We are happy to announce that we will be organising the next installment of our long running Workshop series on Modelling and Reasoning in Context (MRC) at IJCAI-ECAI 2022. The 31st International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) will be held jointly with the 25th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence (ECAI). These conferences are the premier international scientific gatherings of AI researchers and practitioners in Europe and world wide. The event will be held in Vienna, Austria, July 23-29, 2022.
The workshop will run as a full day event on Sunday, July 24. In accordance with the guidelines of the main conference, the workshop will be run in-person. Unfortunately, IJCAI-ECAI does not cater for a hybrid event, and no streaming services are provided for workshops. We strongly disagree with this course of action since the last two years of mostly online events due to the pandemic have, in our opinion, been very positive for inclusion and diversity of academic events. We think that face-to-face-only events are a step backwards from the progress we have made. While for this year, the only choice was between not having MRC at IJCAI-ECAI at all and it being in-person only, we currently do not plan to organize any workshops at exclusive (and therefore, excluding) in-person events in the future.
Context has been and remains a central topic in Artificial Intelligence in general. In terms of recent concerns within AI, context is crucial for understanding causation, for personalisation and ethical AI and for the development of contextual AI. As well as these broader concerns, research on context is vital for developments within specific areas of AI:
Machine Learning and Knowledge Representation: In most cases, context can not be modelled a-priori but contextual information has to be inferred from data. In addition, contextual features might change over time, necessitating machine learning approaches for dynamic adaptation of context models and methods for reasoning with uncertainty.
Human-Centred AI: In Human-Computer Interaction, context is crucial for human-centred approaches to systems development. Because of the interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary nature of MRC, the workshop series is ideally suited to build bridges between these two closely related sub-fields of computer science and to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and methods for human-centred approaches.
Ethical and Responsible AI: Context is core to ethical and responsible approaches to AI, as reasoning about contextual parameters is inherent in human interpretation of ethical questions. Furthermore, explicit models of context can help mitigate the effects of algorithmic and data bias. The strong connection between context and ethical and responsible AI makes MRC 2022 an ideal venue for discussing research in these areas.
Explainable AI: With a renewed interest in explainable systems, context is increasingly important to identify user needs and system capabilities in providing explanations of system behaviour at runtime. Research on explainable AI (XAI) within the AI communities if often centred around the transparency and interpretability of the algorithms themselves, what is needed is a focus on contextualising explanations: what makes something work as an explanation, how can explanations help users to reach their goals, and how can the effectiveness and efficiency of explanations be measured.
Explanations as Process: Even with current research supporting the value, structure and function of explanation, it can been argued that XAI is typically defined through the "explanations" (the outcome) rather than "explaining" (the process). There is compelling evidence to look at it as dialogic interaction instead.
Ambient Intelligent Systems: AmI systems are widely characterised as systems and technologies that are, among other things, embedded, context aware, context sensitive, personalised, adaptive and anticipatory, as well as exhibiting some sort of social intelligence.
Affective Computing: If not before, then at least after the move from computing at the workplace to other, potentially more leisurely areas such as games and arts, a focus on hedonic aspects of using computer systems became necessary. Affective computing as a way of dealing with the emotions of users is heavily intertwined with contextual factors.
Responsible Personalisation: Context is central to enabling a more collaborative partnership between humans and machines. But personalisation brings risks to privacy and current methods embed and hide algorithmic bias and data biases. Making context explicit helps mitigating those effects.
Autonomous Agents and Robotics: The concept of context is itself contextual and always pertains to the acting agent. Additionally, context is an important issue in autonomous systems, in particular if they are to be integrated in socio-technical environments with human actors.
Human-Centred Design: Context is crucial for human-centred approaches to (intelligent) systems development. Because of the interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary nature of MRC, the workshop series is ideally suited to build bridges between HCI and AI; bringing a focus on humans into the foreground of intelligent systems design and putting AI to work in a variety of application areas through facilitating the exchange of knowledge and methods for human-centred approaches.
Context is inherently an interdisciplinary topic that, besides AI and HCI, has clear relations to linguistics and semiotics, cognitive science and psychology, mathematics and philosophy as well as other areas such as sociology and anthropology. Given the recent interest in AI beyond the field, MRC can act as a bridge between these different communities and serve as a means for integrating models and findings from these different areas.
The IJCAI-ECAI conference website has more information about the location and the registration process as well as other workshops. Participants of MRC will have to register for IJCAI. In particular, at least one author of any paper accepted for presentation must register for the MRC workshop at IJCAI-ECAI for the paper to be included in the proceedings.
MRC welcomes different kinds of papers, short position papers, research proposals, case studies, results from qualitative or quantitative experiments, theoretical contributions, surveys; early contributions from young researchers and student submissions as much as blue sky papers from senior members of the community.
Please check our submission instructions for details on submitting to MRC 2022 @IJCAI-ECAI. You find the relevant dates in the sidebar (or if you are reading it on a small screen or using a screen reader, below this text).
MRC is an interdisciplinary and highly interactive workshop with a focus on applications within computer science. However, MRC has always had a strong interdisciplinary appeal and does draw from fields such as linguistics, semiotics, philosophy, mathematics, cognitive science, social sciences and psychology as well as various sub-fields within computer science.
MRC has traditionally been held on major AI-conferences such as ECAI, IJCAI and AAAI or conferences focusing on context from different perspectives such as the International and Interdisciplinary Conference on Modeling and Using Context (CONTEXT). These workshops have been successful in raising awareness about the importance of context as a major issue for future intelligent systems, especially for the use of mobile devices and current research on autononomous computing. At the same time, advances in methodologies for modelling and retrieving context have been made and MRC continues to provide a venue for the discussion and furthering of research into issues surrounding context.
With the renewed interest in Artificial Intelligence in general and Machine Learning in particular, we think it is crucial to assure a human-centric perspective, and a closer collaboration between the fields of Artificial Intelligence and Human-Computer Interaction is a necessity. With context being a central concept both in HCI and in AI, we think that the workshop is ideally suited to help further such a human-centric perspective.
For updated information on upcoming events or general discussion, please join our mailing list.
MRC 2021 took place on August 19 & 20, 2021, as a workshop at IJCAI 2021, the 30th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence. The event was held in Montréal-themed virtual reality, 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
MRC 2020 took place in August 2020 at ECAI 2020, the 24th European Conference on Artificial Intelligence. Originally planned to be held in Santiago de Compostela, in the northwest corner of Spain, the conference and all its associated events became fully digital due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The papers are published online by CEUR Workshop Proceedings (CEUR-WS.org, ISSN 1613-0073) as Volume 2787.
MRC 2018 took place at FAIM, the Federated AI meeting in Stockholm. Within FAIM, several leading conferences in Artificial Intelligence were held together in July 2018, including IJCAI-ECAI (The combined International Joined Conference on Artificial Intelligence and European Conference on Artificial Intelligence), AAMAS (Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems), ICCBR (International Conference on Case-Based Reasoning), ICML (International Conference on Machine Learning), and SoCS (Annual Symposium on Combinatorial Search). The papers are published online by CEUR Workshop Proceedings (CEUR-WS.org, ISSN 1613-0073) as Volume 2134.
MRC 2017 took place at IJCAI 2017, the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Melbourne, Australia. It was a full day workshop. For more information, please check the MRC 2017 schedule and paper download page.
MRC 2016 took place at The 22nd European Conference on Artificial Intelligence (ECAI 2016) in The Hague, The Netherlands. It was jointly held with two other Workshops, the 2nd AI-IoT (Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things) and 1st MMDA (Multimodal Data Analytics). The proceedings for all three workshops and the overall schedule can be found on our combined workshop website.
Last modified: Friday, 2022-03-18 17:34 UTC.
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