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Human-Centered Computing (HCC)

Status: Archived

Archived funding opportunity

This document has been archived.

Important information for proposers

All proposals must be submitted in accordance with the requirements specified in this funding opportunity and in the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) that is in effect for the relevant due date to which the proposal is being submitted. It is the responsibility of the proposer to ensure that the proposal meets these requirements. Submitting a proposal prior to a specified deadline does not negate this requirement.


Human beings, whether as individuals, teams, organizations, or societies, play an integral role in all stages of the creation and use of computational systems. Moreover, computing technologies and human societies co-evolve, transforming each other in the process. Human Centered Computing (HCC) research explores creative ideas, novel theories, and innovative technologies that advance our understanding of the complex and increasingly coupled relationships between people and computing.

HCC research targets diverse computing platforms such as traditional computers, handheld and mobile devices, robots, and wearable computers, at scales ranging from an individual device with a single user to large, evolving, heterogeneous socio-technical systems that are emerging from the increasingly pervasive availability of networking technologies. Environments of interest range from physical interaction with a single device to systems in which places and people, both physical and virtual, merge. As all electronic communications media become digital and interconnected, computing is also playing a central role in how humans communicate, work, learn, and play, dramatically transcending traditional geographical and cultural boundaries. HCC research explores and improves our understanding of new human-computer and human-human interactions, collaboration, and competition, developing systems that are aware of their social surroundings and of the conceptualizations, values, preferences, abilities, special needs, and diverse ranges of capability of the people that use them. HCC researchers and educators explore systems that interact with people using various and possibly multiple modalities such as innovative computer graphics, and haptic, audio, and brain-machine interfaces. Researchers in social-computational systems seek to reveal new understanding about the properties that systems of people and computers together possess, and to develop theoretical and practical understandings of the purposeful design of systems to facilitate socially intelligent computing. Through partnerships and engagements with disciplines in the digital humanities and design HCC research increases our understanding and support of creativity and innovation as it pertains to computing; brings new perspectives and new models of inquiry, practice, and scholarship to computing research and education; and extends the reach of computing to new communities. HCC research outcomes are expected to transform the human-computer interaction experience, so that the computer is no longer a distraction or worse yet an obstacle, but rather a device or environment that empowers the user at work, in school, at home and at play, and that facilitates natural and productive human-computing integration.

The HCC program encourages research on how humans, in various roles and domains, perceive computing artifacts as they design and use them, and on the wider social implications of those artifacts. HCC supports scholars in a highly diverse range of disciplines including the behavioral, computer, design, digital humanities, information, and social sciences.

More information on topics of interest to the HCC program is available at:

Human-Centered Computing (HCC) Staff

Funding Opportunities for the Human-Centered Computing (HCC) Program:

Information and Intelligent Systems (IIS): Core Programs.  NSF 12-580

Program contacts