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Human-Computer Interaction + Design Center

Developing the future of human and computer interaction at home, work, and play

About the Center

The Northwestern University Center for Human-Computer Interaction + Design (HCI+D) brings together researchers and practitioners from across the University to study, design, and develop the future of human and computer interaction at home, work, and play. The center draws upon Northwestern’s pioneering leadership in interaction and design research, and supports researchers in their pursuit of new interaction paradigms to support a collaborative, sustainable, and equitable society.

The Center for Human-Computer Interaction + Design is a collaboration between McCormick School
of Engineering and the School of Communication.





Our Mission

Research Excellence. Real World Impact.

The Center for HCI+D builds on Northwestern’s rich history of interdisciplinary research among diverse disciplines including communication, computer science, design, learning sciences, mechanical engineering, medicine, and psychology. Through its broad support for research, educational initiatives and events programming, the Center aims to bring together and inspire the next generation of investigators to address important real-world problems and develop solutions with tremendous societal impact. The Center’s core vision and values build upon Northwestern’s unique interdisciplinary, socially engaged, people-centered approach to interaction and design.

Industry Resources

Industry Resources

We provide rigorous research insights to industry and government leaders — contributing to future products from international technology companies as well as to future policies being decided in local city halls. Browse our current research or contact us if you need help finding an expert or research on a specific topic.

  • Research topics: Find out how the HCI+D center addresses key social and technological issues.
  • Faculty experts: Learn more about the HCI+D researchers and their expertise.
Media Resources

Media Resources

Our faculty researchers are leaders in their respective fields and stand ready to share their expertise. If you are interested in interviewing a faculty member or covering their research, use the resources below or contact us. We’re here to help you get the story!

Scholarly Resources

The HCI+D Center supports a vibrant and diverse scholarly community, where robust debate and discussion are encouraged. If you would like to learn more about HCI+D research, please browse the resources below.

  • News stories: Read the latest HCI+D research news. 
  • Faculty experts: Learn more about the HCI+D researchers and their expertise.
  • Research topics: Find out how the HCI+D center addresses key social and technological issues.

Student Resources

We seek to educate and enable next-generation scholars and policy specialists through cross-disciplinary teaching and training. Find opportunities or get involved using the resources below.

  • Educational resources: Learn more about the opportunities for students and postdocs. 
  • Faculty experts: Learn more about the HCI+D faculty and their socially-relevant research 
  • Research topics: Find out how the HCI+D center addresses key social and technological issues. 

Featured Research and Projects

Disseminating our work to the broader public

As part of its core mission, the HCI+Design Center aims to showcase its work to the broader public, collaborating with media organizations to help circulate its faculty’s research.

How Data Visualizations Can Clarify and Confound Uncertainty

Jessica Hullman’s Scientific American article the weighs pros and cons of common data visualizations.

Read the article

How to Self-assemble Project Teams that are Optimally Effective

Noshir Contractor's team investigates how to self-assemble effective student- and faculty-based teams based on criteria such as learning, cohesiveness, and final performance.

Explore the project and app

How Do People Change Their Technology Use in Protest: Understanding “Protest Users”

Brent Hecht’s team explores the prevalence, motivations, and tactics of protest users, or users who change or stop using a company’s products in protest of the companies values or actions.

Read the paper

AI Use in Journalism and the Future of the Media

Nicholas Diakopoulos writes for The Conversation about his new book exploring how human work will continue to blend with algorithms in the news industry of the future.

Read the article

Explore all research areas

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