UIST 2020 Student Innovation Contest: Letting the Distance Bring us Together
Exceptionally this year, we are taking the challenge to another level by shifting the focus from a specific hardware platform, to the design of solutions that would allow us to renew, repair, or strengthen the fabric of our society in these times of uncertainty.

Needless to say, the global pandemic we are facing has deeply affected most, if not all, facets of our academic, personal and social lives. For many, simple activities such as meeting with friends and family, attending classes, or purchasing groceries had to be relearned in an effort to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. The in-person social isolation experienced by significant portions of the population has already been shown to have serious detrimental effects on physical and mental well-being. However, on a larger scale, this situation has unearthed and/or emphasized deeply rooted inequalities and tensions within our society. People all over the planet are regrouping to protest for their rights, oftentimes going against public health recommendations.
The Challenge

With this theme, we are presenting student teams with the challenge to design and/or rethink technologies to attempt to attenuate, or solve, some of the most serious current issues. We leave to them the difficult decision to select and scope the problem they want to tackle within that broad space. Whether they decide to design tools that allow the effective continuation of research work within the current context, a videoconferencing platform that is more accessible to non-tech savvy, disabled, or elderly users, or a novel framework that allows local community-driven support groups to coordinate their efforts, we are expecting creative technological solutions that not only push the boundaries of human-computer interaction, but also propose tangible solutions to real world problems.

Uniquely this year, to encourage remote team work, no hardware platform will be provided. In addition, although we encourage building a functional prototype, it is not a requirement. We hope to also see submissions of creative conceptual prototypes. A convincing demonstration of the proposed solution’s practicality will be expected. Through these measures, we wish to ensure all participants’ safety and make the contest as accessible as possible to a broader community.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE: August 17th 2020, 5PM (PDT)

For details, please visit the full call for participation:
Team Name *
Names can change throughout the contest, but try to keep it catchy and memorable!
Team Composition *
Diverse teams are highly encouraged
School / University *
Primary Contact Name *
Primary Contact Email *
Faculty Advisor Name *
Faculty Advisor Email *
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