This year ACM IMX will present two amazing keynotes: Sougwen Chung and Suleman Shahid

Opening Keynote: Where does “AI” end and “we” begin?

Sougwen Chung

Sougwen 愫君 Chung is a Chinese-Canadian artist and (re)searcher based in New York.

In this talk, Sougwen Chung explores the evolution of human and computer interaction towards models of human and non-human relation. Through a de-centering of the human subject, this talk illuminates sensory constellations between humans, machines and nature, stewarding a newfound “planetary sensing” in responsible co-creation with AI.

Rejecting the notion that machines will replace humans, Sougwen’s work addresses the role of art, science, design, and engineering in stewarding destinations beyond the limitations of our current cultural imagination.


Sougwen’s work explores the mark-made-by-hand and the mark-made-by-machine as an approach to understanding the dynamics of humans and systems. Her speculative critical practice spans performance, installation, and drawings which have been featured in numerous exhibitions at museums and galleries around the world.

Sougwen is a former research fellow at MIT’s Media Lab and a pioneer in the field of human-machine collaboration. In 2019, she was selected as the Woman of the Year in Monaco for achievement in the Arts & Sciences and received the Lumen Prize for Art in Technology. She is a featured TED Speaker, discussing her process in post-human collaboration and her project using AI and robots was featured on the cover of Art in America. In 2018 she was an inaugural E.A.T. Artist in Resident in partnership with New Museum and Bell Labs, and was awarded a commission for her project Omnia per Omnia. In 2016, Sougwen received Japan Media Art’s Excellence Award in for her project, Drawing Operations.

Sougwen has been awarded Artist in Residence positions at Google, Eyebeam, Japan Media Arts, and Pier 9 Autodesk. In 2014, she was selected as one of the Top 20 New Visual Artists by Print Magazine.

Her work has been exhibited internationally, including at the National Art Center, Tokyo; NTT InterCommunication Center [ICC], Tokyo, Japan; ArtScience Museum, Singapore; MIT Media Lab, Cambridge; The Drawing Center, New York; The New Museum (Sky Room), New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Geneva; Mana Contemporary, New York, Tribeca Film Festival, New York; The Hospital Club, London; Mutek Festival, Montreal & Mexico City; Sonar Festival, Barcelona. Her work has also been featured in The New Yorker, Wired, Art F City, Dazed and Confused, The Creators Project, MASHABLE, Engadget, Business Insider, Fast Company and USA Today. She has spoken internationally at conferences including Global Art Forum, Singapore; World Science Festival, New York; Cannes Lions, Cannes; WSJ’s Future of Everything Conference, New York; Tribeca Film Festival Interactive, New York; OFFF, Barcelona; FITC, Tokyo; Internet Dargana, Stockholm; SXSW, Austin; The Art Directors Club, New York.

Closing Keynote: Human-media Interaction in the Global South: Designing Immersive Technologies for the Next Billion ‘US’ers

Suleman Shahid

Suleman Shahid is an Assistant Professor in Computer Science at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and is also the director of the LUMS Learning Institute. At LUMS, he directs the ‘Computer-Human Interaction for Inclusion, Wellbeing and Learning’ (CHISEL) Lab, manages the university’s Usability Lab and is the Faculty Lead for the Facebook Innovation Lab at LUMS, which is Facebook’s first Innovation Lab in Pakistan. Suleman is also a part of the National Center on Big Data and Cloud Computing at LUMS and leads its Open Data Pakistan initiative which is a first of its kind open data portal in Pakistan. Suleman is also a Partner & Design Consultant at Designist, a design and innovation studio based in Lahore, and Karachi Pakistan. 

In this talk, Suleman Shahid will discuss his latest university-based research and applied work on designing immersive and interactive technologies for people on the margins. He will discuss his approach of combining elements of playfulness, serious storytelling, gamification and social interaction for designing digital interventions and systems for diverse user groups in Pakistan.

He will explore the way cultural background, religion, literacy level, socioeconomic status and previous exposure to technology shape how different users, mainly at the margins, interact with ,and accept or reject immersive technologies. He will also analyse the pros and cons of using the “quick and dirty approach” for technology development and discuss how people on margins associate short- and long-term expectations with the half-cooked interventions and digital solutions. 

His talk will include four different case studies involving diverse groups of participants and domains to explain the methodological and technological challenges researchers and practitioners face in their studies with marginalized people and how to address some of these challenges while researching in the global south. He will focus on lessons learned on engaging children with autism in the design process while designing a multimedia educational application for them. He will also touch upon the methodological and practical complexities of developing a serious game for teenagers with mental health conditions. Through another case study, he will highlight the challenges and the associated excitement that comes with designing and evaluating immersive games for adults with visual impairment. The final case study will examine the multilayered design process of developing a virtual reality-based intervention for the elderly with dementia.And lastly, based on his experience in the field in both Pakistan and Europe, he will raise a few elementary questions about the process of working with people on the margins. He will also expand on the importance of decolonizing human-media interaction research in the global south while keeping in mind the relative nature of the term “marginality”.

Suleman’s primary area of interest is designing learning and healthcare technologies for/with the margins in the global south with an emphasis on using participatory and inclusive design to drive innovation. His research focuses at the intersection of design, technology, inclusion with applications to (1) assistive technologies (mobile apps and VR/AR systems) to enhance the quality of life of persons with disabilities (e.g. autism, dyslexia, visual impairment, dementia), and persons with mental health conditions (e.g. anxiety, depression), and (2) learning and playful technologies for children.

Suleman received his PhD in human-computer interaction in 2012 from Tilburg University, the Netherlands and PDEng in 2007 in User System Interaction program (Industrial Design) from the Eindhoven University of Technology, the Netherlands. Prior to joining LUMS, he was working as an Assistant Professor in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) at Tilburg University. He has been associated as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Practice with the Eindhoven University of Technology, the Netherlands and as a researcher with the Tilburg Center for Cognition and Communication (TiCC), Tilburg, the Netherlands. He has also worked for PHILIPS Research (High Tech Campus), the Netherlands and Fraunhofer FIT, Germany. He was a TEDxIslamabad speaker.