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Spring Workshop on The Power of Immersive Stories

April 15-16, 2021

The Power of Immersive Stories

5th CHCI workshop on the future of human-computer interaction.

Spring Workshop on The Power of Immersive Stories

After postponing the workshop last spring, we are glad to announce that the CHCI annual workshop will return on April 15-16, 2021, as an online event. The theme is “The Power of Immersive Stories.” There will be several great scholars and artists speaking at the event, and opportunities for deep discussion and future impact as well. Mark your calendars, and stay tuned for more details on the workshop website!

Stories are an effective way to make sense of our experiences in the world. We use them to explain our lived experiences and the reasons behind our actions. By sharing stories with others, we can entertain, educate, and transmit knowledge between generations and cultures. As we experience a story, we understand and see the world of the storyteller.

Advances in augmented and virtual reality are now enabling a new way to share and experience stories. Immersive environments can bring participants to the center of the action. This has prompted researchers and practitioners to ask, what does the future of storytelling look like?  At the forefront of this are questions about how interactivity, immersion, and artificial intelligence change the way we design and experience stories? Our research in this area over the next several years will no doubt answer these questions by drawing upon expertise from a wide variety of disciplines in the sciences and humanities.

Confirmed Speakers


Dr. Rebecca Rouse will speak on Immersive Technologies, Empathy, And Social Change. She is a Senior Lecturer in Media Arts, Aesthetics and Narration in the School of Informatics at the University of Skövde, Sweden.

Dr. Jeremy Bailenson is founding director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, Thomas More Storke Professor in the Department of Communication, Professor (by courtesy) of Education, Professor (by courtesy) Program in Symbolic Systems, a Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment, and a Faculty Leader at Stanford’s Center for Longevity.

Dr. Stephen G. Ware is an assistant professor at the University of Kentucky where he directs the Narrative Intelligence Lab and teaches courses on artificial intelligence and game development.

Confirmed Artists


Celine Tricart is an acclaimed storyteller who has developed a unique and recognizable style involving highly emotional stories and strong visual artistry. She founded Lucid Dreams Productions, a production company specializing in new technologies and bold, empowered and unapologetic storytelling.

Ken Fountain is a talented animator, with experience that ranges from the smallest commercial houses, to the largest animation studios in the world (e.g., Dreamworks). For more information, visit: Splatfrog.com

This is the fifth annual workshop organized by the Center for Human-Computer Interaction at Virginia Tech on the theme of the Future of HCI. Previous workshops are: Algorithms that Make You Think (2019), Designing Socio-Technical Systems of Truth (2018), Technology on the Trail (2017), and the inaugural workshop, What comes after HCI: People, Systems and Information (PSI) 2016.

The workshop will be open to anyone interested in the topic. We expect to involve researchers and students from a variety of fields, including: Psychology, Computer Science, Humanities, Visual Arts, Performing Arts, Cinema, and Journalism.

The workshop is free, but registration is required. The detailed agenda and registration link is available on the workshop website.