Web Science: Collaboration and Collective Intelligence

A Workshop for the ACM Conference on Hypertext (2008) - June 19, (Pittsburgh, PA)

Web Science is an emerging interdisciplinary field that lies at the boundary of Computer Science, Sociology, Psychology, Media, Economics and Law. Its aim is to understand the Web and its impact on the way people think, behave and interact. This workshop is for people who believe that their work could be part of this new discipline and who are interested in helping to define Web Science. We invite position papers on a variety of technical topics with a human slant, including Social Collaboration, Knowledge Interfaces, Collective Intelligence and Emergent Structures.


The advent of the Web has profoundly affected our way of working and living. Many of us would feel uncomfortable if the Web or email service in our office went down, even for just one day. We all need to be connected. We all need to communicate and cooperate with others.

Web 2.0 technology and practice has greatly promoted social networking, large scale collaborative knowledge creation, large scale e-democracy activities, and many other forms of interactive collaboration between people. The emerging Semantic Web will impact even more strongly. Imagine if (almost) all personal and organisational data were available on the Web and meaningfully analysable with the help of various specialised software agents, how would people and organisations run their business, how would they identify, select, and collaborate with their partners and customers to face their shared challenges?

Web Science is a proposed new discipline to study the impact of the Web on people and society. Web Science is about understanding how technical innovation changes practise, and how behaviour in the small translates to behaviour in the large.


0900-0915 Welcome
0915-1015 Session 1: Collaboration Support 1
Supporting Social Practice Learning in NGOs (Till Schümmer, Jörg M. Haake - Cooperative Systems, Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany)
PowerMeeting On CommonGround: Web Based Synchronous Groupware with Rich User Experience (Weigang Wang - Manchester Business School)
1015-1045 Coffee
1045-1230 Session 2: User Behavior on the Web
Individual Trust Development in Computer Mediated Teamwork (Xusen Cheng, Linda Macaulay, Alexandros Zarifis - Manchester Business School, UK)
Predicting the Tendency of Topic Discussion on the Online Social Networks Using a Dynamic Probability Model (Yadong Zhou, Xiaohong Guan, Zhefei Zhang, Beibei Zhang - SKLMS Lab and MOE KLNNIS Lab, Xi’an Jiaotong University, P.R.China)
C-index: Trust Depth, Trust Breadth, and a Collective Trust Measurement (Weigang Wang, Mohd Mokhtar, Linda Macaulay - Manchester Business School, UK)
1230-1345 Lunch
1345-1530 Session 3: Emerging Structure
A Thematic Approach to Emerging Narrative Structure (Charlie Hargood, David E. Millard, Mark J. Weal - Learning Societies Lab, University of Southampton, UK)
Mitigating Media Bias: A Computational Approach (Souneil Park, Seungwoo Kang, Sangjeong Lee, Sangyoung Chung, Junehwa Song - Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), Korea)
Semantics Through Language Sharing (Jessica Rubart - arvato services, Gütersloh, Germany)
1530-1600 Coffee
1600-1700 Session 4: Collaboration Support 2
Collaborative Multi-Paradigm Exploratory Search (Michal Tvarožek, Mária Bieliková - Institute of Informatics and Software Engineering, Slovak University of Technology, Slovakia)
A Multi-Dimensional Framework for Facilitating Wide Participation and Shared Understanding (Weigang Wang and Simon French - Manchester Business School, UK)
1700 Close

Intended Audience

The workshop is for people who are interested to collaboration support and collective intelligence in the age of Web 2.0 and the Semantic Web, and who are interested in helping to define the Web Science discipline. This includes not only people with a technical expertise, but also those who study the human aspects of Web phenomena, such as on-line communities, and the impact of these technologies on society.

Important Dates

  • Mar 22 - Position Papers Due
  • Apr 1 - Authors Notified
  • Apr 15 - Final versions due

Call for Participation (Now Closed)

We are asking for position papers on a broad range of topics that fall within the Web Science space. Topics may include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • New ways of collaborative working enabled by the latest Web Technologies
  • Technical and social protocols underlying emerging web technology and practice
  • Novel community interaction, for example, e-democracy, collaborative decision making, or knowledge elicitation
  • Virtual and emergent structures that have changed the way we view or organise ourselves
  • Changes in traditional roles and expectations, for example, notions of authorship and ownership
  • Studies of on-line communities and their behaviour
  • Characteristics and novel applications of collective intelligence
  • Innovative social or knowledge interfaces

Position papers can describe concluded or ongoing work - the objective is to identify a number of themes within Web Science which are of interest to Hypertext researchers, we will ask participants to briefly present in their themes and to lead discussion.

Submissions (Now Closed)

Authors must submit an electronic copy of their position papers (in PDF) directly to the organizing committee via email. Papers should be minimum of 2 pages, maximum 5 pages when printed using the official ACM templates (http://www.acm.org/sigs/pubs/proceed/template.html). At least one of the authors of an accepted paper should register and participate in the workshop.


Workshop proceedings will appear on the Hypertext 2008 Proceedings CD, and will also appear in the ACM Digital Library.


Weigang Wang is Lecturer of Interactive Systems in Manchester Business School at the University of Manchester. He has been involved in hypertext and collaborative system research since 1991. His current research interests include web-based collaborative systems and new way of working, decision-making and learning enabled by such emerging Web technologies, especially the ones combining AJAX and Semantic Web.

David Millard is Lecturer of Computer Science in the Learning Societies Lab at the University of Southampton, UK. He has been involved in Hypertext and Web research for over ten years. His current interests include Knowledge and Narrative interfaces, and the impact of Web Literacy on e-learning.

Wendy Hall is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southampton, UK. She is a founding Director of the Web Science Research Institute, and is currently senior Vice President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, is Vice President of the ACM and is a Past President of the British Computer Society (2003-04). She has published over 350 papers in areas such as hypermedia, multimedia, digital libraries, and Web technologies.

Program Committee

Many thanks to the members of the Program Committee.

Kenneth Anderson, University of Colorado, U.S.A.
Simon French, Manchester Business School, UK
Joerg Haake, FernUniversitaet in Hagen, Germany
Linda Macaulay, Manchester Business School, UK
Roy Rada, University of Maryland, U.S.A.
Jessica Rubart, arvato services, Germany
Till Schuemmer, FernUniversitaet in Hagen, Germany
Manolis Tzagarakis, Computer Technology Institute, Greece


David Millard
Learning Societies Lab
Department of Electronics & Computer Science,
University of Southampton,
Highfield, Southampton,
SO17 1BJ, UK