Costa Rica, Pura Vida!

5 min readFeb 28, 2024

ICMI and CSCW Take Center Stage in Costa Rica in November 2024

Banner with the text: "Costa Rica, Pura Vida! ICMI and CSCW Take Center Stage in Costa Rica in Nov 2024"

Costa Rica, a land of peace, happiness, and biodiversity located in Central America, is set to become an epicenter for technology and collaboration research this November of 2024. Hosting two back-to-back SIGCHI conferences:

Costa Rica promises an extraordinary experience that merges cutting-edge research with the allure of its tropical paradise. In this post, we explore why attending these conferences in Costa Rica is not just a professional and academic opportunity but a chance to safely immerse yourself in this Central American country’s natural wonders and warm hospitality. But it also constitutes a beautiful way to create or solidify cooperation and understanding between the Global North and Latin American research. While part of the same global community, these research perspectives might differ. Having these conferences for the first time in a Latin American country has the potential to open everyone’s view to a world of innovative and relevant opportunities.

Map of San José showing a distance of 8 kilometers from the Juan Santamaría International Airport to the CSCW 2024 venue , and a distance of 16 kilometers to the ICMI 2024 venue.

Kicking off the month of November, the ICMI conference will unfold at the Crowne Plaza San José Conference Center from November 4th to 8th, 2024. This conference is a forum that combines multimodal artificial intelligence (AI) and social interaction research. Furthermore, the theme of this year’s ICMI conference revolves around “Equitability and environmental sustainability in multimodal interaction technologies.”

Following ICMI, the CSCW conference will take center stage at the Costa Rica Convention Center from November 9th to 13th, 2024. This venue, known for its world-class facilities, is tailor-made for the collaborative and cooperative spirit of the CSCW conference. CSCW is an excellent forum for research in designing and using technologies that affect groups, organizations, communities, and networks. Furthermore, CSCW explores the technical, social, material, and theoretical challenges of designing technology to support collaborative work and life activities.

Being close to San Jose, participants of both conferences can explore the city’s historical charm by visiting the National Theater or strolling through the bustling Mercado Central, a lively market where local vendors showcase an array of crafts, fresh produce, and traditional Costa Rican cuisine. Furthermore, for an educational and enriching experience, the Jade Museum and the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum provide insights into the country’s indigenous history and artistic heritage.

Costa Rica is not just a conference destination; it’s a nation eager to embrace the future of technology and research. The Costa Rican people’s warm welcome and commitment to sustainability and innovation create an atmosphere appropriate for groundbreaking discussions and collaborations.

Hosting these prestigious SIGCHI conferences is an excellent opportunity for Costa Rica and a catalyst for positive change and technology development in the Latin American region. The events will stimulate knowledge exchange, foster collaborations, and encourage the growth of the local and regional communities. Our efforts to include regional workshops and experiences during the conferences will mutually benefit both participants of the events and the local HCI-related communities.

In November 2024, as we engage in discussions and presentations and forge new connections at the ICMI and CSCW conferences in Costa Rica, you’ll also have the chance to explore a country that seamlessly merges sustainability with tropical beauty. Join us on this unforgettable journey where the spirit of collaboration meets the wonders of nature.

A little information about Costa Rica

Costa Rica has a blend of natural beauty and warm hospitality. Renowned for its lush rainforests, pristine beaches, and diverse ecosystems, Costa Rica offers a unique setting that transcends the traditional conference experience, offering 6% of the natural biodiversity in the world in such a small territory.

Costa Rica’s commitment to sustainability aligns seamlessly with the progressive themes of the SIGCHI conferences. In a remarkable testament to its environmental stewardship, Costa Rica has emerged as a global leader in sustainable energy practices, with 99.78% of the energy output for the entire nation in 2020 coming from renewable sources.

The warmth of the Costa Rican people, known for their friendliness and “Pura Vida” lifestyle, adds an inviting touch to its atmosphere. Around this topic, one unique aspect distinguishing Costa Rica on the global stage is its commitment to peace and disarmament. Costa Rica stands as one of the few countries in the world without a standing army since 1949.

Beyond its natural beauty, Costa Rica boasts a robust education and health system, reflecting its commitment to well-being and knowledge. With a literacy rate exceeding 97%, Costa Rica strongly emphasizes education, with the benefit that many locals are bilingual, fostering a welcoming environment. Furthermore, Costa Rica also takes pride in its universal healthcare system, which is regarded as one of the best in Latin America.

Despite initial misinformation about the COVID-19 situation in Costa Rica, the country’s proactive efforts to dispel myths surrounding vaccination and widespread acceptance among the population have resulted in a commendable vaccination rate. According to Johns Hopkins data, 90.4% of the Costa Rican population has received at least one vaccine dose, surpassing vaccination rates in the United States (81.8%) and the United Kingdom (79.2%). This fact places Costa Rica in a favorable position regarding pandemic management, reflecting the effectiveness of the country’s vaccination campaign and the resilience of its healthcare system.

Participants will be delighted to discover Costa Rica’s captivating tourist attractions, easily accessible through convenient one-day tours, whether it’s a journey to the iconic Arenal Volcano, a visit to the mystical Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, or a relaxing day at Manuel Antonio National Park with its pristine beaches and diverse wildlife.

Costa Rica is the perfect destination for those seeking a conference experience that goes beyond the ordinary. It’s a country where the convergence of technology and nature creates a truly transformative experience, hopefully leaving conference participants with lasting memories and a renewed appreciation for the interconnectedness of innovation and the environment.

Picture of a Costa Rican Sloth hanging from a tree

We look forward to seeing you in Costa Rica!




ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work.