HMC Pre-Conference 2018

ICA Pre-Conference Call for Papers

The machines are coming, some are here, and they tell us much about what it means to be human. This pre-conference focuses on communication with and between humans and machines. These digital interlocutors have the potential to engage, alter, and disrupt “normal” events, practices, and phenomena. We invite scholars from any epistemological and methodological backgrounds to discuss their work related to Human-Machine Communication (HMC). This encompasses Human-Computer Interaction, Human-Robot Interaction, and Human-Agent Interaction, in this full-day pre-conference. We seek to raise awareness of and further develop HMC research, theory and the scholarly community surrounding it. We welcome scholars from across ICA’s divisions in addition to scholars who have never attended ICA before.

Deadline for submissions: 29 January 2018

Notification of acceptance: 12 February 2018

Preconference Focus: As artificial intelligence, robotics, and ICTs continue to develop and merge, we are increasingly interacting with digital interlocutors such as voice-based agents, robots, and social bots. We also are sending and receiving messages to and from wearable devices. We directly interact with the technologies surrounding us, and digital entities have been and continue to stand in for humans in everyday communication contexts. The recent surge of digital interlocutors into quotidian routines has been accompanied with questions – voiced by leading scientists as well as the average person – regarding the ramifications of these technologies and our interactions with them.

Possible topic areas for participant presentations include, but are not limited to, communicative practices between humans and digital interlocutors, the integration of artificial entities into private, professional, and political spaces, the incorporation of AI into journalism and other media industries, cultural discourse surrounding these technologies, relationship dynamics between humans and machines, reinterpretations and representations of humans as digital entities, and intercultural aspects of HMC.

Pre-conference format: Our goal is to provide a space for participants to present their research and engage in conversation with one another. We have adopted a two-tiered format in which some scholars will be invited to deliver a paper presentation while others will be invited to take part in a poster session. More details are forthcoming.

Proposals: (750-1,000 words excluding references). Proposals should detail what the scholar plans to present and how it relates to the overall focus of the preconference on human-machine communication. We are interested in all forms of scholarship (theoretical, empirical, etc). Proposals should be submitted as an attachment to Patric Spence:



Patric Spence, University of Central Florida
Autumn Edwards, Western Michigan University
Chad Edwards, Western Michigan University
Andrea L. Guzman, Northern Illinois University
David J. Gunkel, Northern Illinois University
Steve Jones, University of Illinois at Chicago
Austin Lee, Northern Kentucky University
Seth C. Lewis, University of Oregon
Seungahn Nah, University of Oregon

After all the presenters have registered, we will have 20 spots left for other attendees. If you would like to attend this pre-conference, please send an email to Patric Spence at for further directions.


The conference agenda is now available 2018 HMC Preconference Agenda