CIIR Talk Series: Carsten Eickhoff

Speaker: Carsten Eickhoff, University of Tübingen

Title: Uncertainty in Information Retrieval?

Date: Friday, February 17, 2023 - 1:30 - 2:30 PM EST (North American Eastern Standard Time) via Zoom. On campus attendees will gather in CS 203 to view the presentation. Refreshments provided.

Abstract: Search engines have become our main gateway to massive globally distributed repositories of human knowledge and cultural artifacts. Like all software systems, they may encode (purposefully or incidentally) the beliefs and biases of those who design and maintain them. To aggravate the situation, most modern search engines are trained on the basis of large-scale historic interaction patterns that may introduce additional unintentional (and difficult to detect) system behavior. In this talk, we will discuss the need for uncertainty estimation techniques in IR that can help searchers and search engineers uncover hidden biases as well as general system mechanics. I will showcase efficient uncertainty modeling techniques and their downstream applications to search result fairness and debiasing.

Bio: Carsten Eickhoff is a Professor of E-Health and Computer Science at the University of Tübingen, where his lab specializes in the development of information retrieval and natural language processing techniques with the goal of improving patient safety, individual health, and quality of medical care. Prior to joining Tübingen, he was the Manning Assistant Professor of Medical and Computer Science at Brown University. He received degrees from the University of Edinburgh and TU Delft, and was a postdoctoral fellow at ETH Zurich and Harvard University. Carsten has authored more than 100 articles in computer science conferences (e.g., ICLR, ACL, SIGIR, WWW, KDD) and clinical journals (e.g., Nature Digital Medicine, The Lancet - Respiratory Medicine, Radiology, European Heart Journal). His research has been supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation, NSF, DARPA, IARPA, Google, Amazon, Microsoft and others. Aside from his academic endeavors, he is a founder and board member of several deep technology startups in the health sector that strive to translate technological innovation to improved safety and quality of life for patients.