Year in Review 2023

Image credit: starline on Freepik.

Inspired by the end-of-year reviews of Michael Ekstrand and Matt Kelly, I thought it might be a good idea to do that too.

It has been a pretty full year with many ups– -yet, also downs.

My personal highlights

  • Starting as a full professor at PLUS, advocating interdisciplinary research as part of the EXDIGIT initiative.
  • I had the honor of giving the opening keynote address at ISMIR. ISMIR was an amazing experience.
  • Traveling a lot: From this year’s home countries (Austria and The Netherlands), I traveled for work to Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Switzerland, UK.
  • Reviving the collaboration with AndrĂ©s Ferraro on bias mitigation in music recommender systems. We are going strong đź’Ş


  • 1 journal paper (TORS)
  • 3 full conference papers (UMAP, ISMIR, HICSS); thereof 2 with PhD researchers, one of them nominated for Best Student Paper Award
  • 1 short conference paper (CHIGREECE) with PhD researchers
  • 1 demo paper (CHIIR) with bachelor students
  • 1 full workshop paper (MuRS)
  • 1 proceedings (PERSPECTIVES)
  • 1 Dagstuhl report
  • 3 event reports (PERSPECTIVES, Dagstuhl Seminar, Allyship panel)
  • 1 abstract (IIR)
  • Further, 3 journal papers are under review or in revision state.

Keynotes, talks, and panels

  • 3 keynotes: ISMIR, Women in RecSys, IIR
  • 4 invited talks
  • 1 workshop presentation
  • Panelist at the Inclusion Panel at ISMIR
  • Moderation of the Allyship Panel at CHI

Awards and nominations

  • For the CSUR paper with Eva Zangerle, we received the Women in RecSys 2023 Journal Paper of the Year Award (“Senior”).
  • The UMAP paper with Karlijn Dinnissen was nominated for the Best Student Paper Award.
  • Nominated for the Best Reviewer award at UMAP.


  • Started teaching Advanced Contextual Interfaces in the Joint HCI Master of PLUS and FHS
  • Guest lectures at the University of Regensburg and TU Wien
  • 3 sessions at the RecSys 2023 Summer School, two of them with Martijn C. Willemsen
  • Member of the Education and Advisory Committee for Information Science Master Programs at UU
  • Ongoing: Member of an Honorary Appointment Committee at the University of Siegen

Advising and supervising PhD researchers

  • I am happy that I keep serving as the co-promotor of Marloes Vredenborg (UU).
  • While not officially acting in a (co-)promotor role, I keep working with Anouk van Kasteren (UU); this comes quite handy, as Marloes and Anouk are working on the same project.
  • This year, I started collaborating with Daniele Pretolesi (AIT) as the secondary supervisor.
  • I supervised Karlijn Dinnissen (UU) until including her successful first-year assessment of her PhD plan.

Service & organization

  • Independent Ethics Advisor of the EU project OpenMusE
  • WiMIR mentoring 2023
  • Co-Chairing:
    • PhD Symposium Co-Chair at CIKM 2023, with Haiming Liu
    • Doctoral Symposium Co-Chair at RecSys 2023, with Cataldo Musto and Xiangnan He
    • Allyship Co-Chair at CHI 2023, with Siobahn Day Grady and assisted by Anouk van Kasteren
    • Workshop Co-Organizer of PERSPECTIVES 2023 at RecSys 2023, with Alan Said and Eva Zangerle
    • Dagstuhl Seminar Co-Organizer with Ben Carterette, Nicola Ferro, and Norbert Fuhr
  • Editorial Boards:
    • Joined the Editorial Board of TOIS
    • Ongoing service on the Editorial Board of TORS
    • Ongoing service as a guest editor of a special issue in TORS, with Eva Zangerle and Alan Said
  • Member of PhD Defense committees:
  • (Meta-)Reviewing:
    • Meta-Reviewing activities for the 2023 conferences ECIS, ISMIR, CHI, SIGIR, RecSys, and CIKM
    • Reviewing activities for the 2Ăź23 conferences UMAP, HICSS, BIAS, ICWSM, MuRS, HC-MIR, CIKM, and IUI
    • Reviewing activities for the journals ISR, TORS, TOIS, TKDE, TiiS, CACM
    • 1 international research proposal review
  • Session chairing at CIKM, RecSys, and CHI
  • Election Supervisor for the SIG UCAI, in the GI group MCI
  • Best Paper Award Chair for CHI (Subcommittee Understanding People: Qualitative Methods)
  • Part of the EXDIGIT Research College recruiting committee at PLUS

Third mission / outreach / media

  • Keynote at FMC in Mannheim, Germany
  • Talk at W&K-Forum: Symposion Musik & Mathematik
  • 3 panelist activities: at Expedition KI 2.0, Bzzzz—Konferenz der österreichischen Musikwirtschaft, and the Science Meets Fiction Festival
  • Member of the Advisory Board for the Incubation programs FACTORY and FACTORY+ at Innovation Salzburg
  • 4 media mentions:
    • 1 interview appeared at Backstage PRO
    • 2 interview-based articles appeared at DIE RHEINPFALZ (German) and at ZEITGEISTER—Das Kulturmagazin des Goethe-Instituts (in German and English)
    • 1 short text introducing me as a new professor at Salzburger Nachrichten

Other happiness

  • Ongoing project (as Co-PI with Karin van Es) with UU’s AI & Media Lab and DPG Media. I like our interdisciplinary collaboration.
  • Going strong with Eva Zangerle and Alan said with the PERSPECTIVES workshop series, a SI in TORS, a TORS paper, and an upcoming Dagstuhl seminar in 2024

Upcoming in 2024

  • Our TORS SI will appear in 2024 with two issues.
  • I will be co-organizing a Dagstuhl seminar and a Dagstuhl perspectives workshop.
  • In the summer term, I will teach 3 new courses: Recommender Systems 1 in the Data Science Master program, Intelligent Interfaces in the AI Bachelor program, and Contextual Interaction Design (with Chris Frauenberger) in the HCI Master program.
  • After a long time due to the pandemic, I started attending concerts again: Spitting Ibex and Hot Pants Road Club Funk Orchestra. It’s been a treat.

The downsides

  • I turned down a job offer and still feel bad about it…
  • 1 desk reject at a journal
  • 3 conference submissions rejected
  • We didn’t win the bid to organize RecSys 2025.
  • After moving back to Austria, I was not very active in playing music.
  • It has taken me a while to find an apartment I liked in Salzburg.
  • The many travels for work and the back-and-forth travel between Utrecht and Vienna in the beginning of the year and between Salzburg and Vienna later in the year got increasingly exhausting.


I’m pretty sure I’ve forgotten a thing or two or three. Particularly some downsides (is it denial?!). I want to thank those who supported and encouraged me to move forward, hold my head up high, and uphold integrity.