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SIT Newsletter header
April 2019

Message from the Editor
Heather Love, Editor, IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT) Newsletter
photo of Heather Love
Greetings, SSIT members!

I hope that you will enjoy this month’s SSIT Newsletter, which includes write-ups about two more of your Board of Governors, updates on recent SSIT Distinguished Lecture and Student Chapter activities, and several conference and publication opportunities.

As always, I invite submissions from all SSIT members for inclusion in future newsletters. To announce an event, news item, volunteer opportunity, Call for Papers, award notice, or other article, please contact me at Heather.Love@uwaterloo.ca. Submissions for the May 2019 newsletter are due by 26 April 2019.


announcements header

Introducing your Board of Governors (BoG)

In our continuing series of short introductions to the current slate of SSIT BoG members, we present Michael Cardinale and Ramalatha Marimuthu, two BoG members whose terms expire at the end of 2019.

As noted in previous newsletters, we hope that these vignettes will help you get to know a bit more about the group’s varied (and impressive!) areas of expertise and backgrounds, the specific goals that different individuals have for their time on the SSIT BoG, and the more general aspirations they each have for the future of the SSIT.

We encourage you to contact BoG members whose interests and areas of expertise overlap with your own, and we hope that these introductions can serve as a starting point for building camaraderie and connections within SSIT as a whole.



My name is Michael Cardinale. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science (BS) Physics, I served in the US Marine Corps, and upon discharge, began a 25-year industry career with several small businesses supporting the development for Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) and US Navy acoustic systems, IFF, radar, and infrared and ultraviolet detection systems programs. My primary areas of specialty were propagation and signal processing. I left industry and went to work for the US Department of Defense where I continued to develop ground and space-based sensors until I retired in 2014.

I am a Life Senior Member, and I have been a member of IEEE since 1986 and of the Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society (AESS) since 1987. My IEEE honors include the Third Millennium Medal and the Northern Virginia Section James F. Strother Meritorious Service Award.

I have served in many positions in Sections, Chapters, and Regions including Chapter and Section chairs, and for several IEEE conferences, including Treasurer of the 2018 IEEE ISTAS. I became the AESS representative to SSIT in 2004, and was appointed the Board of Governors (BOG) Secretary for 2015 and 2016. I have been an elected BOG member since 2016 and was appointed Protecting the Planet Pillar chair in 2017.

I would like to see the SSIT develop closer relationships with other societies and organizations to make the social implications to society integral to the development of new technologies. I would also like to see further expansion of relationships with non-technical organizations to encourage a wholistic view of technical development. You can contact me at cardinal@ieee.org.

My name is Dr Ramalatha Marimuthu, I have been teaching for 33 years, and I currently work at the Kumaraguru College of Technology. I have vast experience in motivating and training students in skill development and peer networking through leadership training workshops, international competitions, conferences, and congresses. I also guide students in developing unique solutions for social problems like inclusiveness and accessibility in day to day life for people with special needs.

I have received many awards from the IEEE, Lions Club, Government of Tamilnadu (India), and Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology (California) for effecting positive changes in community through technology. I have delivered lectures on assistive technology in universities and conferences all over the world and for Google (Mountainview) and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (Richland). I have served on the Clinton Global Initiative Tech Delegation and have been invited to be on the World Bank Group for the South Asia Women in Power Sector Network initiative, WePOWER. My areas of interest are assistive technology, women’s empowerment and effective education.

For the SSIT, I am currently serving as Chair of the Chapters Committee, and I also founded the Women in Engineering (WIE) Subcommittee. In these roles, I aim to increase the awareness of SSIT among other IEEE members and create Chapters where members can share their views on the Impact of Technology on Society, Culture, Happiness, and Ethics. I run a Webinar series with unusual topics like “Hide and Seek with Happiness” with the goal of making these topics useful for larger audiences. My upcoming “Women Virtual Conference” will be addressing the social issues like women and children’s safety, which has been the talk of the year recently worldwide. To learn more about these initiatives, I invite you to contact me at ramalatha.marimuthu@gmail.com.



SSIT Distinguished Lecturer speaks at Tuzla Brain Week


On 14 March 2019, SSIT Distinguished Lecturer Dr. Haris Hamidovic gave a talk on cyber hygiene to students participating in the Tuzla Brain Week (TBW) 2019 conference.

TBW talks took place during the week at several locations in the City of Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina. This year's Tuzla Brain Week has the largest number of international participants yet; in addition to attendees from Bosnia and Herzegovina and countries of the Western Balkan region, the event attracted participants from Turkey, Greece, Austria, Germany, and the Czech Republic. Dr. Hamidovic spoke at the University College of the Internacionalna Poslovno-Informaciona akademija (International Business and Informational Academy).

Brain Awareness Week (BAW) is the global campaign to increase public awareness of the progress and benefits of brain research. This year, in addition to the Student Council of the Medical Faculty of the University of Tuzla "MEDICUS," partners of BAW conference in Bosnia and Herzegovina were: students of the Bosnia and Herzegovina Futures Foundation, the Electrical Engineering Students’ European Association (EESTEC) Local Committee Tuzla, the IEEE Student Branch Tuzla, and the Bosnian and Herzegovinian Medical Students' Association (BoHeMSA) Local Committee of Tuzla.



Call for Expressions of Interest to Host SSIT Conferences

SSIT is a sponsor of IEEE conferences in the field of technology and society. As a reminder, we are currently seeking expressions of interest from SSIT members interested in hosting the following conferences in their cities:
  • IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS)
    ISTAS is the flagship conference of SSIT, addressing issues across the range of SSIT interests. Information about the most recent ISTAS conference is available on their website.
    Expressions of interest are welcome for 2020, 2021, and 2022.

  • IEEE Conference on Norbert Wiener in the 21st Century (21CW)
    The 21CW conference series addresses the technical, social and personal legacy of the founder of cybernetics, control theory, and information ethics, Norbert Wiener. It has been held in Boston (2014), Melbourne (2016), with satellite activities in India 2014, 2016, 2018, and additional information about these events is available on their website.
    Expressions of interest are welcome for 2020 and 2022.
If you are interested in hosting one of these events, or if you would like further information, please contact SSIT Conferences Chair Paul Cunningham at pcunningham@ieee.org.




IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society Submission Portal open soon!
Submitted by Katina Michael

In March 2020, the IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society will launch. The ManuscriptCentral submissions portal is set to open within about a month, and founding editor-in-chief, Professor Katina Michael, will be accepting submissions for the multidisciplinary peer reviewed Transactions of original research. Regular papers are expected to be up to 10 pages, short papers up to six pages, and brief papers up to two pages, using the IEEE Transactions template.

Submissions must address a socio-technical research area with empirical results. Regular papers should make both a theoretical and practical contribution to knowledge; short papers should publish empirical results; and brief papers may act as a position statement of original research drawing on peer reviewed research outcomes.

For expressions of interest to serve on the editorial board as an ongoing reviewer or associate editor, or for other enquiries please email katina.michael@asu.edu.

More information about the approved IEEE Transactions can be found on this website.


Publish your Ethical Dilemma

If you have an experience that involved navigating an ethical dilemma as part of your professional life, we invite you to consider sharing it with your colleagues through the SSIT or Life Member Committee (LMC) newsletters.

A joint SSIT/LMC committee will vet all initial submissions, and authors will work with the editors of the two publications to finalize their submissions. Accepted Ethical Dilemma articles will be published simultaneously in the June and December issues of both newsletters.

Article submissions must be between 300 and 500 words in Microsoft Word format. The IEEE Legal Department requires that all articles be fully sanitized to protect the privacy of people and organizations.

Read an example of a previously published ethical dilemma, John Impagliazzo's story, which is the "Featured Article" at the end of our June 2017 newsletter.

Submit manuscripts to Rosann Marosy at r.marosy@ieee.org.



IST-Africa 2019
Nairobi, Kenya
8-10 May 2019



Supported by the European Commission and African Union Commission, and Sponsored by IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT), IST-Africa 2019 is the fourteenth in an annual series of Ministerial-level Technology Research Conferences.

Focused on Information Society and ICT Policy Dialogues, International Development, Research and Innovation Cooperation and Community Building, each conference brings together senior representatives of leading public, private, education and research organizations from 50 countries to discuss policy, share insight and identify collaboration opportunities.

IST-Africa Week is the flagship event of the IST-Africa initiative, co-funded under the European Framework Programme since 2005 - current Contract No. 723240.

The goals of the IST-Africa Conference Series are to:
  • Support development of the Information Society and knowledge economy in Africa
  • Promote international research innovation, and policy cooperation and coordination
  • Showcase African research and innovation capacity
  • Stimulate exploitation of research results by the public and private sectors
Other co-located multi-lateral and bi-lateral meetings will place during the IST-Africa 2019 week.


International Conference on Computing, Power and Communication Technologies (GUCON 2019)
New Delhi, India
27-28 September 2019


GUCON 2019 is being organized by Galgotias University, India and will take place 27-28 September 2019. The University is based in Greater Noida (NCR New Delhi, India), has an enrolment of over 19,000 students across more than 100 Undergraduate and Post Graduate program, is devoted to excellence in teaching, research and innovation, and to develop leaders who'll make a difference to the world.

GUCON 2019 is a non profit conference and it will provide an opportunity to the practicing engineers, academicians and researchers to meet in a forum to discuss various issues and its future direction in the field of electrical, computer and electronics engineering and technologies. The conference aims to put together the experts from the relevant areas to disseminate their knowledge and experience for the relevant future research scope. The conference is technically sponsored by various society and Institutes. There are multiple tracks in the conference covering almost all areas of Electronics, Computer and Electrical Engineering:
  • TRACK A: Data Mining and Big Data Analysis
  • TRACK B: Communication Technologies
  • TRACK C: Cloud Computing and Computer Networks
  • TRACK D: Power Electronics and Control Engineering
  • TRACK E: Power and Energy Systems
  • TRACK F: Machines and renewable energy
  • TRACK G: Electronics devices, circuits and systems
  • TRACK H: Signal processing
  • TRACK I: Bioinformatics, multimedia and machine learning
  • TRACK J: Robotics and artificial intelligence
  • TRACK K: Language technologies and information retrieval
Confirmed keynote speakers include:
  • Prof. N. R. Pal, President, IEEE Computational Intelligence Society, USA
  • Prof. Joydeep Mitra, Michigan State University, USA
  • Prof. Marcin Paprzycki, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland
  • Dr. Daleep Mohla, IEEE Industry Applications Society, USA
  • Mr. Deepak Mathur, Director-Elect, IEEE Region 10
  • Prof. Vincenzo Piuri, University of Milan, Italy
  • Prof Valentina E Balas, Romania
  • Prof. L. C. Jain, Australia
For more information, please contact the conference chair: Website: www.gucon.org
Email Address: gucon2019@gmail.com


9th IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference (GHTC)
Seattle, WA, USA
18-20 October 2019


The 9th IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference is an international flagship conference sharing practical technology enabled solutions addressing the needs of underserved populations and resource constrained environments around the world and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG).

IEEE GHTC 2019 is Financial Co-sponsored by IEEE Region 6, IEEE Seattle Section and IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology.

Call for Reviewers
Please contact SSIT Conferences Chair Paul Cunningham at pcunningham@ieee.org if you wish to volunteer to review papers within the thematic areas listed above.


EPIC 2019 - Agency
Providence, RI, USA
9-12 November 2019


Registration opens 30 April 2019 for EPIC2019. EPIC is the leading international conference on ethnography in business. Our attendees are a diverse group of practitioners and scholars from every industry and fields such as the social sciences, Science and Technology Studies (STS), Human Computer Interaction (HCI), and design. Our theme this year is Agency:

What does it mean to have agency in an increasingly automated world? Businesses are investing in "intelligent" technologies that promise to take humans "out of the loop." But human agency is not disappearing-it’s evolving, and humanistic perspectives are more essential than ever. EPIC2019 will explore how our models of behavior and culture shape spaces of opportunity and risk for diverse people and organizations. We invite ethnographers and technologists of all backgrounds to advance the value of our work through the prism of agency. Be part of the community, visit their website.



Chapter Report: Hack-a-thon at the Vellore Institute of Technology
Submitted by Navaneethakrishnan Ramanathan
Submitted by Navaneethakrishnan Ramanathan

We invite members to submit brief reports of chapter-level events for inclusion in future newsletters to Chapters Chair, Ramalatha Marimuthu.



The IEEE SSIT Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) Student Chapter held their annual flagship event 10-11 March, 2019. Hack4Cause 2.0, a 24-hour hack-a-thon involving around 1000 participants, served as an excellent platform to develop new ideas, theories, and products to address real-time issues existing in the following five major thematic areas:
  • Agriculture
  • Healthcare
  • Education
  • Security and Surveillance
  • Energy Management
The event engaged several technology domains, including artificial intelligence, the internet of things, machine learning, cybersecurity, data mining, and image processing. The main objective was to promote research and developmental activities in these domains to facilitate information exchange between researchers, developers, engineers and students around the world.



The event was inaugurated by a presidential address by Nives Pandey (Chairperson, IEEE SSIT VIT), and the judging panel comprised of 15 professors from School of Computing Science and Engineering (SCOPE) and School of Information Technology and Engineering (SITE) school with real-time expertise in themes of the hack-a-thon. BYJU'S and StuCred were two of the prime sponsors for the event.

The valedictory ceremony was presided over by honorable Chief Guest Mr. Elangovan S (Director of Finance, Sistema Smart Technologies Limited) and Guests of Honor:
  • Dr. Saravanan R (Dean, School of Computing Science and Engineering)
  • Dr. Amit B. Mahindrakar (Director of Students' Welfare)
  • Dr. Santhi V (Head of Department of Bachelor of Technology-Computer Science Engineering and faculty coordinator, IEEE SSIT VIT)
Towards the end of the event, Adityan Elangovan and Uddipta Goswami, founders of IEEE-SSIT VIT Student Chapter, received formal recognition. Both founders delivered a few inspiring words to the students by sharing their journey at VIT and motivating them to take new initiatives in the years to come. All in all, the event was a huge success.



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