Short Bio

Yun Huang is an associate professor at the School of Information Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She co-directs the SALT lab, focusing on social computing systems research. Before joining iSchool, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow of the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. Yun Huang received both her master's degree and doctorate from the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences (ICS) at UC Irvine . She earned her bachelor's degree from the Department of Computer Science and Technology at Tsinghua University, Beijing, China.

Her research is sponsored by Google, National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), National Science Foundation and Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Research Interests

Prof. Huang’s research examines new context-driven ways of designing mobile social crowdsourcing systems. She approaches this issue using the following research methods: running empirical studies, such as surveys or interviews informed by social psychological theories, with the intent to understand what factors affect crowdsourcing systems and how they impact different stakeholders to use and to contribute to crowdsourcing systems (especially mobile crowdsourcing systems); designing, developing and releasing crowdsourcing systems that enable people’s ubiquitous accessibility to various services, ideas and information; designing and running controlled experiments, conducting field trials or analyzing system logs to understand people’s uses of her crowdsourcing systems. In a nutshell, her research involves both deductive and inductive reasoning processes, and she uses the triangulation approach to analyze people’s behavior both qualitatively and quantitatively.

To date, she has been working on and has released several systems that tap into the different fields of public services. These systems are driven by emerging needs and trending issues. For example, how to utilize open government data or service data from public service providers, such as transit service data or open crime data, or how to enable transitioning of library service from collection-driven approach to be community-driven focus. Building her own systems, she has the opportunity to experience real-world challenges, e.g. balancing the needs of different stakeholders, and gains hands-on experiences of designing a system from scratch and releasing it to the public. Having full control of the systems, she is able to examine different context and running randomized field experiments to assess the casual relationship between different design approaches and user behaviors.

Specific areas of her interests include Human Computer Interaction, Mobile Applications and Systems, Social Media and Social Networking, Crowdsourcing Systems, Inclusive Web and Human-AI Interaction.


Please find her publications from here.


Please find her students from here.


  • (08/22-07/25) Institute of Museum and Library Services Early CAREER Research Development Award: “Empowering Libraries with Conversational AI”, total $399,996. Single PI: Yun Huang.
  • (09/21-09/24) National Science Foundation "Collaborative Research: Advancing STEM Online Learning by Augmenting Accessibility with Explanatory Captions and AI", total $849,990, Lead PI: Yun Huang; Co-PIs: Lawrence Angrave, Meng Jiang,Qi Wang.
  • (07/21-06/23) National Science Foundation "Collaborative Research: EAGER: SaTC: EDU: Teach High School Students about Cybersecurity and AI Ethics via Empathy-Driven Hands-On Projects", total $300,300 Lead PI: Yang Wang; Co-PIs: Tom Yeh,Pilyoung Kim,Yun Huang.
  • (07/18-06/21) National Leadership Grants for Libraries, Enabling Accessibility and Linking Digital Media Collections in Academic Libraries, $249,908, PI, Yun Huang. Co-PIs: Jian Qin, Xiaozhong Liu.
  • (10/15-09/18) National Leadership Grants for Libraries, Community as Collection, $281,263, PI, Yun Huang. Co-PI, R. David Lankes, Jian Qin. Out of total 155 applications, 15 projects were awarded (less than 10% award rate).
  • (08/15-09/16) Google Research Award, 14% award rate (805 proposals, 113 projects were funded and 27% of the funding awarded to universities outside the U.S), $38,514, PI, Yun Huang.
  • (06/15-present) Syracuse University's Information Technology Services (ITS), $3,600, PI, Yun Huang.
  • (06/15-present) SU ADVANCE Cross-Sector/Interdisciplinary Opportunity Grants, $10,000, PI, Yun Huang.
  • (09/15-08/16) REU supplements National Science Foundation IIS 1464312, $16,000, Yun Huang.
  • (09/15-08/16) National Science Foundation IIS 1464312, CRII: CHS: Mobile Crowdsourcing System for Public Safety, Continuing Grant, currently received full budget of the first year for $100,255, PI, Yun Huang.
  • (09/13-08/18) National Institute for Disability Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) ICWC, DRRP on Inclusive Cloud and Web Computing, Syracuse University Subcontract, total $866,000 for 5 years. PI, Yang Wang, Co-PI, Yun Huang.
  • Contact

    Room 5135, 614 E Daniel St.
    School of Information Sciences,
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,
    Office Phone:(217) 244-0418
    Email: yunhuang AT