The School of Media and Information (iSchool) is a central scientific institution at the University of Siegen. The iSchool aims to promote interdisciplinary and collaborative, project-oriented and international aligned research. The main task of the iSchool is the exploration of modern mass- and media communication in order to their appropriation, but also to develop applications for information technologies. Therefore the iSchool works empirically, in terms of design and theorizing. It also conducts basic research and contract research - in cooperation with the software- and media industry, institutional and private users, media institutions and services. The iSchool aims to achieve a high level of leverage for all work areas through third party funding projects.
Information and communications technology (ICT) pervades most aspects of our lives and changes everyday’s practices in work and leisure time. To design innovative ICTs we need to engage with practices, institutional arrangements, and technological infrastructures. All of these issues are interrelated and historical grown, they need appropriate design methods. The challenge in the field of human-centred computing is to design innovative applications so that their appropriation leads to a better quality of life, sustainable development, and social integration.
We are investigating into innovative ICTs, especially in the practice fields of cooperative work, community support, entertainment, ageing societies, and sustainability. In doing so, we contribute to the research fields of Human Computer Interaction, Computer Supported Cooperative Work, Ubiquitous Computing, and Software Engineering. The investigations into innovative ICTs in specific domains are related to each other via cross-cutting issues. These issues are currently ubiquitous and software technologies, methods of participatory design, end-user development, integration of organization and technology development, and the foundations of design science.
The media research of the iSchool for Media and Information continues the research tradition of the Institute for Media Research (IfM), which has arose in the year 2001 from the (precursor) institute LUMIS. Based on the research of the fundamentals of media and communication studies within the scope of single projects, the Institute of Media Research has considerably expanded its profile towards applied and praxeological research. Striking examples for this are numerous projects in cooperation with regional and national commercial enterprises (e.g. T-Systems, RWE), in particular however the participation in the security research of the feral government, have all been supported by the Federal Ministry of Research and Education (BMBF). The so-called new media like the internet, mobile, social and smart media have considerably gained importance compared to the classic media (print, radio, TV) within the work on these projects.
Social Studies of Information (ISSI)
The Institute for Social Studies of Information (ISSI) applies tools and methods developed within Science and Technology Studies to the study of information practices. Its members are trained in media studies, the history of technology, and social anthropology. Their current projects focus on the Early Digital as a frame for the integration of history into the social studies of information and on practice theory, in particular the work of Harold Garfinkel and Susan Leigh Star.