Guest Lecture on Computational Supports for Frame Reflection by Eric Baumer

Friday, February 8, 2013

Seeing Differently: Computational Supports for Frame Reflection

Eric BaumerSpeaker: Eric Baumer, Postdoctoral Associate in Communication and Information Science, Cornell University

9:30 AM, Monday, February 11, 2013
Allen Auditorium
University of Washington, Seattle campus


A given situation can often be understood from multiple different perspectives.
Understanding the processes by which people come to see things from these various perspectives—that is, seeing things differently—is the fundamental interest that drives my research. This talk describes an exploration of this phenomenon in the context of framing in political communication. Drawing on the notion of frame reflection, my current work uses computational text analysis to identify, draw attention to, and promote critical thinking about linguistic patterns relevant to the framing of political issues. I refer to this approach as computational supports for frame reflection. This talk presents results from two studies—one controlled experiment and one field deployment—demonstrating the ways that such tools mediate and interact with the processes of frame reflection. Not only does this work contribute to improving the quality of political communication and public discourse, but it also exemplifies my broader interest in understanding how computational technologies might support more thoughtful, reflective living.

About the Speaker

Eric P. S. Baumer is a postdoctoral associate in Communication and Information Science at Cornell University. His research involves designing, implementing, and evaluating information technologies, especially interactive visualizations based on computational text analysis, to promote critical thinking and reflection. His current projects include using computational analyses of framing in political text to foster more thoughtful, reflective discussions of political issues, and studying technology refusal in the context of Facebook to understand how society decides where in our lives technology is (in)appropriate. Dr. Baumer's work has been supported by such sources as an NSF SoCS grant and an NSF CreativeIT grant, and has been published in CHI, CSCW, JCSCW and other related conferences and journals. He holds an MS and PhD in Information and Computer Sciences from the University of California, Irvine, and a BS in Computer Science with a minor in Music from the University of Central Florida. He is also an avid ultimate ultimate Frisbee player, an aspiring rock climber, and an amateur photographer. More information: