeing a need for research around the issues confronting these populations, she put in the work to find some solutions, and that is how she and her team earned this award.

ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) is the largest educational and scientific computing society in the world. It helps to cultivate and deliver resources that advance computing as a science and as a profession. The ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI) is widely considered the best conference series in the field of human-computer interaction. The CHI Conference has attracted thousands of international attendees since 1982.

According to the conference website, CHI annually brings together researchers and practitioners from all over the world and from diverse cultures, backgrounds, and positionalities, who have as an overarching goal to make the world a better place with interactive digital technologies. With such a diverse concentration of top minds and contributors, it is an honor to even have a submission accepted into the conference, let alone to win the award for Best Paper. It is a highly competitive selection process to be accepted, and the papers that get reviewed for awards go through an additional rigorous scholarly review, of which only the top 1% of papers receive awards.