Deadline approaching for special issue

Technologies for Affect and Wellbeing
Special Issue

Guest Editors

Rafael A. Calvo (The University of Sydney)
Giuseppe Riva (ICE-NET Lab- Universitta Catolica del Sacro Cuore, Milan Italy)
Christine Lisetti (Florida International University)

Background and Motivation

There is an increased interest in using computer interaction to detect and support users’ physical and psychological wellbeing.  Computers can afford multiple forms of transformational experiences. Some of these experiences can be purposely designed to, for example, detect and regulate students’ affective states to improve aspects of their learning experiences. They can also be used in computer-based psychological interventions that treat psychological illness or that preventively promote wellbeing, healthy lifestyles, and mental health.

The application domain, so far referred to as ‘positive computing’, ‘positive technologies’, and ‘positive design’, draws on ideas from positive psychology, particularly the extensive research on developing human strengths and wellbeing. It is closely linked to the HCI work on personal informatics, and the development of tools that help people learn more about themselves through reflection.

This special issue will focus on ideas, methods and case studies for how affective computing can contribute to this goal. Articles should discuss how information that computers collect about our behaviour, cognition – and particularly affect can be used in the further understanding, nurturing or development of wellbeing and human strengths: e.g. self-understanding, empathy, intrinsic motivation toward wellbeing healthy lifestyles.

Topics include, but are not limited to:
  • Systems to detect or support positive emotions and human strengths for example Reflection, Empathy, Happiness, Gratitude, Self-understanding/ interpersonal skills, Emotional intelligence/ emotion regulation, Social intelligence/ intrapersonal skillsMotivation.
  • Using affect and motivation for physical and psychological health.
  • Cyberpsychology for positive psychology and wellbeing
  •  HCI design strategies for support of wellbeing and human strengths
  • Virtual Reality for support of wellbeing or human strengths
  • Positive personal health informatics for health promotion
  • Patient-centered technologies for healthy behaviour change
  • Empathic intelligent virtual agents for lifestyle monitoring and behaviour change
  • Mobile applications of affective computing for health and wellbeing
  • Informatics technologies for patient empowerment


  • Call for Papers out: Feb 2013  
  • Submission Deadline:  July 1st, 2013  Deadline Extended: 1st August 2013!  
  • Notification of Acceptance:  October 1st, 2013    
  • Final Manuscripts Due:  December 1st, 2013    
  • Date of Publication: March 2014

Review process

The Transactions on Affective Computing Special Issue on “Affect and wellbeing” will consist of papers on techniques, methods, case studies and their evaluation. Some papers may survey various aspects of the topic, particularly in ways that bring the psychological, health and wellbeing, and technical literature together. The balance between these will be adjusted to maximize the impact of the special issue. All articles are expected to follow the standard review procedures for the IEEE TAC.
For more information about the issue, or to let us know that you are planning to submit an article, please email Rafael.calvo [at]

Guest  Editors    

Rafael A. Calvo, PhD (2000) is Associate Professor at the University of Sydney - School of Electrical and Information Engineering and Director of the Learning and Affect Technologies Engineering (Latte) research group. He has a PhD in Artificial Intelligence applied to automatic document classification and has also worked at Carnegie Mellon University and Universidad Nacional de Rosario, and as a consultant for projects worldwide. Rafael is author of numerous publications in the areas of affective computing, learning systems and web engineering, recipient of four teaching awards, and a Senior Member of IEEE – Computer and Education Societies. Rafael is Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing, Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies and co-editor of the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Affective Computing.

Giuseppe Riva, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of General Psychology and Communication Psychology at the Catholic University of Milan, Italy and Head Researcher of the Applied Technology for Neuro-Psychology Laboratory - ATN-P Lab., Istituto Auxologico Italiano, Verbania Italy. Riva has focussed on the psychological issues on Human-Computer Interaction, thus dealing with technology related problems, as well as with more general psychological topics. Riva and his lab have studied the possibility of using IT for clinical treatment and assessment. Since 1996 ATN-P Lab has been funded by the European Community for the Virtual Reality Environments in Psycho-Neuro-Physiological Assessment and Rehabilitation. Riva is co-founder and co-chair of the Cybertherapy International Conference, to be held in conjunction with the Medicine Meets Virtual Reality ConferenceIn 2007 Riva, was awarded the 3rd Annual Cybertherapy Excellence in Research Award. Riva is Editor for Europe of Cyberpsychology,  Behavior and Social Networking, Editor-in-Chief Annual Review of Cybertherapy and Telemedicine, and ofPsychNology Journal. He is also Associate Editor of the Journal of CyberTherapy and Rehabilitation.

Dr. Christine Lætitia Lisetti is an Associate Professor in the School of Computing and Information Sciences (SCIS) in the College of Engineering and Computing at Florida International University (USA), and the Director of the Affective Social Computing Laboratory (   She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from Florida International University in 1995, and in 1996 she received the National Institute of Health (NIH) Individual Research Award to conduct her Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Computer Science and in Psychology at Stanford University.  Her research involves creating digital and engaging socially intelligent agents that can interact naturally with humans via expressive multi-modalities in a variety of contexts involving socio-emotional content (e.g. empathetic health coach, social companion, cyber-therapy, intelligent tutoring system, serious game).  Her most recent research interests involve research in health communication, education and promotion via intelligent virtual characters. Christine Lisetti is author of many research articles, and she is on the Editorial Board of the IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing.