Animal-Centered Computing

The aim of the summer school is to introduce and engage the students in the emerging discipline of animal-centered computing, which focuses on many emerging areas where animals are placed at the center of computing system design, and development.

Admission information


Place of study: ETU "LETI"

Language: English 


Summer School online: 20 July, 2020

Outcome: ETU "LETI" certificate , online-2 ECTS


We invite people with the following background to apply:

  1. Students who have finished at least one year of undergraduate studies in Biology, Zoology, Veterinary Science or a related discipline.
  2. Students who have finished at least one year of undergraduate studies in Computer Science, Software Engineering, Information Systems, Data Science, Electrical Engineering or related disciplines. These students are expected to have a familiarity with programming in Python.  Background in AI, Data Science and/or ML techniques is a strong advantage.
  3. Anyone with at least 1 year of practical experience in working with animals and/or technologies for animals.



  1. July 12, 2020


Apply Now


To apply for the summer school, send an email to the "LETI" International Students Office at, cc-ing also with the following documents:

Short CV
1 page expression of interest explaining why you are interested in the summer school and including a short description of your background and its relevance to the summer school.
1 page description of one profound experience that shaped your interest in animals.




09:30 - 10:00  Opening

10:00 - 11:00 Robert Young: Introduction to Animal Behavior

11:00 - 11:30 Student Orientation

11:30 - 13:00 Group meeting (Introductions and start)

15:00 - 17:30 Technical Lab I

19:00 - 20:00 Oren Forkosh: Complex systems, how simple and local rules of interaction allow animals to solve complicated problems such as foraging for food,                                                   finding mates, or evading predators?

10:00 - 12:30 Eleonora Nannoni: Animal Welfare

13:00 - 15:00 Group meetings with experts

19:00 - 20:30 Robert Young: Measuring Animal Behavior

10:00 - 11:00 Oren Forkosh: Being different, personality and the advantages (and disadvantages) of being different, about group synergy, cooperation, and competition.

11:00 - 12:30 Ivan Tyukin: Introduction to AI

15:00 - 17:30 Technical Lab II

19:00 - 20:30 Robert Young: Introduction to Animal Cognition

10:00 - 11:30 Eyal Misha: From farmer to cow whisperer, Monitoring 5 freedoms using sensors In the dairy industry.

13:00 - 14:30 Admela Jukan: Technologies for Farm Animals

19:00 - 20:30 Group work with experts

10:00 - 11:00 Oren Forkosh: Social interactions, top-down approaches to looking at behavior: from the group to the individual.

12:00 - 13:30 Evgenia Novikova: Dark Sides of Wearable IoT Devices

15:00 - 17:30 Technical Lab III

19:00 - 20:30 Orit Hirsch-Matsioulas: Human-Animal Relationship

10:00 - 11:30 Daniel Metcalfe: Multispecies Design

12:00 - 13:30 Clara Mancini: Animal-Computer Interaction

18:00 - 19:00 Alexandre Rossi: TBD

19:00 - 20:30 Patrick Shih: Animal-Computer Interaction

08:30 - 10:00 Group work with experts

10:00 - 11:30 Ivana Schork: Animal Welfare and Sleep

19:00 - 20:30 Human-Animal-Technology Tryad: Anna Zamansky, Daphna Golan-Shemesh and Tsippy Lotan.

10:00 - 12:00 Final Presentations of the Groups

12:00 - 12:30 Ехperts Meeting

12:30 - 13:00 Award Ceremony & Wrap up


About the program

The First International Summer School on Animal-Centered Computing (ACC) will introduce and engage students in the exciting new discipline that focuses on animals at the center of computing system design and development. The field as a whole brings together researchers and practitioners across computing, engineering, veterinary, and behavioral disciplines to promote synergistic interactions that advance hardware, software, and methodologies for technological systems that promote use by, and with, animals.

A partial list of focus areas for the ACC community includes:

Why is it worth participating?

  1. Be one of the first people to immerse in the new emerging field of animal-centered computing.
  2. Enjoy stimulating discussions and get feedback on your ideas from leading researchers in the fields of animal science and technology.
  3. Master state of the art tools in ml and data analytics.
  4. Develop your own ideas into a scientific paper to be submitted at a Seventh International Conference on Animal-Computer Interaction (10-12 November 2020, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom).
  5. Enjoy one of the most beautiful cities in the world in the most magical season.


Module 1 - Introduction to Animal Behavior and Cognition

Module 2 - Methods for objectively measuring behavior

Module 3 - Introduction to Animal Welfare and its assessment

Module 4 - Video&Image Data: ML tools for animal behavior analysis

Module 5 - IoT and Animal wearables

Module 6 - Topics in Designing for Animals




University of Haifa, Israel


University of Salford, Manchester, UK


Our lecturers

Orit Hirsch-Matsioulas

Anthropologist of Human-Animal Relations and Modern Greece

She is a co-founder of the Human-Animal Studies academic community in Israel (HASI) and a co-founder of the human-animal relations multi-disciplinary research group at Tel Aviv University. Her dissertation examined how human-canine relationships take part in constructing the socio-cultural categories of “belonging to a place”, “foreignness” and “otherness”, in Paros island (Greece) during the economic crisis. This study was funded by the Centre for the Study of European Politics and Society at Ben-Gurion University, as well as the Dean's Excellence Award. Since her Ph. D was achieved in 2019, Orit focuses on two anthropological researches: human-street cat relations and politics of belonging in the mixed city of Acre (Israel), and the effects of canine-human relations on home quarantine experiences in Israel, during the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak.


Admela Jukan 

Chair Professor in Communication Networks, TU Braunschwieg

Prior to that ,she was research faculty member at the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique (INRS), University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (UIUC) and Georgia Tech (GaTech). Admela received her degree (cum laude) in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the Technische Universitat Wien, the M.Sc. degree in Information Technologies from the Politecnico di Milano, Italy, and her Dipl. -Ing. degree from the Fakultet Elektrotehnike i Racunarstva (FER), in Zagreb, Croatia.

Since 2015, Prof. Jukan has been actively working in the combined domains of computer engineering and veterinary medicine, where together with her collaborators, she has been studying the suitability of smart computing and sensing systems that assume presence of networking, big data analytics, pervasive connectivity and computing, and, more recently, the artificial intelligence (AI) to serving the welfare needs of animals, be it domestic, farm, or wild animals. Her research group was recognized in a 2017 IEEE ComSoc Competition Communications Technology Changing the World, for ”Development of a Mobile Application for Animal Welfare” of IEEE Communication Society (2017). She is the director of the newly established lab on Animal-Cyber Systems (ACS), supported by VW Foundation, and established in collaboration with University of Veterinary Medicine in Hannover (Prof. Nicole Kemper). She has successfully integrated her research in computing and animal farming into her course on Information Technologies for Social Good (IT4Good). She has written seminal papers on the cross-roads between computing, sensing and animal welfare.


Clara Mancini

Senior Lecturer in Interaction Design, Open University’s School of Computing and Communications

Dr. Clara Mancini is the founder and head of the OU’s Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) Lab, and has led or supervised a range of ACI projects, including ubiquitous and ambient interfaces for mobility assistance and medical detection dogs, interactive enrichment for captive elephants, and wearable animal biotelemetry. Her ACI work has been published in the leading interaction design and ubiquitous computing venues, and she has lectured on ACI nationally and internationally. She set-up the ACI International Steering Committee and served as general chair for the ACI International Conference in 2016 and 2017, chairing again in 2020. Clara is interested in the design, methodological and ethical challenges and opportunities presented by ACI, and is committed to demonstrating its potential to contribute to animal and human wellbeing, social inclusion, interspecies cooperation and environmental restoration.


Daniel Metcalfe

Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel

Daniel is a designer, design researcher and senior lecturer at the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning at the Technion. His PhD, from the University of the Arts London, titled Multispecies Design, looked at design processes that respond to the needs of wild animals within built environments and design’s role in human-animal interactions.

Daniel divides his time between working as a designer and planner - introducing animal perspectives into landscape architecture projects, and the Technion where he teaches and researches topics of social design, nature-centred design, product-service systems, human-animal interactions and somatic design.


Eyal Misha

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Bologna

Specializing in applied research, adapting and proper utilization of automatic computerized systems, Primary research efforts focus on monitoring cow health and welfare through pedometer-based systems. Currency function as the R&D Applications Manager for ENGS and as Chief scientist of GOODOG; Service dog training and pet therapy Center.


Evgenia Novikova

Department of Information Systems, Saint Petersburg Electrotechnical University "LETI"

Evgenia Novikova is associate professor of Information Systems department at Saint Petersburg Electrotechnical University "LETI". Her research interests include security visual analytics, security and privacy risk assessment and malware analysis.


Alexandre Rossi

Alexandre Rossi Is a zootechnician and a Brazilian TV presenter, holds a degree in Zootechnics and a Masters in Psychology from USP. He specialized in Animal Behavior and gained work experience from the University of Queensland, Australia. He is in charge of 'Cão Cidadão' - company specializing in behavioral consultation and training at home, which also offers courses, lectures and workshops.

In addition to several published books, Alexandre Rossi accumulates on his resume works for the cinema, radio and television.


Patrick C. Shih

Assistant Professor, Department of Informatics Indiana University Bloomington

Dr. Shih is an Assistant Professor of Informatics in the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering at Indiana University Bloomington. He directs the Societal Computing Lab (SoCo Lab). He's a core faculty of the Health Informatics track, and he's also the Co-Director of the Animal Informatics MS/PhD track and the Animal-Computer Interaction BS Cognate/Minor programs. His research focuses on the study of sociotechnical systems and mechanisms to support health and wellbeing and reduce health disparity of marginalized and underserved populations. Specifically, his lab designs, prototypes, and deploys novel personal health informatics devices, interfaces, and platforms to support people with physical, developmental, and mental conditions. He also designs technologies to amplify human and animal capabilities in animal-assisted interventions and to improve animal welfare. The populations that Dr. Shih is actively studying include people living with HIV, people with epilepsy, adults with ASD, people with substance abuse, opossum rehabilitation, orangutan enrichment, and equine-assisted services.


About schools

About the «Animal-Centered Computing» education course

Winter schools 2020

Opening of winter schools 2020

Summer schools 2019

Opening of the summer schools 2019

Winter schools 2019

About the Department

The department is one of the leading departments in the field of applied theory and design of control systems based on modern information technologies in Russia. It is the base department of the Ministry of Education and Science in the areas of Automation and Control and Management in Technical Systems.

Department of Automation and Control Processes

Scientific and educational direction of the department:


Directions for the preparation of bachelors and masters in full-time and correspondence courses:


Bachelor's profile - Management and Informatics in Technical systems "

Master's program - "Management and Information technology"


Undergraduate Profile - “Information Systems and Technologies in business "Master's programs - "IT Project and Product Management"

- “System analytics”

The department has five main specialized educational laboratories in which disciplines are studied:

Following the results of the school, we plan to develop a master's program. 


Dmitrii Kaplun

Ph.D., Associate professor

program coordinator


AI&IoT and Interaction track:

Prof. David L. Roberts

Computer Science Department, North Carolina State University, US

Prof. Ivan Tyukin

Department of Automation and Control Processes, Saint Petersburg Electrotechnical University

Dr. Dmitrii Kaplun

Department of Automation and Control Processes, Saint Petersburg Electrotechnical University

Dr. Dirk van der Linden

Department of Computer Science, University of Bristol, UK

Dr. Anna Zamansky

Information Systems Department, University of Haifa, Israel

Animal science and welfare track:

Prof. Robert Young

School of Environment and Life Sciences, University of Salford, Manchester, UK

Dr. Oren Forkosh

Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

Dr. Ivana Schork

School of Environment and Life Sciences, University of Salford, Manchester, UK

Dr. Eleonora Nannoni

Department of Veterinary Medical Sciences, University of Bologna, Italy



International Students Office

Mon.-Fri.: 10:00-17:00 (admission 10:00-16:30)
+7 (812) 234-35-53