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Elections to the Executive Committee of the HUMAINE Association

The Humaine Executive Committee has a rotating membership, as it is specified in the Humaine Association Constitution. Every two years, one third of the Committee members are elected, and will serve for six years. This is to ensure both continuity and a regular input of fresh ideas.

In 2009, there are 6 vacancies.

Members of the Humaine EC are responsible for the actions performed on behalf of the Association. The first duty of the members of the EC will be to elect the President-Elect, who will join the Management Board. Similar to the Executive Committee, the Management Board uses a rotating scheme: the person who was President-Elect for the last two years will become President, the current President will become Secretary, and the current Secretary will leave the MB. Only members of the Executive Committee can become President-Elect.


The following candidates are willing to serve on the Executive Committee. Please take a look at the candidate profiles, then vote by following the link at the bottom of the page.

 The candidates are listed in alphabetical order.


George Caridakis

George Caridakis was born in Athens, Greece in 1977. He received the degree in Informatics and Telecommunications from the University of Athens in 2004 and the same year was accepted from the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering of National Technical University of Athens for a Ph.D thesis in the area of Affective Analysis in Human Computer Interaction that was completed in 2009. His research interests include Affective Computing, Human Computer Interaction, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Pattern Recognition. He has been involved in 3 European and 2 National R&D projects, and has published 10 articles in international journals, 3 book chapters and more than 15 conferences and workshops and is a reviewer in 4 journals and 3 conferences. 

In case i get elected i will give my best to accomplish the goals set by the association, constantly seek new means to promote the Affective Computing research area and ways for an optimal cooperation between the researchers.


Jeffrey Cohn

 I have a long-standing commitment to inter-disciplinary research and service in the emerging field of affective computing and would welcome the opportunity to work with President-Elect Jon Gratch to promote the HUMAINE Association and affective computing more broadly. I am co-chair of this year's conference (ACII), past co-chair of FG 2008, co-editor of a special issue of Image, Vision, and Computing Journal devoted to spontaneous behavior, co-developer of the Cohn-Kanade database, and author of publications in affective computing and related areas among other contributions.  My research as a psychologist emphasizes social, perceptual, and developmental processes, psychopathology, quantitative methods of measuring, synthesizing, and modeling facial and vocal expression, and clinical applications.  (For my CV, please see

 As a member of the Executive Board, I would promote inter-disciplinary efforts of computer and behavioral scientists in affective computing and seek to increase the field's reach among psychologists. New methods of feature processing and machine learning make possible major advances in our understanding of human dynamics and affective computing. The IEEE's new journal on affective computing made possible in part by the HUMAINE Association efforts presents an exciting opportunity in this regard.  The Association and its Executive Board exercise a critical leadership role in promoting inter-disciplinary efforts in affective computing and its clinical applications.  


Cristina Conati

 I have been actively conducting research in emotion-oriented computing since 2000, and I strongly believe that this field is key to advance Human-Computer Interaction to the levelsnecessary to adequately support the increasingly widespread roles that Information Technologies are taking in our society. For this reason, I am deeply committed to contribute to the development and advancement of this field, and I can think of no better way of  increasing my contribution than to become an active participant of the Humaine EC.

In addition to performing the regular tasks specified by the Humaine constitution, I believe I could be of value to the EC by acting as a liaison with several communities (and related conferences)  that have large overlapping interests in emotion-oriented research. These communities include  UMAP (User Modeling, Adaptation and Personalization), AIED (Artificial Intelligence in Education) and IUI (Intelligent User Interfaces). As a member of either the executive committee (UMAP, AIED) or advisory board (IUI) of these communities, I'd work to discover and exploit opportunities for fostering interaction and collaboration  with Humaine and its conference, including for instance, as the EC finds appropriate: (i) coordinating conference dates ad possible co-location; (ii) making sure that Humaine-related events are properly advertised in these communities; (iii) promote the organization of workshops and other events targeting affective computing at the conferences. I also strongly believe that the best chances for a research field to thrive and make an impact lies in being able to continuously attract   and nurture young researchers. So  as a member of the EC I would like to look into opportunities for providing increasingly better support for young researcher in emotion-oriented computing, including, for instance, mentoring initiatives and  funding sources to sponsor student participation at relevant events


Dirk Heylen

 Dirk Heylen is Associate Professor at the University of Twente, working in the Human Media Interaction group. His research interests cover both the machine analysis of human (conversational) behaviour and the generation of human-like (conversational) behaviour by virtual agents and robots. He is especially interested in the nonverbal and paraverbal aspects in conversation and what these signals reveal about the mental state (cognitive, affective, social). These topics are explored both from a computational perspective and as basic research in the humanities, reflecting his training as a computational linguist. He has been or is involved in several European projects such as Humaine, AMI and AMIDA, COST 2102, Semaine, SSPNET, SERA. Dialogue management, human behaviour modeling, cognitive modeling, human-robot interaction, methodological issues in corpus studies and annotation, are some of the topics dealt with in these projects. Current Dutch national projects he is involved in include BrainGain in which neural correlates of a user's experience are explored for Human Computer Interaction using Brain Computing Interfaces and GATE dealing with cognitive models of virtual agents in training applications.

As a member of the Executive Committee I would like to explore strategies for getting more members more actively involved in the association. Despite the low cost of becoming a member, it looks to me that there are still many people active in the field that are not a member of the Humaine Association.  The benefits of becoming a member may not be clear to all. The area of emotion research and human computer interaction is very active, witness the many workshops, conferences, and call for papers for special issues of papers, job advertisements that are posted on the website and the mailing list. The portal and the mailing list provide an excellent way to disseminate information about these activities. However, many of the activities do not bear the Humaine Assocation's stamp. I would like to try to engage members (and non-members to become members so as to be able)  to form Humaine special interest groups that are responsible for organizing special sessions, workshops and symposia with Humaine's SIG's-signature.


Arvid Kappas

I have been conducting research on emotions for over 25 years and have had in the course of my career a particular interest in developments that are now termed "affective computing". This relates both to the processes that elicit emotions, as well as the correlates of emotional processes, such as peripheral physiological activity or nonverbal expression.

I believe it is important to emphasize the mutually beneficial influences that contacts of the "affective computing" community may develop with "traditional" emotion researchers that are either not yet aware of recent developments, or that do not feel that there is necessity or even room for common developments. This is regrettable, as there are many problems in affective computing that are not engineering issues, but simply where knowledge is required regarding certain domains. In turn, emotion scientists might benefit from the potential that artificial systems offer for the testing of specific hypothesis that cannot be equally tested with biological subjects alone. Thus, one of my personal goals would be to strengthen and further contacts between these communities that do not yet connect as much as they might. Here, it appears particularly interesting to strengthen communication with two communities where important developments have been made: 1) colleagues dealing with social processes in moderating affective processes including expressive behavior, and 2) colleagues dealing with affective neuroscience. There are various methods to foster such bridges. I am involved in various networks and societies and believe that there are ample ways not only by spreading information, but by organizing joint activities at conferences that will hopefully lead to joint research proposals and move the field forward. Being on board of the HUMAINE executive I would like to help the association to pursue its goals and offer my service in this regard.


James Lester (previous Executive Committee member)


James Lester is Professor of Computer Science at North Carolina State University.  He received the B.A. (Highest Honors), M.S.C.S., and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the University of Texas at Austin, and the B.A. degree in History from Baylor University.  A member of Phi Beta Kappa, he has served as Program Chair for the ACM International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces (2001), Program Chair for the International Conference on Intelligent Tutoring Systems (2004), Conference Co-Chair for the International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents (2008), and on the editorial board of Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems (1997-2007).  His research focuses on intelligent tutoring systems, computational linguistics, and intelligent user interfaces.  It has been recognized with several Best Paper awards.  His current interests include intelligent game-based learning environments, affective computing, creativity-enhancing technologies, computational models of narrative, and tutorial dialogue.  He is Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education.

Since its inception, the HUMAINE Association has made great strides towards establishing itself as an effective society for promoting affective computing.  It has been my pleasure to serve a two-year term on the Executive Committee, and I am pleased to stand for re-election.  My vantage point on the field stems from a long-term interest in the role that affective computing plays in intelligent tutoring systems.  If elected to a second term, I will focus my efforts in two areas.  First, I will continue my efforts to see that the AI & Education and affective computing communities continue to enjoy a healthy interaction.  As an active member of the ITS community and as Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Artificial Intelligence in Education, I am committed to seeing research in affect-centered learning technologies flourish.  Second, I will work with other members of the EC in seeing the successful launch of the new IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing.  As a member of the Steering Committee of the new journal, I am excited about the prospects for a top tier journal on affective computing.  The journal has a very bright future, and I will endeavor to help the Association realize its significant potential.


Maja Pantic (previous Executive Committee member)

I have been actively involved in the activities of the Humaine Association and EC, including organisation of events (ACII 2009) and initiation of Humaine-related publication outlets (IEEE TAC).

 As an EC member I would like to continue these activities and in particular my work on the IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing (TAC). TAC has been recently initiated by Jon Gratch, Roddy Cowie, Bjoern Schuller, Jianhua Tao, and myself. I am currently elected to be a representative of the IEEE SMC Society in the TAC's Steering Board. Being a member of the Humaine EC would enable me to convey better the standpoints of the EC and the Association in general regarding the policies related to the TAC. Hence, my interest in being re-elected as the member of the EC.


Rainer Reisenzein

I am an experimental emotion psychologist, but with a focus on theory analysis and theory building that goes hand in hand with an interdisciplinary orientation towards, in particular, philosophy (philosophy of science and philosophy of mind) and cognitive science. I have published theoretical, review and empirical articles and book chapters in English and German on diverse emotion-related topics, including emotional experience, emotion concepts, the facial expression of emotion, basic emotions, and the history of emotion. Also, I am co-author (with Wulf-Uwe Meyer and Achim Schützwohl) of a three-volume German textbook on emotions. For more information, please see my homepage and follow the publication links.
A special focus of my research during the past 10 years has been the phenomenon on surprise in humans, considered from the perspective of emotion theory. In this research project, I have been and am cooperating with AI researchers Luis Macedo and Amilcar Cardoso from the University of Coimbra (Portugal). I'd also like to mention that I am a member of ISRE (International Society for Research on Emotion) as well as the German Association of Cognitive Science (Gesellschaft für Kognitionswissenschaft), and have recently become a member of HUMAINE.

 Should I be elected on the executive board of HUMAINE, I would -- apart from fulfilling my regular duties as board member -- in particular try to bring my psychological knowledge and interdisciplinary orientation to bear on issues of relevance to the association. Also, I would do my best to raise awareness of the field of affective computing among psychologists, make affective computing people aware of interesting developments in the psychology of emotion, and generally try to strengthen the ties to psychology (and philosophy).


Björn Schuller (previous Executive Committee member)

Bjoern Schuller received his diploma and doctoral degrees in electrical engineering and information technology for his works in Automatic Speech and Emotion Recognition from TUM (Munich University of Technology), one of Germany's first three Excellence Universities, where he currently stays as senior researcher and lecturer in Pattern Recognition and Speech Processing. He is a member of the HUMAINE Association, ACM, IEEE, and ISCA, and authored and co-authored more than 120 publications in books, journals, and peer reviewed proceedings in the fields of signal processing, and machine learning. Best known are his works advancing Affective Computing. He serves as member of the steering committee of the IEEE Transaction on Affective Computing, and as reviewer for several further scientific journals, including the IEEE Transactions on Multimedia and Audio, Speech, and Language Processing, the Elsevier Pattern Recognition Letters, Signal Processing, Computer Speech and Language, Speech Communication, Neurocomputing, and Image and Vision Computing Journals, and as invited speaker, session and challenge organizer, and program committee member of numerous international conferences. Project steering board activity and involvement in current and past research projects include SEMAINE funded by the European Community's Seventh Framework Programme, the HUMAINE CEICES initiative, and projects funded by companies as BMW, Continental, Daimler, Siemens, Toyota, and VDO. Advisory board activities comprise his membership as invited expert in the W3C Emotion Incubator and Emotion Markup Language Incubator Groups, and his election into the Executive Committee of the HUMAINE Association where he chairs the Special Interest Group on Emotion Recognition from Speech.

In my second period as a member of the HUMAINE Association Executive Committee I intend to continue my work within the task force that put up our Transactions on Affective Computing - now representing our interests as a present member of its Steering Committee. Further, I will maintain and increase my efforts for the first Special Interest Group I had launched: new events in the spirit of my initiatives of the HUMAINE sponsored INTERSPEECH Emotion Challenge and a special session at our ACII conference shall help to further strengthen the binding of the emotion related speech community and maintain our technical excellence. To spread what HUMAINE has provided, integration of new members and PhD students is another major concern of mine - as by commitment for a near-future HUMAINE summer school as special exchange opportunity for young researchers dealing e.g. with data collection, experimentation, and coding of tools for the community. Overall - as before - my main ambitions thus are sophisticated community internal and external networking, further establishment of strong links to other highly reputed associations and organizations, and ensuring HUMAINE's continued prime standing in Emotion-oriented and Affective Computing. By that, I will be happy to serve another period in the interest of this important and humaine association of ours and look forward to all the chances we are currently facing.



Cast your vote on the Ballot page.



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