Accepted talk – the 8th ECREA conference (postponed to 6-9 September 2021)

New dates for the 8th ECREA conference: 6-9 September 2021

Dear ECC 2020 conference applicants, dear ECREA members,

We would like to inform you that in consultation with the Local Organising Committee, the ECREA Executive Board has approved new dates for the 8th European Communication Conference: 6-9 September 2021. The conference was scheduled for 2-5 October 2020 but we had to make the uneasy decision to postpone. The different timelines and strategies of gradual withdrawal of pandemic prevention measures adopted by individual European countries have made it impossible to organise the event according to our standards of academic quality and hospitality.

The conference calendar will be revised and new important dates will be announced in the conference website.

We are looking forward to seeing you in Braga from the 6 to 9 September 2021.

The submission: ECC20-1152 title Addressing loneliness by means of enacted co-presence in XR  has been accepted to the 8th European Communication Conference to be held in Braga, Portugal, October 2-5, 2020.

Braga, Portugal ECC Abstract submitted tikka et al.

https://www.ecrea2020braga.eu

Addressing loneliness by means of enacted co-presence in XR
Authors Pia Tikka1, Gholamreza Anbarjafari Shahab2, Doron Friedman3, Sergio Escalera4, Mauri Kaipainen5.
1University of Tallinn / BFM / MEDIT, Enactive Virtuality Lab, Tallinn, Estonia.
2University of Tartu, Intelligent Computer Vision iCV Lab, Tartu, Estonia.
3The Interdsiciplinary Center Herzliya, Sammy Ofer School of Communications / Advanced Reality Lab, Herzliya, Israel.
4University of Barcelona, Dept. Mathematics and Informatics / Computer Vision Center, Barcelona, Spain.
5Perspicamus Ltd, Company, Helsinki, Finland.
Abstract Text The very nature of the human species is social. Loneliness correlates with mental and physical ill-being within, for instance, the elderly, or people with disabilities, or other conditions causing reduced life-environment. Simultaneously, an increasing trend in the European lifestyle is to outsource taking care of such members of family into the hands of professional social and medical care. Yet, in the light of recent studies, loneliness can be considered a fatal condition. Loneliness reduces the ability to improve one’s life-conditions, motivation of taking care of one’s health, and affects negatively the functions of society. As an indication of the urgency of the matter, UK has even appointed a Minister of Loneliness. The issue dictates the need to figure out all plausible ways to fight loneliness. While human company must be the primary solution, other solutions must be considered to provide socio-emotional comfort to those who suffer of the lack of human accompaniment.

We propose storytelling and narratives as the key component of satisfactory social interaction. Stories told provide supportive structures for maintaining one’s identity and connectivity as part of the world. This talk takes a look at the intriguing question, whether advanced audiovisual technologies which allow immersive interactive experiences within virtual narratives, in some form, might contribute to relieve this sore issue. To emphasize, immersive technologies, here, VR/AR/XR, cannot as such provide fully satisfactory solutions for complex human issue of loneliness. However, as a range of solutions for socially assistive robot technologies have already been proposed by others, it may be appropriate to balance the so far technology-dominated discussion with the deeply human approach of storytelling. The talk outlines efforts to combine the art of interactive audiovisual storytelling with already existing advanced technologies to explore the interconnections between loneliness and technology. It discusses empowering solutions to loneliness, while being mindful of technological determinism.

ECREA’s Executive Board and the Local Organizing Committee of the 2020 ECC in Braga are closely monitoring the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic as we are concerned about the health and well-being of our members and conference attendees. The conference dates (2-5 October, 2020) remain unchanged at the present time but we wish to announce changes to the deadline for the acceptance of invitations and the registration period to take account of this period of uncertainty and give you more time to make decisions about attendance. We would greatly appreciate it if you could log in through the link below and confirm or decline the presentation of your paper at the conference. The new deadline for your decision is June 15, 2020. Registration will open on June 15, 2020 and the early bird registration will be correspondingly extended. To reiterate, our intention at present is to go ahead with the physical conference in October but we will review this on an ongoing basis as well as engaging in contingency planning. We are not contemplating a virtual conference as an alternative to the physical conference.

Please take care of yourself, your family and your loved ones. Further updates will follow in due course.

ABSTRACT REVIEW RESULTS:

Link: https://www.czech-in.org/cmPortalV15/Portal/ECC20/normal

 

 

NECS conference – Panel on “Transitions: Moving Images and Bodies”

Paper Presentation accepted to NECS conference – Postponed 2021 (covid-19)

Transitions: Moving Images and Bodies

18–20 June 2020
Hosted by the University of Palermo

Panel members: Ian Christie, Ana Olenina, Julia Vassilieva, Pia Tikka

Conference cancelled due to cover-19.

Pia Tikka:
 
Luria-Eisenstein experiment of embodiment re-enacted in virtual reality 
This talk discusses the practical revival of the psychological experiment that Alexander Luria and Sergei Eisenstein conducted a century ago into a virtual reality (VR) setup. The experiment, that applied hypnosis to subjects in order to study the linkage between sensorimotor behavior and mental states, was rediscovered by Julia Vassilieva in 201#.
The talk has several goals: 
(1) To highlight the parachronic nature of theoretical discoveries: As proposed in my Enactive Cinema: Simulatorium Eisensteinense (2008, 42), theoretical ideas have the tendency to re-emerge anew in cycles, adapted to the current context again and again. Even today’s embodied mind approach has its roots deep in the theoretical ideas of historical practitioners in arts and sciences, such as Luria and Eisenstein. 
(2) To address significant paradigmatic overlaps: The re-enacted experiment allows identifying common grounds between the psychoanalytical ideas as it was conceived of as in the Luria-Eisenstein experiment and the neuro-phenomenological approach introduced by Francisco Varela in 1996. Furthermore, it allows relating Raymond Bellour’s idea of the hypnotic nature of cinematic experience (2009) to the experience of immersion in virtual reality settings, as also discussed recently by Marie-Laure Cazin (unpublished thesis 2020). 
(3) To reconfigure the practical set-up of the Luria-Eisenstein experiment by means of VR with a focus on comparing the methodologies of producing immersive experience in their time and today.
In sum, following the original protocol reported by Luria and Eisenstein, the re-enacted experiment extrapolates the theoretical ideas of Eisenstein-Luria collaboration onto the 21st century art-science context.

https://necs.org

SEMINAR ON ENACTIVE STORYTELLING IN NEUROMARKETING (to be announced 2021)

BOOSTING COMMERCIAL AND SOCIETAL-AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS WITH PERSONALIZED EXPERIENCES

Tallinn University

(Postponed to fall 2021 due to covid-19)

The Seminar day is designed for professionals working with commercials and social-awareness campaigns.

The aim of the seminar is to cultivate new ideas for designing personalized media messages by means of enactive storytelling. Stories are the key to human mind, emotions, and social behavior, is it in politics, shopping, or bringing up our kids. Stories allow people to justify their decisions to the others, but, perhaps even more importantly, to themselves.

These stories one makes up are simultaneously inter-personally shared and very personal. And this is where the professional business of storytelling for commercial and social media messages comes onboard.

The speakers with expertise from the field provide understanding of enactive storytelling, the state of the art on neural and physiological methods, and recent trends in neuromarketing. The talks spark fresh insights to challenging topics of (a) designing personalized experiences and (b) measuring personal experience data.

The full day program with lectures and Q&As on elaborated campaign concepts equip the participants with an inspiring package of new ideas to take back to their daily practice.

The participants will have access to knowledge on:
  • Principles of enactive storytelling
  • Recent trends in neuromarketing
  • Real-time biofeedback in designing interactive content
  • Interdependence between human experience, content of media, and physiological measures

 

SPEAKERS

 

 

 

 

KEYNOTE: ERIK BÄCKMAN Partner, Strategy Director, Miltton

 

 

Erik Bäckman (MA) has 30 years of experience in strategic communication, media and journalism. He works at Finland’s biggest communication agency with leadership training, strategy, branding and crisis communication. Prior to Miltton, Erik has worked as head of strategy, head of media research and concept development and as a TV news journalist at the Finnish national broadcaster YLE. His very practically oriented approach to storytelling is based on the current findings of psychological and neuropsychological research.


 

KAIDI REEDE, Consumer and Market Research Manager, Initiative

Kaidi Reede is a consumer and market research manager in media agency Initiative, Tallinn, Estonia. Before joining Initiative 3 years ago she worked as a research expert in Kantar Emor.
Kaidi holds the Master of Social Sciences (psychology and organizational behavior, Tallinn University). Psychology studies and experience in research led to understanding that people do not always behave as they say and we process a lot of information unconsciously. This is where the interest towards neuromarketing started and in 2012 Kaidi was issued a neuromarketing researcher certificate by neuromarketing agency NeuroHM. Since that time Kaidi has conducted numerous neuromarketing surveys in Estonia using different methodologies like EEG, GSR, facial coding, eye-tracking and reaction time measurement. The most recent neuromarketing study concerned alcohol visibility in the shops before and after the restrictions on displaying alcoholic drinks passed into law in June 2019. Kaidi has also performed on neuromarketing topic at different conferences and as a guest speaker in universities.

 

 

 

HEIDI REINSON, Senior Consultant in Behavioural Sciences, Kanta Emor

Heidi Reinson started her career in marketing and brand management, working in The Coca-Cola Company and Valio Baltics. She soon realised that her degree in Economics is not enough to fully understand the consumer. Her interest in the scientific background of consumer behaviour led to her MSc studies in Cognitive and Decision Sciences at University College London (UCL). After UCL, Heidi’s mission has been to combine the two distinct research areas – marketing and cognitive science – in the most practical ways. Heidi was the first in the Baltics to conduct neuromarketing studies (spring 2012) and has been active in popularizing behavioural sciences’ application in the region. She has presented at various conferences in the Baltics (incl TEDxRiga 2015), Finland and Austria as well as written popular science articles. Since 2013, she also teaches Economic and Consumer Behaviour at the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga.


 

PIA TIKKA, Filmmaker, Research Professor, Enactive Virtuality Lab, TLU

Dr. Pia Tikka is a professional filmmaker and EU Mobilitas Research Professor at the Baltic Film, Media, Arts and Communication School (BFM) and MEDIT Centre of Excellence, Tallinn University. She holds the honorary title of Adjunct Professor of New Narrative Media at the University of Lapland. Prior to her joining BFM, she was the Principal Investigator for the NeuroCine project  (2010-2017)  at Aalto University, Finland, contributing also to the neuroeconomics in NeuroService project at the Laurea University of Applied Sciences (2014–2015). In 2010, she was a Fulbright scholar in the Institute for Multimedia Literacy at the University of Southern California and a researcher in residency in Neuroaesthetics at the Minerva Foundation, Berkeley, US. She was a lecturer in Film Theory and Film Analysis at the Baltic School of Film and Media (2006-2007). As a filmmaker, Pia has directed the feature films Daughters of Yemanjá (1996), Sand Bride (1998), several interactive media projects, and published on the topics of enactive media, including her book “Enactive Cinema: Simulatorium Eisensteinense”(2008). She holds degree of Graphic Designer in Advertising, and has a decade long work experience in advertising and concept designing. Currently, her Enactive Virtuality research group studies psychophysiological and emotional basis of cinematic systems, storytelling and creative imagination.

 

 

 

PROGRAM (t.b.c.)

9:30 Registering & Mingling

9:50 Opening of seminar 

10-11 Enactive storytelling – Pia Tikka

The lecture binds together the storytelling as driving cognitive dynamics of decision making and ‘enactive’ as unconscious interaction between a person and media. A set of case studies highlight the interdependence of narrative sense-making and personalized media experiences.

11-12 Neuromarketing in practice – Kaidi Reedi

The first hand insights to neuromarketing methods used in Estonia, highlighted with case studies. The pros and cons of methods used in real life environments and laboratory settings are discussed, including eye-tracking, valence/arousal measures, electroencephalography (EEG), reaction time measurement and emotional coding surveys.

12:00-13:00 Lunch

13:00-14:00 Nudging – a toolbox for marketing professionals and policy makers– Heidi Reinson

The presentation will give an overview of human decision making processes and inspire you to use behavioural insights in designing marketing activities and social interventions. She will combine academic research findings with real life examples.

14-14:15 Case: (t.b.c.)

14:15-14:30 Case: (t.b.c.)

4:30-14:45 Case: (t.b.c.)

14:45-15 Coffee break

15-17 Engaging storytelling – Erik Bäckman

How can you engage people with storytelling that conveys your message and involves people in co-creating the story and making it their own? A practical introduction to applying classical storytelling structures and tools in dialogue with your audience.

17-18 Panel and open discussion

New challenges and ethical implications – sustainability, big data, privacy, and other issues

 

Changes in program may occur.

 

 

 

ORGANIZING TEAM

Organizer: Pia Tikka, research professor, Enactive Virtuality Lab, Center of Excellence in Media Innovations and Digital Culture MEDIT, BFM, TLU
Seminar assistant: Andreas Unt, video-marketing specialist in BRANDEM employer branding agency, Estonia.
Creative Lab: Ermo Säks, manager
Consultation: Tiina Hiob, Lecture of Advertising theory, BFM, TLU; Katrin Sigijane, Creative Lab, MEDIT, BFM, TLU

COURSE FEE

220 euros

Accommodation and meals are not included in the the price.

CONTACT FOR MORE INFORMATION

pia.tikka@tlu.ee

A talk at the Forum on Arts & Social Robotics in Hong Kong

Invited talk by Pia Tikka at the Hong Kong Forum Nov 2, 2019.

Hong Kong Baptist University will be partnering with the Consul General of France and the Alliance Francaise to mount an exhibition and a forum, October 31 – November 2, 2019.

The exhibition will focus on the work of the French artist Yves Gellie, specifically his photographs and films related to social robotics and artificial empathy. (t.b.c.)

Hong Kong offers possibilities to play with Sophia from Hanson Robotics.

 

Affective Computing ACII 2019 conference Cambridge

 

The 8th International Conference on. Affective Computing & Intelligent Interaction ( ACII 2019). 3rd-6th September, 2019. Cambridge, United Kingdom.

Enactive Virtuality team has two abstracts accepted for multidisciplinary Special Tracks :

(1) Neural and Psychological Models of Affect and (2) Technological and Biological Bodies in Dialogue: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Multisensory Embodied Emotion and Cognition.

Image: Jelena Rosic in action during an TLU ‘s internal pre-presentation of the  ACII conference talk “Phenomenology of the Artificial” by Kosunen,  Rosic, Kaipainen and Tikka,

Keynote at Actor and Avatar seminar at ZHdK

An invited keynote at the two day conference “Actor and Avatar” organised by Professor Anton Rey, IPF, ZHdK August 29th and 30th 2019 at the Toni Areal, Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). The “Actor and Avatar”  project explores aspects of actor performances particularly aimed to provide facial expressiveness for a virtual character (avatar) and is funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation.

The VR Installation The State of Darkness previously exhibited in the Science Gallery, Dublin (Dec 2018) and in the 360 degrees (Prague 2019) will be presented at the conference. In addition, Enactive Virtuality Lab’s team member Victor Pardinho will run a Master’s Class for ZHdK students and staff.

The keynote by Pia Tikka 29th of August will address a range of topics related to the actors and humanlike virtual characters in the collaborative setting as described under the image.

Images: Two examples of the recordings of a dyadic realtime setting where the two actors are seated in front of a Green Screen in the ZHdK IPF Film studio looking at each other through a display in front of them directly connected to the camera in front of the other actor. The other actor takes the role of an asylum seeker’s interviewer (I), while the other actor plays the role of an asylum seeker (AS). Both are listening to the dramatised background story of the latter while engaged in evaluation of each others emotional state within the dramatised context. The performances are applied to humanlike virtual characters in the project Booth developed at the Enactive Virtuality Lab. Actors (upper row) Dr. Gunter Lösel [AS] and Tim Woody Haake [I]; (row below) Corinne Soland [I] and Samuel Braun [AS]. Images©IPF courtesy of Dr. Rey and Miriam Loertscher from ZHdK research group.

Presenters included:

Images: Derek Bradley, Walt Disney Research Studio Zürich (above) and Matthias Wittmann, Digital Domain (below)

ACTOR & AVATAR EXHIBITION: STATE OF DARKNESS INSTALLATION

 Industry engagement: Derek Bradley, Walt Disney Research Studio Zürich was one of the enactive experienters of facing Adam B in the State of Darkness. Here with Pia Tikka and Victor Pardinho (Sense of Space, Finland).

SCSMI conference Hamburg

Image: Dr Johannes Riis opens the plenary session for honouring the academic career and contribution of professor Torben Grodal at the SCSMI, chaired by Dr. Stephen Prince (right corner). 5 invited speakers included in addition Ed Tan, Mette Kramer, Pia Tikka, and David Bordwell on the June 13th.

 

Conference presentation Pia Tikka: Enactive Virtuality: Modelling triadic epistemology of narrative co-presence

 

The presentation discusses the concept of enactive virtuality in terms of a triadic epistemology, in which holistic understanding is accumulated via reflecting subjective experience against its psychophysiological epiphenomena and varying narrative contexts. Film narrative can evoke strong emotional identification with the screen character, however, in a context-dependent manner. The aim is to deepen the holistic understanding of cinematic narrative in particular as simulated person-to-person encounter. Two concretising case studies of person-to-person encounter are discussed. The first setting applies conventional film as a model of life situations, while another dramatic setting assigns the viewer an enactive role when engaging with an artificial screen character. These settings are compared and analysed in terms of the mentioned triadic epistemology.

TALK by professor Iiro P Jääskeläinen Brain and Mind Lab Aalto Uni

 

Invited lecture and a collaboration meeting with professor Iiro P Jääskeläinen and Enactive Virtuality Lab May 21-22, 2019.

Image: Pia Tikka, Iiro P Jääskeläinen, Jelena Rosic, and Ilkka Kosunen at MEDIT meeting space.

May 21 at 3-4 pm Dr Iiro P. Jääskeläinen, Associate Professor of the Brain and Mind Laboratory, Department of Neuroscience and Biomedical Engineering, Aalto University School of Science, Finland,
gave an open neurocinematic talk on “Using movies as real-life like stimuli during neuroimaging to study the neural basis of social cognition” (room M-134).

Abstract:
Movies and narratives are increasingly used as stimuli in neuroimaging studies. This in many ways helps bridge the gaps between neuroscience, psychology, and even social sciences by allowing stimulation of, and thus also measurement of neural activity underlying, phenomena that have been less amenable to study with more traditional neuroimaging stimulus-task designs. Observation of signature patterns underlying discrete emotions across largely shared brain structures have suggested that both basic and dimensional emotion theories are partly correct. Robust differences in brain activity when viewing genetic vs. adopted sisters going through a moral dilemma in a movie clip have shown that knowledge of shared genes shapes perception of social interactions, thus demonstrating how neuroimaging can offer important measures for social sciences that complement the traditional behavioral ones. Furter, more idiosyncratic brain activity has been observed in high-functioning autistic than neurotypical subjects specifically in putative social brain regions when watching a drama movie. Development of data analysis algorithms holds keys to rapid advances in this relatively new area of research. Modeling the stimulus and recording brain activity is significantly complemented by behavioral measures on how the subjects experienced the movie stimulus.

Image: Jelena Rosic and Ilkka Kosunen engaged in  discussing correlations between ‘pheno’-dynamics and ‘neuro’-dynamics for our micro-phenomenological Memento study, a follow-up for Kauttonen et al 2018.