The BESC 2021 Doctoral Symposium aims to provide a supportive environment that enables doctoral students to get constructive feedback on their research. Students will have the opportunity to discuss their work with experienced members in the interdisciplinary field of behavioral and social computing. Thus, the symposium offers a unique opportunity to gather valuable expert feedback and get in touch with peer students in the same field. The event is dedicated to Ph.D. students who are at least in the second year of their program, presenting initial results that are not yet mature enough for a full paper. The BESC doctoral symposium covers the same research topics as the conference.


  • Paper submission: 25 September 2021
  • Notification of acceptance: 10 October 2021
  • Doctoral Symposium Camera Read: 15 October 2021
  • Conference date: November 9-11, 2021 29-31 Oct 2021
  • Paper Submission Details/Guidelines

    To participate, students should prepare a four-page paper (excluding references) answering the following questions:

  • The research problem being addressed and its importance.
  • The research methodology and techniques being applied.
  • The solution being proposed, its novelty, and validity.
  • The relation of the work with state of the art.
  • The idea of a four-page paper is to provide explicit material used as a basis for guidance and discussion. Therefore, students should think about the above points carefully and try to make their ideas as concrete and straightforward as possible. Students at relatively early stages of their research may find it challenging to address some of these points but should still attempt to do their best. It is strongly recommended that students discuss the research plan with their supervisors.


    The following structure for the four-page paper is recommended but not mandatory:

    Title: Your name, affiliation, email address.
    1. Introduction/Motivation: Give a general introduction to the domain/area/topic and indicate its importance/impact in Behavioral and Social Computing or other domains.
    2. State of the Art: Describe existing work in the area, work focusing on the same/similar problems, or that might be useful to realizing your Ph.D.
    3. Problem Statement and Contributions: Based on motivation and state of the art, formulate the problem you intend to solve and how you intend to contribute to Behavioral and Social Computing research. This section should include a precise formulation of one (or very few) research hypothesis (what statement you want to validate through your methodology, approach, and evaluation) and the research questions that need to be answered.
    4. Research Methodology and Approach: Describe the research methodology you will apply in your research, including the different steps from the formulation of your research questions to answering them. Also, describe your approach to solve the problem identified and confirm or reject your hypothesis. Discuss how this approach is innovative and novel and how it is (might be) implemented.
    5. Evaluation Plan: Describe your evaluation plan, which is how you intend to validate your hypothesis, your results, and the value of your approach. The plan might be only partially defined, and details might be omitted based on your progress in the Ph.D. work.
    6. Preliminary or Intermediate Results: Being at an intermediate stage, you should report here about the results achieved to apply your approach that might not yet be sufficient for a full evaluation.
    7. Conclusions and Lessons Learned: Present your intermediate conclusions and lessons learned. Describe how your results will or might impact research or the world at large. We do neither expect you to have solved all issues nor expect you to have finished your Ph.D. However, we expect you to understand these issues (although open) and have a clear plan to address them.

    All submissions must be in English, in PDF format, and must not contain or cite proprietary or confidential material. The research plan should be submitted via the Easychair Doctoral Symposium track in the following link Papers will be reviewed based on the relevance, originality, and feasibility of the described research. All the accepted papers will also be shared among all DS students to promote peer-review and critical thinking among participants.

    All accepted and presented papers expect to be included in IEEE Xplore (two-page, two-column style extended abstract) and submitted for indexing in DBLP, Scopus, Google Scholar, EI, etc. The student must attend BESC 2021 for the submission to be published. Students have to acknowledge their supervisory team in the Acknowledgement session.

    Contact details

    For further information, please contact the chairs Aiman Erbad and Barbara Caci Aiman Erbad, Division of ICT, College of Science and Engineering, Hamad Bin Khalifa University (Qatar), Barbara Caci, Department of Psychology, Educational Science and Human Movement, University of Palermo (Italy),

    DS Program Committee Members

  • Kaldhoon Dhou, Texas A&M, University-Central Texas, USA
  • Fabrizio Scrima, UniversitÈ de Rouen, Normandie, France
  • Mahjoob Zweri, Qatar University, Qatar
  • Ali Jaoua, Oryx Universal College, and Liverpool John Moores University LJMU
  • Maher Khalifa, Qatar University, Qatar
  • Osama Halabi, Qatar University, Qatar
  • Keith Phalp, Bournemouth Univeristy, UK
  • Anke Gˆrzig, University of Greenwich, UK
  • Raian Ali, HBKU, Qatar
  • Guandong Xu, University of Technology Sydney, Australia