January 2024

Message from the Editors
Heather Love circle image.PNG shannon Lodoen circle image.PNG

Dear SSIT Members,

January has somehow passed us by in a whirlwind! Coming in a little late, we are pleased to be sending out this first installment of the SSIT Newsletter for 2024. There is lots of good stuff here for you, and more on the way for February.

Our goals for the upcoming year include: highlighting the wonderful work that our many active volunteers have been up to; letting you know about opportunities to get more involved with SSIT projects and activities; curating a more robust list of publication and conference opportunities that are out there for you, related to SSIT topics; and generally cultivating a stronger communication network among members of our organization.

Below, you’ll find the following:

  • An invitation to SSIT members who identify as “Young Professionals” to join the community;
  • The latest installment in our running series featuring the SSIT Standards Committee’s Working Group Chairs, this time with Sigmund Kluckner on Standard P7801 (Recommended Practice for Technical Knowledge Commons Initiatives and Platforms);
  • A 2023 Report on activities from SSIT’s VP of Publications, John Impagliazzo;
  • A registration invitation and proceedings update from two SSIT-affiliated conferences;
  • Highlights from Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Pitt’s “Farewell” issue of IEEE Technology and Society Magazine (December 2023);
  • Calls for papers and conference announcements for several opportunities that should be of interest to SSIT members.

As always, we invite submissions of content for inclusion in future newsletters. We welcome announcements for and reports on local Chapter meetings, events, or outreach activities. In addition, we would love to hear about upcoming events, webinars, and conferences relevant to SSIT members.

Please send the proposed content via email to [email protected]. The deadline for inclusion in the next newsletter is 15 February 2024.

Best wishes to you all.

Heather Love (SSIT Newsletter EiC)
Shannon Lodoen (SSIT Newsletter Associate Editor)

SSIT Announcements

All SSIT members are invited to submit brief reports and updates about upcoming and completed presentations and activities you are part of that are relevant to SSIT!

Member Opportunity: Join the SSIT Young Professionals – Shaping the Future Together

Submitted by Danny Xie-Li, SSIT Young Professionals Chair

Who are the “SSIT Young Professionals?"
We are a diverse group of passionate young professionals, volunteering from across the globe, united under the umbrella of Society on Social Implications of Technology. Our shared goal is to comprehend and influence the dynamic relationship between technology and society. Coming from various backgrounds and cultures, our members bring rich perspectives that fortify our collaborative efforts. Our mission is to disseminate knowledge and offer resources on the latest technology and its societal implications.

What is our focus?
Our focus spans several critical areas: Sustainable Development & Humanitarian Technology, Ethics, Human Values, Technology Benefits for All, Future Societal Impact of Technology Advances, and Protecting the Planet & Sustainable Technology. Together, we strive to ensure technology's benefits reach everyone while remaining conscious of its broader impact on our world.

The march of technology is reshaping the foundations of our daily lives, work, and recreation. Each day brings new inventions, challenging long-held concepts, thanks to the continuous evolution of cutting-edge technology.

How can you get involved?
Connect with us on social media:

To become a part of our community, kindly reach out to us by sending an email to [email protected]. We look forward to welcoming you aboard!

Best regards,
Danny Xie-Li
Chair Young Professional SSIT 2024

SSIT Standards Committee Column: Q&A with Sigmund Kluckner

This is the fifth installment of a new column introducing SSIT members to our Standards Committee activities. For previous installments, see the September - December 2023 issues (available at the SSIT Newsletter Archive).

Sigmund Kluckner, IEEE SSIT Standards Committee Working Group Chair P7801, Recommended Practice for Technical Knowledge Commons Initiatives and Platforms

What is this standard?
The recommended practice aims to support the set-up of a Technical Knowledge Commons initiative, with the goal of making technical knowledge more accessible and usable for the general public and subject matter experts alike. A platform on technical knowledge commons can originate from different domains, including sustainability, medicine, infrastructure, etc.

This standard is aimed towards initiatives, organizations, projects and companies who are willing to share their solutions for big social challenges like climate change or the COVID-19 pandemic. The standard will outline the issues generally faced during the development of new technical knowledge commons initiatives and platforms, and will provide a variety of options to support and shorten the duration of this process. Aspects of developing such initiatives will include metadata specifications, taxonomies/ontologies, and contextualization efforts for all types of electronic documentation artifacts (not only documents); the standard will guide developers on options and challenges around project setup, naming rules, data transfer, security, intellectual property licensing strategies, and interoperability with similar initiatives, and many more aspects.

Why is it important?
In recent years, we have seen that solving societies’ current big challenges requires many experts with diverse backgrounds working together globally, collaborating with each other's expertise and perspectives, and utilizing already available and including newly researched inventions and discoveries without having to reinvent the wheel three times. Providing low-barrier access to these can improve the result and reduce the development and/or implementation time towards a working solution, potentially avoiding catastrophic outcomes.

Currently, many organizations share their outputs as publications, often on their own website or behind paywalls, and either not being publicly available at all or very hard to access. Those who start building an outreach platform often do this from scratch, which can take years of hard work. This standard aims to support those building such platforms by providing guidelines and step-by-step suggestions to go from idea to implementation faster, and in turn will help those eager to share their solutions more broadly.

What is a real-world example/case study of how this might help?
There are some examples out there who have implemented the idea of a (technical) knowledge commons already:

  • In the climate change world, Project Drawdown (https://drawdown.org/solutions) has a catalogue of solutions to combat climate change.
  • Repairing smartphones has been made easier by iFixIt (https://www.ifixit.com/), with their step-by-step guides on replacing components and thus prolonging device lifetime.
  • The Ocean Best Practice System (https://www.oceanbestpractices.org/) is collecting methods and practices in the ocean observation space, allowing others to replicate solutions shared for their own use cases.

These platforms have been built from scratch. As new platforms are being envisioned for a variety of other domains and topics, they could benefit greatly from a ‘shortcut’, which is what this standard will provide.

What stage is it at?
The working group on this effort was established in June 2023. Our efforts have been focused on the broader definition of the goal and scope of the standard and are now starting with more detailed definitions.

What is the current geographical or disciplinary spread of your working members?
Most current members of the working group are based in Europe and North America. The disciplines represented reach from environmental sciences to information management to (aero-) space sciences and health. Since the group is fairly new, we are strongly inviting engagement from other countries and disciplines – please join us!

What type of people might be interested or well suited for this standards group?
Everyone interested in making information and digital artifacts more accessible, discoverable, shareable. This can include information managers, knowledge managers, publication/publishing experts, scientists and engineers who have solutions to share – and from all walks of life, disciplines and industries.

What triggered your own interest in this area?
I used to work at a non-profit where I convened a community of practice focused on climate change knowledge portals. We found that the biggest challenge was to get the appropriate information to the relevant audience in a suitable format – and, in the best case, linked by its contents over platform-boundaries. We realized that we are all bound by the same goal of sharing information and have to collaborate.

Call to action
As the project is in an early stage: please come join us in developing this standard – share with us your experience in building a platform/initiative and contribute what has worked well for you, so that others can learn from this.

Contact to Join: [email protected] (Chair), [email protected] (IEEE Program Manager)
P7801 Page: https://standards.ieee.org/ieee/7801/11197/

The content of this article solely represents the views of the author and does not necessarily represent the position of either IEEE or IEEE SA.

IEEE SSIT Publications 2023 Report
Submitted by John Impagliazzo, SSIT Vice President for Publications

As a reminder to all society members, SSIT has three publication vehicles:

These publications have enjoyed varied dimensions of success over the years and decades.

What follows is a summary of our 2023 publication activities:

The Transactions is the newest of the SSIT publications. It was first proposed in 2014 by John Impagliazzo, the IEEE TAB approved it in 2018, and IEEE launched the first issue in 2020 March with Katina Michael as its Editor-in-Chief. In 2023, the TTS submitted its first Periodicals Review and Advisory Committee (PRAC) report, and the review seemed optimistic, with comments asking only for clarifications; IEEE should shortly provide a final PRAC response. The TTS also applied for the Clarivate impact factor (IF) status. In 2023, Katina Michael and Roba Abbas became Co-Editors-in-Chief, believed to be the first such designation within the IEEE.

SSIT’s Magazine is in its 36th year. Over the decades, it has enjoyed significant recognition and awards, achieving a 2023 impact factor of 1.50. TSM submitted its PRAC report in 2020 with positive clearance by IEEE. Its most recent Editor-in-Chief is Jeremy Pitt, who completed his second three-year term in December 2023. Ketra Schmitt began her three-year term as Editor-in-Chief on 1 January 2024.

The SSIT Newsletter has served the SSIT membership for many years. The newsletter has gone from semi-annual and quarterly to monthly in recent years. Heather Love is the current Newsletter Editor-in-Chief, and Shannon Lodoen is the Associate Editor. The SSIT membership fondly receives the Newsletter.

Register Now for SusTech 2024: Inspiring Technology Solutions for Climate Sustainability

Portland, Oregon, 14-17 April 2024

The 11th IEEE Conference on Technologies for Sustainability (SusTech 2024) is designed to explore development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. SusTech brings together scientists, engineers, technologists and scholars from multiple disciplines to hold a dialogue on environmental issues and collaborate on ideas to develop and utilize innovative tools and intelligent systems to address the need for Sustainable Infrastructure. For the 10th Anniversary we will also look into the diffusion over the past decade of sustainable technologies into practice (e.g. design and implementation).

Attendees will learn about the emerging technologies, latest tools, and proactive solutions to take their sustainability programs to the next level. Papers are solicited from industry, government, and academia (including collegiate students) covering relevant research, technologies, methodologies, tools and case studies. Conference content that meets IEEE quality review standards and format will be submitted for inclusion into the IEEE Xplore Digital Library.

Registration information:
Author Early Registration ends 15 February 2024
Early Registration ends 30 March 2024
Student Poster Abstracts submission deadline 15 February 2024

All dates and times in Pacific Time (UTC-7).

Proceedings Available: 2023 IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference (GHTC)

Submitted by Edward G Perkins

The 2023 IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference (GHTC) proceedings have been posted to the IEEE Xplore digital library, effective 2023-12-20. (DOI: 10.1109/GHTC56179.2023).

GHTC is the flagship annual conference that brings together academics, for-profit and non-profit organizations, field practitioners, and students to demonstrate how they are addressing the UN Sustainable Development Goals using technology to meet the needs of under-served communities around the world. This 13th iteration of the conference took place from 11-14 October 2023, at Villanova University (Pennsylvania, USA).

We encourage SSIT members to browse through this impressive collection of contributions!

IEEE Technology & Society Magazine (TSM)

Current Issue
The December 2023 issue of IEEE TSM “hit the newsstands” recently. This is the final installment of the magazine to be produced under the leadership of Jeremy Pitt, who handed off the Editor-in-Chief baton to Dr. Ketra Schmitt on 1 January. Be sure to read Jeremy’s farewell editorial and John Impagliazzo’s contribution to the “Last Word” column, which is focused on the “Seamless Transitioning” that marks our shift from one editorial “era” into the next.

Here is a run-down of what else is in store for you when you head over to IEEE Xplore to check out the December issue:

Open-Access Content:

  • The SSIT President’s Column, by Luis Kun, this month titled “Words, Acronyms, Languages, and Perceptions: The Human Mind, Life, and Semantics Interoperability”
  • A whopping SIX book reviews of recent publications on SSIT-related topics and themes (see the full list at the ToC page)
  • A commentary from Heather A. Love, “On Aerial Perspective, Socio-Technical Systems, and Interdisciplinarity: Reading Modernism Alongside Cybernetics”
  • An opinion piece from Jeremy Pitt & Kate Highnam, “Gender Equality in Engineering: An Institutional Reflection”

Feature Articles:

  • Magdalena Roszczyńska-Kurasińska, et al., “Beyond Data: Recognizing the Democratic Potential of Citizen Science”
  • Arezo Bodaghi, Benjamin C. M. Fung, and Ketra A. Schmitt, “Technological Solutions to Online Toxicity: Potential and Pitfalls”
  • Zahra Atf and Peter Lewis, “Human Centricity in the Relationship Between Explainability and Trust in AI”
  • Ştefan Sarkadi, “Deceptive AI and Society”
  • Mackenzie Jorgensen, et al., “Investigating the Legality of Bias Mitigation Methods in the United Kingdom”
  • Simon T. Powers, et al., “The Stuff We Swim in: Regulation Alone Will Not Lead to Justifiable Trust in AI”
  • Ciske Smit and Jeremy Pitt, “Digital Polycentricity and Value-Sensitive Operationalization”

Information About the Journal
IEEE TSM is SSIT’s award-winning flagship publication. It features peer-reviewed and general interest articles that explore and analyze the profound impacts of technology on our world.

Find out more about the publication’s scope, topics, and article submission guidelines here, and visit the IEEE TSM section of the SSIT website to read about current and past issues.

IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society (TTS)

SSIT NL July 2023 Transactions-June-2023-Coverimage.jpeg

Call for Special Issue Proposals
The Co-Editors-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society (IEEE TTS or Transactions) are calling for special issue proposals from interested members of the international community: informed academics, practitioners, government representatives, and third sector advocates and volunteers, inclusive of independent researchers. This call pertains to special issues that will be scheduled for publication in 2025-26.

  • The special issue proposals should be in line with IEEE TTS’ fields of interest and address an interdisciplinary space or theme with researchers who have strengths in two or more fields, and, more broadly, in technology and society.
  • The special issues must address contemporary, real-world challenges of significance to individuals, communities, organizations, industries, and or society more broadly. The challenges or special issue themes proposed should transcend borders and demonstrate complexity, while relying on multi-dimensional and interdisciplinary approaches.
  • The focus of topics identified in the special issue proposals should deal with the prominent areas of consideration relevant to the identified special issue theme, and the call should be layered allowing for theoretical and methodological contributions, and diverse empirical analysis that is qualitative, quantitative, or experimental, with clearly identifiable objectives.

Please click here to view the full details and requirements, as published in IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society.

Information About the Journal
The IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society publishes four issues each year (March, June, September, and December); submissions are accepted on a rolling basis.

The editorial team seeks research papers on the interactions among technology, science, and society; on the impact of such interactions on individuals and society; and on the ethical, professional and social responsibility in the practice of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Find out more about the publication’s scope, topics, and article submission guidelines here, and be sure to visit the Transactions section of the SSIT website to read about current and past issues.

For expressions of interest to serve on the editorial board as an ongoing reviewer or associate editor, or for other inquiries please email the founding editor-in-chief at [email protected].

CFP: Special Issue on “Imagining Tomorrow’s Infrastructure” (TTS)

The IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society (TTS) has launched a call for papers for an upcoming special issue on the theme “Imagining Tomorrow’s Infrastructure.”

Guest Editors:

  • Dr Lindsay J. Robertson, Massey University
  • Dr Lucy Resnyansky, Defence Science and Technology Group, Australia
  • Professor Clinton J. Andrews, Rutgers University

Current infrastructure has served billions of people around the world and has achieved efficiencies and economies of scale. Most of it was built using assumptions of perpetual growth and demographic and socio-economic stability but once in place it has also generated vulnerabilities and a need to protect against the exploitation of those vulnerabilities. The relevance of some foundational assumptions is decreasing, and further changes may be expected. The precise scope of what counts as ‘infrastructure’ varies by jurisdiction and ideology, yielding almost arbitrary distinctions between it and other equally essential services (banking and finance, health services, communications, logistics and food distribution, etc.) that are left to be provided by the marketplace. There is similar variation in whether public or private actors provide infrastructure services. Paradoxically, we have seen a deterioration of mental health in an era when the infrastructure required for the provision of basic physical needs has seldom been better, and similarly we have seen a pandemic of loneliness in an era when the infrastructural means of communications have never been better. Finally, although the phrase “revolutionary technology” has been overused, technological changes have generated new design opportunities that may yield more robust performance of infrastructural systems.

Noting that many of the original drivers for infrastructure development have changed and worrisome vulnerabilities and interdependencies have emerged, it is timely to assess the future of infrastructure systems. Assessments should consider the diversity of economic conditions, network effects, and broader environmental and cultural changes. Some adaptations to the scope of “infrastructure” may be needed. Sewage treatment, roads/rails and bridges, power transmission, potable water provision and administrative accommodation have been traditionally considered as essential infrastructure, but financial services, healthcare and communications may claim to be equally foundational. Basic needs must not be forgotten but long-term changes to the definition of “basic needs” served by infrastructure warrant consideration. Less centralized and more mobile human populations (whether voluntary migrants or refugees) create specific infrastructure-planning challenges that deserve assessment of issues including unequal access, variations in the timing of demand, and a desire for greater interoperability.

Family members and local social networks once informally satisfied many human needs such as friendship, child-support, medical treatment, and care of the elderly. Now many people look for these services in the marketplace or from infrastructure providers. Changing patterns of mobility (and provision for those living with disability) and opportunities for remote working have disrupted historical approaches in surprising ways. In a society whose demographics and means of economic production are changing fundamentally there are challenges in building infrastructure that offers improved ability to meet real human needs. Efforts to augment physical infrastructures with sensors and autonomous intelligence are underway, leaving open questions about their economic, social and ethical implications.

Let’s apply our research to identifying/evaluating the social changes that would be required to support radically changed infrastructure. Let’s imagine which infrastructure investments will retain value if disruptive technologies such as telemedicine, local energy storage, or local food and medicine synthesis mature. Let’s consider whether it is feasible to predict the advent of disruptive infrastructural technologies – and finally let us consider how infrastructure systems can make graceful transitions to future scopes and future configurations.

Acceptable types of paper may include:

  • Interdisciplinary considerations connecting technical perspectives on future critical infrastructure to socio-cultural and political-economic theories
  • Papers approaching critical infrastructure as a social construct shaped by socio-historical contexts, competing discourses and visions of the future
  • Examinations of theoretical concepts and broader sociocultural ideas for approaching the future critical infrastructures problem
  • Investigations that describe and explain change in infrastructure systems. Reviews of literature on one or more of the proposed themes

Special issue submissions may be focused upon, but not need not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Resilient and robust infrastructure
  • New and changing infrastructure scope
  • (Re)distributed infrastructure
  • Connectedness and meeting real human needs
  • Supporting a next-generation infrastructure
  • Disruptive infrastructural technology
  • Sociotechnical and economic transition options
  • ”future proof” infrastructure approaches

Important dates:

  • Submissions open: NOW
  • Submissions close: 29 March 2024
  • Author latest notifications of acceptance: June 2024
  • Subsequent review rounds: June-September 2024
  • Final receipt of final files 01 October 2024
  • Publication of special issue (tentative): 01 December 2024

Full details and submission information are available here.

CFP: Special Issue on “Indigenous Knowledge and Information Technology for Sustainable Development”

This CFP is for a Special Issue that will be developed in affiliation with the IEEE ISTAS 2023 Conference.

Guest Editors:

  • Ransom Bawack, Audencia Business School, France
  • Sian Roderick, School of Management, Swansea University, Wales, UK
  • Abdalla Badhrus, Muslim Education and Welfare Association (MEWA), Kenya
  • Denis Dennehy, Swansea University, Wales
  • Jacqueline Corbett, Faculty of Business Administration, Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada

This Special Issue of the journal Information Technology for Development aims to stimulate rigorous scientific research on the role of indigenous knowledge in IT for sustainable development. Heading into the critical second half of the SDG 2030 agenda, this Special Issue focuses on how to leverage and integrate indigenous knowledge to increase the contribution of IT solutions to the achievement of the SDGs. It aspires to demonstrate how strengthening the involvement of indigenous peoples, local communities, and their knowledge can influence the impacts of IT-based development strategies that meet the needs of poor and marginalized communities. Thus, we welcome papers that reveal the positive and/or negative aspects of associating indigenous knowledge and IT for sustainable development.

This Special Issue welcomes papers from all disciplines and encourages multidisciplinary that apply quantitative, qualitative, design science or mixed-methods research approaches.

Important Dates:

  • Notification of initial acceptance: 31 March 2024
  • Deadline for revised papers: 30 June 2024
  • Notification of final acceptance: 30 September 2024
  • Tentative publication date: December 2024

See the full Special Issue CFP for details regarding context, aims, and scope; topics of interest; and submission guidelines.

Evolution: IEEE Life Members Conference
14-16 April 2024
Hyatt Regency, Austin, TX

We are excited to announce the inaugural Life Members Conference, designed to strengthen the engagement of IEEE's 38,000 Life Members in shaping our collective future. Life Members represent all disciplines across the IEEE's fields of interest. We are also dedicated to giving back and sharing our expertise with the next generation.

The conference has three tracks:

1. Emerging Technologies – that impact seniors
  • Technologies of the Future and the Next Chapter
  • Aging Society and Technology Progress
  • Renewable Energy and Sustainability
2. Applications – technologies used by aging populations
  • Financial and Investment Strategies
  • Smart Systems, Infrastructure, Equipment and Living
3. Contributions – members sharing resources with future leaders
  • Mentors and Influencers in the Modern Society
  • Professional Development, Sharing and STEM Education

Our growing list of speakers include Rodney Brooks (iRobot), John McDonald (GE), Whurley (Strangeworks), Manuela Veloso (JP Morgan), Bernie Sander (AMD), Julie Shah (MIT) (and more!). Speaker commitments are ongoing and over the summer and fall, we’ll have a large list of exciting and engaging speakers, keynotes and topics to share.

Join other Life Members, Senior Members, influencers, innovators, technical professionals, and members of the STEM community in Austin for this inaugural event. Registration will be limited, so be sure to secure your spot early. Stay tuned for further details about the conference and our social media channels.
IST-Africa 2024
May 2024
Supported by the European Commission (EC) and African Union Commission (AUC), IST-Africa 2024 (May) is the nineteenth in an annual series of Ministerial Level Technology Policy, Research and Innovation Conferences. IST-Africa 2024 is technical co-sponsored by IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT).

The IST-Africa Conference Series provides a world-class strategic platform rotating around Africa to strengthen technology-enabled Innovation, Science and Technology and Entrepreneurship related policy dialogues within Africa and between Africa, Europe and the rest of the world, Global Development, Research and Innovation Cooperation and Community Building. It also provides an opportunity to identify potential partners for future research cooperation under Horizon Europe and other international funding programs. IST-Africa is a unique community that brings together cross-disciplinary stakeholders from public, private, education and research, societal, funding and international donor sectors with end user communities focused on ICT and STI Research and Innovation and Technology-enabled Entrepreneurship.

The IST-Africa CFP has now closed, but stay tuned for additional conference details in future newsletters.

ISTAS 2024
18 – 20 September 2024
Puebla, Mexico

SSIT’s annual flagship conference, the International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS) will take place from 18 - 20 September 2024 in Puebla, Mexico. The ISTAS 2024 conference theme is The Social Implications of Artificial Intelligence (AI), and the preliminary CFP is now live on the conference website.

SSIT invites participation from practitioners in academia, industry, and government who contemplate the impacts of technology on today’s society in the areas of ethics, sustainability, and equity, and who particularly examine social values within the tech industry. We also invite individuals involved in Technology Policy that would like to better understand the social implications that will arise with the use of AI.

The conference seeks to foster multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and trans-disciplinary interactions with cross-sector conversations about legal and economic issues of AI and challenges for policy makers. Examples of risks include inadvertent malicious use of AI, or security risks when, say, medical guidelines produced by these systems may contain false information and cause the death of a patient. Plagiarism may occur with the use of AI in education, industry or government. As Society becomes more dependent on the use of AI, new social challenges will arise when AI and automation eliminate manufacturing jobs, requiring re-education of the work force. AI offers new challenges in cybersecurity as well as new approaches for national and international security, AI ethics, ethics in autonomous weapons systems and the use of autonomous transportation vehicles.

Visit the conference website for the full list of topics of interest.

Important Dates
  • Paper submission deadline: 31 May 2024
  • Notification: 30 June 2024
  • Camera-ready paper deadline: 26 July 2024
Ongoing Calls
Call for Expressions of Interest to Host SSIT Conferences
IEEE SSIT organizes, co-organizes, and sponsors conferences focused on technology, society and ethics. IEEE SSIT is seeking expressions of interest from SSIT members interested in hosting the following conferences around the world.

IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS)
IEEE ISTAS is the annual flagship event of the IEEE Society on the Social Implications of Technology (SSIT). It is organized each year by SSIT in cooperation with SSIT Chapters and IEEE Sections. IEEE ISTAS brings together a broad range of disciplines (e.g., natural and social sciences, policy, ethics and education) to share research and experiences about the implications of technology adoption, adaptation and evolution.

SSIT is looking toward future ISTAS two to four years from now to allow planning and continuity between annual events. We are issuing a call for proposals for volunteers as organizers of ISTAS in 2025 and beyond.

IEEE Conference on Norbert Wiener in the 21st Century (21CW)
The 21CW conference series addresses the technical, social and personal legacy of the founder of cybernetics, control theory, and information ethics, Norbert Wiener. It has been held in Boston (2014), Melbourne (2016), and as a virtual event hosted from Chennai, India (2021), and at Purdue University (2023) with satellite activities in India 2014, 2016, 2018.

An announcement for 2025 is expected soon; expressions of interest are welcome for 2027.

If you are interested in hosting one of these events, please contact SSIT Conferences Chair, Jay Pearlman at [email protected] to request SSIT’s Call for Proposals Guide, which provides:
  • Guidance for conference organization and operations
  • An overview of expectations for proposal content
  • Background on ISTAS conference (including a list of recent events)
  • A proposal template
Call for New Content: SSIT Website and IEEE.tv Channel
Thank you to the SSIT Members and Chapters who have responded to date to the invitation to contribute content for publication on the SSIT website. We look forward to receiving regular contributions. Please send articles, event notifications and other relevant content including pictures to Miriam Cunningham, SSIT Web Committee Chair.

SSIT Chapters, Distinguished Lecturers and SSIT supported Events are invited to provide Miriam Cunningham with recordings of Guest Lectures and other relevant content linked with SSIT’s Technical areas and field of interest for publication in the SSIT Society Channel on IEEE.tv. Please send a link by email to download the .mp4 file, include SSIT branding in the recording, and ensure that you have written permission from the speaker to publish it.

Call for Nominations: IEEE SSIT Awards
IEEE SSIT has three major awards, all of which are open for nomination at this time.

The Carl Barus Award for Outstanding Service in the Public Interest is open to anyone, or group, who performs an important public service, possibly at the risk of career or reputation. This includes anyone, whether or not in the engineering profession, or a member of IEEE. Further information on recipients can be found at https://technologyandsociety.org/member-resources/awards-programs/barus-award-recipients/.

The Brian M. O’Connell SSIT Distinguished Service Award is for SSIT volunteers who have demonstrated outstanding service for the benefit of SSIT. More information on this award can be found at

The SSIT Norbert Wiener Award for Social and Professional Responsibility is given to an individual or team for exceptional contribution, or outstanding career contribution in the field of the social implications of technology. Further information can be found at

To nominate an individual, submit information to Bob Dent ([email protected]). Include the individual’s contact information – name, address, phone, email, professional history (year, organization and position), and the proposed citation in 25 words or less. The nominator must also submit their own contact information.
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