On January 5, 2014 CeRI Postdoctoral Fellow Dmitry Epstein presented the program’s ongoing work to the faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management at Technion – Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel. This presentation included a general overview of the promises and challenges of utilizing Web 2.0 technologies to encourage public participation in complex policymaking. The talk explored the current relevant research of the CeRI program. First, it unpacked the processes of online community building underway on RegulationRoom.org. Second, it discussed the Natural Language Processing research (including a project funded through a grant from Cornell Tech) and its implementation to help align broad and diverse community participation with the needs and expectations of governmental bodies. A brief abstract of the talk can be found here.
On December 29, 2013, as part of a seminar on Communication Technologies in the Daily Life, CeRI Postdoctoral Fellow Dmitry Epstein gave an open guest lecture to the students and faculty in the departments of Communication and Information & Knowledge Management at Haifa University. The talk gave a general overview of the CeRI program’s research into online civic engagement and presented more specific information on ongoing and future research made possible by a recently awarded grant from the National Science Foundation’s Human-Centered Computing Program.
Mary Newhart(Moderator) and Cynthia Farina join a panel of other experts to detail the successful application of technology within the rulemaking process at the ABA's 9th Annual Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice Institute.
The September 21st panel, "Is the UN Really Out to Take Over the Internet?", is part of the Research Conference on Communication, Information, and Internet Policy.
"Youth in an Online World: Views and Perspectives of Youth as Users" brought together youth to discuss social networking, privacy & security, online literacy, and more.
CeRI's Dmitry Epstein presented the paper, "The Value of Words: Narrative as Evidence in Policymaking", at the 7th International Conference in Interpretive Policy Analysis, held at Tillburg University on July 5-7, 2012.
Josiah Heidt presented a paper titled "Regulation Room: Field Testing an Online Public Participation Platform During USA Agency Rulemakings" at the 12th Annual European Conference on eGovernment, held on June 14-15, 2012.
Josiah Heidt and Jackeline Solivan presented a poster, "Regulation Room: Moving Towards Civic Participation 2.0", that was chosen "Best Project" at the 13th Annual Conference on Digital Government Research, held at the University of Maryland on June 4-7, 2012. Mary Newhart and CS PhD candidate Joonsuk Park presented a paper, "Facilitative Moderation for Online Participation in eRulemaking", at dg.o 2012 also.
Post-doc Dmitry Epstein presented at the 2012 International Communication Association conference in Phoenix, AZ, from May 24-28. The CeRI paper was titled "Not by Technology Alone: The 'Analog' Aspects of Online Public Engagement in Rulemaking".
Dmitry Epstein of CeRI and Jeff Hancock of Information Science at Cornell were the keynote speakers at the first annual New Media Gathering Africa, held in March 2012. Dmitry spoke about the impact of emerging media on democratic institutions and political deliberative processes.
On September 30, 2011, CeRI Executive Director Mary Newhart spoke at the 57th Annual Meeting of the Association of Law Libraries of Upstate New York (ALLUNY) in Binghamton, NY. Prof. Newhart gave a quick tour of the Regulation Room website and talked about the current rulemaking on Air Travel Accessibility, including efforts to certify the site as WCAG 2.0AA compliant. She also discussed the research project from the perspectives of law/government; computing and information science; conflict resolution; and civic democracy.
In September 2011, CeRI researchers Rebecca Vernon and Dima Epstein presented a new paper, Broadening the Spectrum for Participations: Lessons from Experiments of Online Public Engagement in Rulemaking, at the by-invitation experts' workshop New ICTs + New Media = New Democracy? Communications policy and public life in the age of broadband. Held at the New America Foundation in Washington, DC. and co-sponsored by the Penn State Institute for Information Policy and the New America Foundation's Open Technology Initiative, the three-day event featured experts from universities across the United States and around the world, as well as government and industry leaders.
The paper describes how Regulation Room is purposefully designed to address various digital divides. Drawing on the work of Jan van Dijk, Paul DiMaggio, and Pippa Norris, it discusses the ways in which Regulation Room's information architecture and moderation protocols attempt to bridge divides of access, technical ability, and participatory skills to enable a broader array of the public to engage more meaningfully in important government policymaking. The paper generated much excited discussion at the workshop about potential future applications of the Regulation Room website and CeRI's research. Rebecca Vernon is an Affiliated Researcher and was the first CeRI Open Government Fellow. Dima Epstein just completed his PhD in Communications and is the first CeRI post-doc.