10/12/18 – Jeff Nickerson

Date: October 12, 2018

Time: 1:15pm

Room: Luddy 1106

co-sponsored with the DS Colloquium

Jeff Nickerson, Professor and Associate Dean for Research, Stevens Institute of Technology

Abstract: Online communities and crowds can successfully engage in creative activity, including the design of products. When they do so, they explore a space of possible designs. They are affected by when others participate, and what artifacts they are creating.  And they can be affected by the design of a site, by the recommendations shown to them. By analyzing online communities, it is possible to gain insight into how and why novelty appears. Moreover, it is possible to steer the exploration of design space. Results will be presented from three ongoing NSF-funded projects that involve both observations of online communities (including Thingiverse, Scratch, Wikipedia) and experiments with crowds. The end goal of this research program is to catalyze collective creativity.


Bio: Jeffrey V. Nickerson is professor and associate dean of research in the School of Business at Stevens Institute of Technology. His research focuses on different aspects of collective creativity, in particular the way crowds and communities design digital artifacts: 3D printing designs, systems designs, source code, and articles. Before joining Stevens, he worked in industry as a systems designer and software developer: he held positions at Time Inc, AT&T, Bear Stearns, Salomon Inc., and was a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers. He has a Ph.D. in Computer Science and an M.F.A in Graphic Design. His most recent NSF-funded project looks at the effects of artificial intelligence on work design: more information can be found at waim.network.