Prof. Athena Vakali (Datalab – Aristotle Uni. of Thessaloniki) participated as a keynote speaker at the 10th ACM Celebration of Women in Computing: womENcourage™ 2023, hosted by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) during 20-22 September 2023.
Her keynote addressed the topic of Quantified Self and Sensing Data Analytics. Discussions took place with respect to ubiquitous sensing and how it can provide valuable multi-modal data empowering novel wellbeing analytics and proactive user stance. Recent work in the field of personalised and adaptive goal-setting in personal informatics utilising data management processes and mining techniques was also presented. She concluded with lessons learned so far and future pathways in the field.
Concurrently, Prof. Vakali participated as a panelist in the workshop organized by EUGAIN COST Action and entitled “Transferring Insights: Lessons from Research to Increase Gender Inclusion in Tech”. She strongly highlighted how important it is for the computing world to systematically consider social dynamics. Gender and equality dimensions are extremely important in this context; the computing world manifests various inequalities starting from biased algorithms and reaching up to unequal career pathways for female computer scientists. Within this context, she further presented the work of her lab (Data and Web Science Lab) on the interrelatedness of technical/innovation processes with complex social dynamics.
Indicatively, through the RESET EU-funded project the Datalab team aims to promote a data-driven change management approach in terms of gender equality in European universities. Evidence-based insights through the project’s dashboard and forum pave the way for context-based policy making and effective materialisation of gender policies.