Introduction

Introduction

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The notion of human engagement has received increasing attention in the field of HCI, thanks to the movement of user experience (UX) launched around the turn of millennium. Engagement is an experiential or ‘mindful’ concept that has been explored from different perspectives, ranging from Dewey’s “art as experience” 80 years old to McCarthy and Wright’s “felt experience” a decade ago.  Also, several factors influencing engagement have been identified such as sensory appeal, affect/emotion, and need. Despite this progress, what is understood about mind-body relationships underpinning engagement is largely based on the Western philosophies and approaches.  The strong potential of the related Eastern ideas such as mindfulness (e.g., YiJing, Zen) is yet to be tapped for the development of an integrated framework for human engagement, which is generalizable to diverse cultural contexts.    

In this workshop, we aim to discuss which Eastern ideas can contribute to the development of such a framework and how to operationalize it for the design and evaluation of technologies. This aim will be addressed in four threads:

Theoretical: The theoretical thread discusses Eastern knowledge on which the study of human engagement can be based, especially the following questions:

  • What existing Eastern frameworks, models, principles are particularly promising for enabling a deeper understanding of human engagement and providing guidance for designing computer-mediated activities to elicit desirable responses in humans? 
  • How Eastern frameworks (e.g., YiJing) are situated with respect to existing Western ones and how can they leverage each other’s strengths and eventually be integrated? 
  • How Eastern frameworks can be operationalized to help describe or predict the design and evaluation of technologies?

Practical: The practical thread discusses specific findings and methodologies used in studies related to the theme of the workshop, addressing the following questions:What existing studies have been conducted in relation to the proposed theme of the workshop? 

  • What are the significant findings that contribute to the understanding of human engagement?
  • What methods, techniques and tools have they employed in their work and to what effect? Do existing methodologies suffice?
  • What are the relevant design implications for computing technologies?

Reflective: This thread probes into some fundamental queries:

  • Are the ideas from the two traditions evolved over millenniums with different deep-seated values integrable?
  • Is human engagement mostly a physiological phenomenon to be best studied with brain research or a sociocultural event to be analyzed with humanities approaches? These and other provocative questions can stimulate new thoughts about the theme of the workshop.

Programmatic:  This thread discusses how the East-West integration approach should proceed, focusing on the following questions:

  • What are the current states of research from which to build upon?
  • What are the primary challenges and questions in this area?
  • What should be the expected outcome in the next five or ten years?
  • What are the other potential research areas that can benefit from the East-West integration approach, aside from the area of human engagement?