Keynote by David Elsweiler

We are pleased to announce that David Elsweiler will be giving the keynote at CaRR 2014.

Abstract: Behaviour with Search and Recommender Systems: what can it tell us?

Recommender Systems and IR are technically very similar problems, but are typically treated separately and often investigated by different groups of researchers. Looking at how people behave with such systems can be one way of unifying the problem, as well as the researchers, and can also be a useful, complementary evaluation method.  When examining user behaviour, context is crucial.  By focusing on the user behaviour and the encapsulating context, we can ask questions about tools that combine search and recsys like: when do people prefer to search and when do they prefer recommendations? What does this mean for what they are trying to achieve? In this talk I will try to answer such questions with examples from leisure and health domains. Finally, looking towards the future, I will argue that the relationship between search and recommender systems and behaviour can go full circle i.e., that both have the potential to impact on user behaviour in positive ways, and will present some ideas that I together with collaborators are doing to explore this.


David Elsweiler is a lecturer and post-doctoral researcher at the University of Regensburg, Germany. Before that he was an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg also in Germany.  David’s research focuses on understanding information behaviour with the main aim of designing information systems that align with the way people think and behave naturally. He received his Ph.D from the University of Strathclyde, United Kingdom in 2007. David has published 50 conference papers, journal articles and book chapters on personal information management, search and recommender systems, as well as user studies investigating what users want from such systems and how they behave to achieve their aims. David has won several awards including an ACM SIGIR Outstanding Paper Award (2011) and an Emerald Outstanding Author Contribution Award for best book chapter (2011).

This year he is general co-chair for the Information Interaction in Context Conference ( and he has previously co-organised successful workshops at ACM SIGIR, BCS, ECIR, CIKM, ASIST and CSCW on topics such as Desktop Search, Evaluation of Personal Search, Searching4Fun, Personal Information Management and Living-labs Evaluation.