ICT and Cognitive Science lab
... applying human-centred approaches from cognitive psychology and social science to better design digital technologies
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Nowadays, the digital revolution is drastically changing our lives, yet the possibilities offered by the technological progress are too often driven by mere technological opportunities rather than thoughtful consideration of what human beings really need to improve quality of life.
We believe that design of digital technologies should start and finish by considering the cognitive, social and ethical aspects of human beings as part of social communities.

Our projects are always organized around three main set of activities:

User research

… to elicit users’ needs and practices, leveraging approaches and methods from social sciences.

Design of interaction of digital artefacts

… considering cognitive opportunities and limitation as well as social impact of design choices.

Evaluation of digital technologies

... in the lab and “in the wild”, using methodologies from cognitive and social psychology


The activities organized by the lab are grounded in the teaching for the bachelor degree (laurea triennale) Interfacce e Tecnologie della Comunicazione (offered in Italian), for the master degree (laurea magistrale) Human-Computer Interaction (offered in English) as well as on the research work of Phd students.
Students are involved in all our projects.

Storytelling and language-based interfaces


Practice-based perspective on design of digital artefacts


Interacting with intelligent systems


Wearable and tangible interaction


Ethical aspects of design


Recent Pubblications


    Casula, Mattia, Chiara Leonardi, and Massimo Zancanaro (2022) How does digital technology impact on the co-production of local services? Evidence from a childcare experience. Public Money & Management 42(2):87-97. https://doi.org/10.1080/09540962.2020.1728066
    (pre-print version) Desolda, G., Greco, F., Guarnieri, F., Mariz, N., & Zancanaro, M.(2021) SENSATION: An Authoring Tool to Support Event–State Paradigm in End-User Development. In Proceedings of IFIP Conference on Human-Computer Interaction https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-85616-8_22
    (pre-print version) Caputo, Ariel, Andrea Giachetti, Salwa Abkal, Chiara Marchesini, and Massimo Zancanaro (2021) Real vs simulated foveated rendering to reduce visual discomfort in virtual reality. In Proceedings of IFIP Conference on Human-Computer Interaction https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-85607-6_12
    Fachter, Shani, Gianluca Schiavo, Keren LG Snider, Alessandro Cappelletti, Oliviero Stock, Patrice L. Weiss, Massimo Zancanaro, and Daphna Canetti. “Come and share a story with me”: Promoting engagement between Ethiopian and Non-Ethiopian Israelis via joint digital narratives. Technology in Society 67 (2021): 101723. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techsoc.2021.101723
    Wierbiłowicz, J., Cappelletti, A., Giovanelli, D., Pasqualotto, A., Bentenuto, A., Farella, E., & Zancanaro, M. (2020). Look at me and grab this! Materiality and the practices around negotiation of social attention with children on the autistic spectrum. In Proceedings of the 11th Nordic Conference on Human-Computer Interaction: Shaping Experiences, Shaping Society, 1–5. https://doi.org/10.1145/3419249.3420176
    (open access version) Schiavo, G., Leonardi, C., & Zancanaro, M. (2020). Values and Practices behind Collaborative Childcare in Knowledge-based Organizations. Technology Innovation Management Review, 10(5), 41–50. https://doi.org/10.22215/timreview/1355
    Rutta, C. B., Schiavo, G., Zancanaro, M., & Rubegni, E. (2020). Collaborative Comic-Based Digital Storytelling With Primary School Children. In Proceedings of Interaction Design for Children IDC’20. https://doi.org/10.1145/3311927.3325331
    Gloder, A., Ducceschi, L., & Zancanaro, M. (2020). A Language-based Interface for Analysis of Digital Storytelling. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces https://doi.org/10.1145/3399715.3399859
    (open access version) Gallitto, G., Treccani, B., & Zancanaro, M. (2020). If when is better than if (and while might help): On the importance of influencing mental models in EUD (a pilot study). In Proceedings of EMPATHY Workshop at AVI'2020
    (pre-print version) Beretta, A., Lepri, B., & Zancanaro, M. (2019). Following Wrong Suggestions: Self-blame in Human and Computer Scenarios. In Proceedings of INTERACT 2019. Cyprus. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-29387-1_31
    (pre-print version) Zancanaro, M., Stock, O., Schiavo, G., Cappelletti, A., Gehrmann, S., Canetti, D., … Weiss, P. L. (Tamar). (2019). Evaluating an automated mediator for joint narratives in a conflict situation. Behaviour & Information Technology, 1–16. https://doi.org/10.1080/0144929X.2019.1637940
    Schiavo, G., Villafiorita, A., & Zancanaro, M. (2019). (Non-)Participation in deliberation at work: A case study of online participative decision-making. New Technology, Work and Employment, 34(1), 37–58. https://doi.org/10.1111/ntwe.12127
    Mencarini, E., Rapp, A., Tirabeni, L., & Zancanaro, M. (2019). Designing Wearable Systems for Sports: A Review of Trends and Opportunities in Human–Computer Interaction. IEEE Transactions on Human-Machine Systems, 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1109/THMS.2019.2919702
    Mencarini, E., Leonardi, C., Cappelletti, A., Giovanelli, D., De Angeli, A., & Zancanaro, M. (2019). Co-designing wearable devices for sports: The case study of sport climbing. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 124, 26–43. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhcs.2018.10.005
    Leonardi, C., Schiavo, G., & Zancanaro, M. (2019). Sharing the Office, Sharing the Care? Designing for Digitally-mediated Collaborative Childcare in the Workplace. In Proceedings of Communities and Technologies C&T 2019 https://doi.org/10.1145/3328320.3328385
    Rutta, C. B., Schiavo, G., & Zancanaro, M. (2019). Comic-based Digital Storytelling for Self-expression: An Exploratory Case-Study with Migrants. In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Communities & Technologies - C&T2019. https://doi.org/10.1145/3328320.3328400
    Rutta, C. B., Zancanaro, M., Schiavo, G., & & Rubegni, E. (2019). Comic-based Digital Storytelling with Primary School Children. In Proceedings of ACM Interaction Design and Children (IDC) Boise. Idaho https://doi.org/10.1145/3311927.3325331



As a joint initiative of the Department of Psychology and Cognitive Science at the University of Trento and the Center for Information and Communication Technology of Fondazione Bruno Kessler, the lab collaborates with several FBK groups and in particular with the Smart Cities & Communities area.



    Massimo Zancanaro - Univ. of Trento & FBK
    Remo Job - Univ. of Trento
    Gianluca Schiavo - FBK
    Other participants:
    Nicola De Pisapia - Univ. of Trento
    Barbara Treccani - Univ. of Trento
    PhD students:
    Irene Laudanna - Univ. of Trento & FBK
    Margherita Andrao - Univ. of Trento & FBK
    Former PhD students and collaborators:
    Carolina Rutta
    Andrea Beretta
    Luca Ducceschi