In the fields of human-computer interaction (HCI), digital youth has been a staple research topic analyzing youth practices in technology interests. In this presentation, I discuss my ethnographic work examining youth engagement in electronic sports (esports) particularly their learning practices. These ethnographies describe years of my participant observation work that was situated deep within esports communities of Starcraft II and League of Legends in the US and in Hong Kong. I present evidence of youth learnings in esports, but also raise questions concerning unpractised adults in these settings. I discuss a research gap in clarifying roles of teachers and parents supporting esports youth, and my on-going work in Hong Kong.


Dr Yong Ming Kow is a social computing scientist in the fields of human-computer interaction (user experience). His research focuses on studies of community practices around media design and development as informed by ethnography. In particular, he is investigating collaborative work and learning within research areas focusing on computer gaming, but also include civic resistance, and blockchain. Yong Ming has published in top HCI conferences and journals including CSCW and CHI, with two honorable mention awards. He is the associate editor for Mind, Culture, and Activity journal. He had served as a Paper Co-chair at the iConference, the Chinese CHI, and Chinese DiGRA conferences. He is currently an Assistant Professor at the School of Creative Media at City University of Hong Kong. He obtained his PhD from the University of California, Irvine.

Dr. Wen was the recipient of the 2016 Warren W. Yee Memorial Fellowship, and the 2014 Carl Storm Fellowship. He won the first place in the 3MT PhD Thesis Competition at IEEE International Conference on Multimedia and Expo (ICME) in 2018. He was in the list of UIUC Teachers Ranked as Excellent. He was nominated for the Harold L. Olesen Award for teaching in 2013. He received Best Research Award in the Midwest Research Summit 2018, and the Best Talk Award at the CSL Student Conference 2018. He also received the 2012 Professional Engineers Board (PEB) Gold Medal, and the EEE Department Excellence Award from NTU. His work was awarded 10% Best Paper in the IEEE International Conference on Image Processing (ICIP) in 2014.