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Bryan Semaan

Bryan Semaan

Assistant Professor

338 Hinds Hall | Phone: (315) 443-5441

bsemaan@syr.edu

https://bsemaan.expressions.syr.edu/

Overview

About me

Bryan Semaan is an Assistant Professor in the School of Information Studies (iSchool) at Syracuse University (SU). Prior to joining the iSchool he was a Postdoc at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He obtained his Ph.D. in Information and Computer Science from the University of California, Irvine. His primary research areas are in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), and Science and Technology Studies (STS).

Bryan has been invited to contribute to several communities in the greater HCI domain, such as Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI), Transactions on Human-Computer Interaction (TOCHI), Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), the Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management Conference (ISCRAM), and Digital Government Society (d.Go). He has been invited to serve on several panels and give talks on topics ranging from social media use in crisis to terrorism in the Internet age. He has also received awards for his work, having most recently received a SIGCHI Best Paper Award and a SIGCHI Honorable Mention Award at the ACM CHI Conference--the premier conference on Human-Computer Interaction (More information is available here).

Research

Bryan’s research lies broadly at the intersection of the computer sciences and the social sciences. On a broad level, he is interested in understanding the ways in which technology is changing society, and the social and cultural practices surrounding technology use and design. More specifically, his research investigates Technology for the social good. That is, his research agenda is centered around: (1) examining the role of ICTs in enabling resilience amongst people immersed in challenging contexts, where he operationalizes challenging contexts as working with vulnerable, underserved, and marginalized populations (i.e. LGBTQ, veterans, refugees, new mothers), or (2) choosing domains of our social life (i.e. political interaction), through which ICTs can serve as a social good by enhancing the lives of citizens and effecting societal impact. To accomplish this goal his research draws on and expand upon theories from various disciplines, such as Gender Studies, Science and Technology Studies (STS), Feminist STS (FSTS), Organizational Sciences, Psychology, Sociology of Disaster, Trauma and Counseling, Political Science, and more. Moreover, he integrates qualitative, quantitative and computational analysis to understand the activities of populations immersed in these challenging contexts, and he employs participatory design and design science approaches to further uncover complex social processes and effects, and to identify and pursue impactful design opportunities that empower and/or improve the lives of citizens.

To learn more about specific projects, please navigate to the descriptions available on his website.

I am looking for PhD students who are interested in...

employing qualitative (interviews and observations) and quantitative (big data collection and analysis, and experimentation) methods to explore ICTs as a social good and designing new technologies to help support individuals, families and communities, in the following domains:

(1) Identity Work and Transition Resilience

In this larger project focused on transition, I am exploring how people with marginalized identities use ICTs to develop new pathways forward in their lives whereas they might be experiencing intolerance, hostility, or other issues, in their physical world environments. To that end, I am currently exploring ICT use and design opportunities amongst the following populations:

- LGBTQ populations

- veterans and and veteran families

- refugee migration and resettlement

- disadvantaged college students

- new mothers

- invisible illness such as chronic health conditions and mental health

- other transitioning populations

(2) Designing Resilient Online Communities

In this series of studies, I am exploring how to design resilient online communities--that is, online spaces that are safe, and absent ridicule and harassment. To that end, I am exploring the following problem spaces, as well as spaces being used by marginalize populations (as described above):

- toxic masculinity online (How do we reduce toxicity online, such as in video game communities, veteran communities, etc...?)

- political interactions (How do we reduce toxicity in political interactions?)

- moderation (How do moderators in online communities, such as Reddit, play a role in limiting toxicity?)

(3) Resilience Making: Exploring Bottom-Up Design Amongst Marginalized Populations

In this series of studies, I am interested in exploring how people with marginalized identities design new technologies, or re-appropriate existing technologies like Facebook groups and fanfiction communities, as a means of creating resilience for themselves or their greater communities. To that end, I am exploring these practices as a type of critical design and making:

-exploring how marginalized populations design online communities or other technologies to serve their own needs, bottom-up, and inverse to formal services and societal arrangements

Teaching

IST 343: Data in Society

IST 449: Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)

IST 649: Human Interaction with Computers

IST 830: Theories of (digital) technologies

Personal

Basketball, Football, Baseball, Soccer, Cycling, Hiking, Surfing, Video Games, Hosting Gatherings, Food

Teaching


Teaching History - 2019-2020
Semester Course Section Title
Fall 2019 IST649 M002 Human Interaction W/Computers
Fall 2019 IST830 M001 Theories of (Digital) Technolo
Teaching History - 2018-2019
Semester Course Section Title
Fall 2018 IST649 M002 Human Interaction W/Computers
Fall 2018 IST830 M001 Theories of (Digital) Technolo
Spring 2019 IST449 M001 Human Comp. Interaction
Spring 2019 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
Teaching History - 2017-2018
Semester Course Section Title
Spring 2018 IST449 M001 Human Comp. Interaction
Spring 2018 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
Teaching History - 2016-2017
Semester Course Section Title
Fall 2016 IST649 M002 Human Interaction W/Computers
Fall 2016 IST830 M001 Seminar in Info Systems
Spring 2017 IST449 M001 Human Comp. Interaction
Spring 2017 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
Teaching History - 2015-2016
Semester Course Section Title
Fall 2015 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
Fall 2015 IST649 M002 Human Interaction W/Computers
Spring 2016 IST449 M001 Human Comp. Interaction
Spring 2016 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
Teaching History - 2014-2015
Semester Course Section Title
Fall 2014 IST601 M050 Info. & Info Environments
Fall 2014 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
Spring 2015 IST810 M001 Practicum in Research
Spring 2015 IST840 M001 Practicum in Teaching
Spring 2015 IST449 M001 Human Comp. Interaction
Spring 2015 IST649 M001 Human Interaction W/Computers
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