WebSci10. Raleigh, North Carolina, 26 & 27 April 2010.


Sir Tim Berners-Lee


A graduate of Oxford University, England, in 1989, Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web, an internet-based hypermedia initiative for global information sharing while at CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory. He wrote the first web client and server in 1990. His specifications of URIs, HTTP and HTML were refined as Web technology spread.

He is the 3Com Founders Professor of Engineering in the School of Engineering with a joint appointment in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Laboratory for Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence ( CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he also heads the Decentralized Information Group (DIG). He is also a Professor in the Electronics and Computer Science Department at the University of Southampton, UK.

He is the Director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), a Web standards organization founded in 1994 which develops interoperable technologies (specifications, guidelines, software, and tools) to lead the Web to its full potential. He is a founding Director of the Web Science Trust (WST) launched in 2009 to promote research and educaton in Web Science, the multidisciplinary study of humanity connected by technology.

He is also a Director of the World Wide Web Foundation, launched in 2009 to fund and coordinate efforts to further the potential of the Web to benefit humanity.

In 2001 he became a Fellow of the Royal Society. He has been the recipient of several international awards including the Japan Prize, the Prince of Asturias Foundation Prize, the Millennium Technology Prize and Germany's Die Quadriga award. In 2004 he was knighted by H.M. Queen Elizabeth and in 2007 he was awarded the Order of Merit. In 2009 he was elected a foreign associate of the National Academy of Sciences. He is the author of "Weaving the Web".

In June 2009 Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced Sir Tim will work with the UK Government to help make data more open and accessible on the Web, building on the work of the Power of Information Task Force.

See also: Sir Tim Berners-Lee's Homepage | Wikipedia Entry

Jennifer Chayes


Jennifer Chayes is Managing Director of Microsoft Research New England.  Her research areas include phase transitions in discrete mathematics and computer science, structural and dynamical properties of self-engineered networks, and algorithmic game theory.  She is the coauthor of over 100 scientific papers and the co-inventor of over 20 patents.  Chayes serves on numerous institute boards, advisory committees and editorial boards, including the Turing Award Committee, the US National Committee on Mathematics, the Board of Trustees of the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute, and the Advisory Boards of the Center for Discrete Mathematics and the Janelia Farms Research Institute. 


Chayes received her Ph.D. at Princeton, and held postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard and Cornell.  She is the recipient of the NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship, the Sloan Fellowship, and the UCLA Distinguished Teaching Award.  Chayes is a Fellow of the AAAS and the Fields Institute, and a National Associate of the National Academies.

Interdisciplinarity in the Age of Networks


Everywhere we turn these days, we find that dynamical random networks have become increasing appropriate descriptions of relevant interactions. In the high tech world, we see mobile networks, the Internet, the World Wide Web, and a variety of online social networks. In economics, we are increasingly experiencing both the positive and negative effects of a global networked economy. In epidemiology, we find disease spreading over our ever growing social networks, complicated by mutation of the disease agents. In problems of world health, distribution of limited resources, such as water resources, quickly becomes a problem of finding the optimal network for resource allocation. In biomedical research, we are beginning to understand the structure of gene regulatory networks, with the prospect of using this understanding to manage the many diseases caused by gene mis-regulation. In this talk, I look quite generally at some of the models we are using to describe these networks, and at some of the methods we are developing to indirectly infer network structure from measured data. In particular, I will discuss models and techniques which cut across many disciplinary boundaries.

Melissa R Gilbert


Melissa R. Gilbert is Associate Professor of Geography and Urban Studies at Temple University where she is an affiliated faculty of Women’s Studies and a Senior Research Fellow with the Information Technology and Society Research Group.


Professor Gilbert’s research interests are in the areas of urban and economic geography, feminist and critical race studies, and social action research.  She approaches these broad and interconnected fields through theoretically informed, empirical research examining how urban and economic processes construct, and are constructed by, relations of power and inequality. Her primary research contributions offer alternative theoretical and methodological approaches to study the intersection of gender, racism, and space to further our understanding of labor markets, urban poverty, community organizing and digital inequalities. 


Her research on digital inequalities focuses on the relationships among access to information and communication technologies (ICTs); economic, educational, and health disparities; and poor people’s community-based organizing in the United States. Her current research seeks to understand the relationships among technological and social capital embedded in particular neighborhoods, occupational sex and race segregation, and access to and use of ICTs in areas important to people such as jobs, education, and political participation. By understanding the relationships among gendered, racialized and place inequalities in terms of access to ICTs and economic empowerment, this research will contribute to policy discussions about how to empower people living in poverty.


Professor Gilbert’s work has been supported by the Fulbright Commission, the National Science Foundation, and the Social Science Research Council. Her research has been published in journals such as the Annals of the Association of American Geographers, the Professional Geographer, Urban Geography, Geoforum and Transactions in GIS. She is currently on the editorial board of Urban Geography and Gender, Place, and Culture: a Journal of Feminist Geography. She is past-president of the Geographical Perspectives on Women Specialty Group of the Association of American Geographers as well as a previous board member of the Urban Geography and Critical Geography specialty groups.


She has worked with a number of community organizations related to economic empowerment and digital inequalities. She is currently an elected school board director of the Lower Merion School District in suburban Pennsylvania where she is interested in digital inequalities, connecting curriculum and technology, and attracting girls and underrepresented minorities into STEM fields.


Professor Gilbert received a PhD and MA in Geography from Clark University, a MA in Urban and Regional Studies from the University of Sussex, and a BA in Geography and Political Science from Clark University. She attended the London School of Economics. Before coming to Temple University in 1996, she was a faculty member at Georgia State University and the University of Southern California.

Social Justice and Web Science: Theory, Praxis and Everyday Life


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