Abstracts (co-0618@computer.org): 1 October 2017
Full paper: 1 November 2017
Publication date: June 2018

Computer plans a June 2018 special issue on Web Science.

Twenty-eight years ago, Tim Berners-Lee defined the technical foundations for the World Wide Web. Since then, its adoption has driven some of the most significant societal changes in history, thanks to both exponential growth and related technological reverberations. The Web’s influence has transformed business models and the future of work, empowered our ability to realize human rights and mobilize grassroots social movements, and reinvented our goals around human health and the pursuit of happiness. The Web’s infrastructure has also created a paradigm shift in how we learn, communicate, and seek entertainment.

Of course, with every technological advancement, there is a cost. For one, the digital divide—that is, the quality of life disparity between those who have and do not have access to the Web—puts added pressure on the poorest and most vulnerable societies around the globe. Another challenge we face due to the success of the Web is how best to balance data ownership requirements and protection of an individual’s privacy. The dangers of failing to meet this particular challenge could result in a crisis of trust stemming from potentially overwhelming surveillance or an inability to prevent physical or virtual crimes on a massive scale. Ultimately, the Web’s future success or failure will rely on whether it abides by principles of fairness, inclusivity, and open governance.

In 2006, Web Science was created as the field to explore all areas of the Web from a socio-technical perspective, including mathematical properties, engineering principles, and social impact [T. Berners-Lee et al., Science, 2006, vol. 313, no. 5788, pp. 769-771]. Eleven years on, we are still learning.

The guest editors of this special issue seek articles that help establish the current state of the art and science in Web Science as well as highlight major challenges and barriers to the Web’s future development.

Articles could address topics such as

• architecture and philosophy of the Web;
• social machines: collective intelligence, collaborative/peer production, and the future of work;
• Web-enabled social movements;
• Web economics, social entrepreneurship, and innovation;
• socio-technical analysis of the emergence and impacts of online social and information networks;
• governance, democracy, access, and intellectual property;
• personal data and privacy;
• security and trust;
• the digital divide: global access and development;
• knowledge, education, and scholarship on and through the Web ;
• Web Science and the Internet of Things; and
• future Internet.

There is a strict 6,000-word limit (figures and tables are equivalent to 300 words each) for final manuscripts. Authors should be aware that Computer cannot accept or process papers over the word limit.

Only submissions that describe previously unpublished, original, state-of-the-art theoretical or empirical research that are not currently under review by a conference or journal will be considered.

Articles should be understandable by a broad audience of computer science and computer engineering professionals, avoiding a focus on theory, mathematics, jargon, and abstract concepts.

All manuscripts are subject to peer review on both technical merit and relevance to Computer’s readership. Accepted papers will be professionally edited for content and style. For accepted papers, authors will be required to provide electronic files for each figure according to the following guidelines: for graphs and charts, authors must submit them in their original editable source format (PDF, Visio, Excel, Word, PowerPoint, etc.); for screenshots or photographs, authors must submit high-resolution files (300 dpi or higher at the largest possible dimensions) in JPEG or TIFF formats.

Authors of accepted papers are encouraged to submit multimedia, such as a 2- to 4-minute podcast, videos, or an audio or audio/video interview of the authors by an expert in the field, which Computer staff can help facilitate, record, and edit.


Please direct any correspondence before submission to the guest editors:
• Wendy Hall, University of Southampton (wh@ecs.soton.ac.uk)
• Noshir Contractor, Northwestern University (nosh@northwestern.edu)
• Jim Hendler, RPI (handler@cs.rpi.edu)

For author guidelines and information on how to submit a manuscript electronically, visit www.computer.org/web/peer-review/magazines. For full paper submission, please visit mc.manuscriptcentral.com/com-cs.