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The ACM Conference on Human Information Interaction and Retrieval (CHIIR) seeks submissions for its upcoming conference, which will be held in Canberra Australia, and online as necessary, from March 15-19 2021. That is a little less than two weeks prior to iConference 2021, which takes place March 28-31 in Beijing, China.
CHIIR is a multi-disciplinary research meeting. In addition to studies of interactive systems, information interaction, and retrieval, the conference encourages submissions on related topics such as human-human information interaction, novel interaction paradigms, new evaluation methods, and related research in a range of communities such as sociology, ethnography, psychology, and human-computer interaction.
Papers, workshops and tutorial submissions are due Oct. 6, with other deadlines thereafter. Visit website for more information.
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville has named Diane Kelly its new vice provost for faculty affairs, effective August 1.
Since 2016, Kelly has served as a professor and director of Tennessee’s School of Information Sciences, an iSchools member at the iCaucus level. During that time, she has led the school to significant achievements, including a 110 percent enrollment increase in the Master of Science in information sciences and the creation of a new bachelor’s degree in information sciences.
Kelly is currently chair-elect of the iSchools organization and will begin her term as iSchools chair in 2022.
According to the Tennessee announcement, as vice provost Kelly will take a leading role in operationalizing the university’s commitment to recruiting, supporting, and retaining diverse faculty, and she will work closely with the Commission for Women, the Commission for Blacks, the Commission for LGBT People, and the Council for Diversity and Interculturalism.
Visit the Tennessee website to read the full announcement.
The School of Library and Information Science at the University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill has announced the following funding grants:
Assistant Professor Maggie Melo has been awarded funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study how the physical and affective characteristics of makerspaces encourage or inhibit participation by students from marginalized communities.
The NSF CAREER award will provide more than $715,000 in funding over five years to support the project, titled “Equity in the Making: Investigating Spatial Arrangements of Makerspaces and Their Impact on Diverse User Populations.” Learn more
Assistant Professor Sayamindu Dasgupta, has been awarded funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a two-year project aimed at fostering data literacies in middle-school and high-school-aged children.
The $175,000 grant is part of the NSF’s Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Research Initiation Initiative (CRII). Learn more
Associate Professor Mohammad Hossein Jarrahi has been awarded funding from the NC Policy Collaboratory for a project that will document the impact of COVID-19 on gig workers and their ability to work independently.
The project aims to examine how the skills used for location-based gig work can translate into the skills needed for online digital work and to develop educational materials that can help workers make the transition. The project’s findings will also help identify the necessary design features for digital platforms that could help facilitate the process. Learn more
Visit the UNC iSchool news department for additional news on faculty projects and social issues.
The ARMA International Educational Foundation is preparing Volume 2 of its Peer Reviewed Journal devoted to independent research on topics related to information and records management. The Foundation now seeks cited research articles related to the theme information management and records in the age of crisis management for inclusion in the Journal.
The Foundation welcomes articles from information management professionals and practitioners, students, professors, and researchers. The deadline for abstract submission is Aug. 15. See the Journal press release for complete submission details.
iConference 2021 has opened for submissions on the secure ConfTool submissions site. iConference presenters and participants will have the option of taking part face-to-face or virtually, so anyone can take part regardless of potential travel or budget restrictions. With these potential barriers cleared, everyone is encouraged to begin work on submissions.
The physical portion of iConference 2021 will take place March 28-31 in Beijing, China. The virtual portion will take place in the preceding weeks. The event is presented by the iSchools organization and hosted by the iSchool at Renmin University of China. The conference theme is Diversity | Divergence | Dialogue. All information scholars, researchers, and practitioners are encouraged to make submissions; affiliation with the iSchools is not required in order to submit.
As always, the iConference will present exceptional peer-reviewed research in the form of Full- and Short-Research Papers and Posters, as well as thought-provoking Workshops and Sessions for Interaction and Engagement. Also returning in 2021 are the Doctoral Colloquium and Early Career Colloquium, as well as a Student Symposium for undergraduate and master’s students.
New this year is a special track for Virtual Interactive Sessions, which will be conducted entirely online, as well as an Archival Education track and a special track for Chinese Papers.
Full details on how to take advantage of the conference’s hybrid live/virtual format will be explained in fall. For now, submitters to affected tracks will express their preference for face-to-face or remote participation. This information is being gathered purely for planning purposes and is non-binding.
The organizers of iConference 2021 have produced this updated Submissions Call, and everyone is encouraged to share the Call with friends and colleagues throughout the information community.
The iSchools organization and 2021 host Renmin University are pleased to announce that next year’s iConference will feature both in-person and virtual participation options. This means authors and applicants can make submissions secure in the knowledge that they will be able to present accepted work and participate in the conference, regardless of any future travel or budget uncertainty. iConference 2021 will begin accepting submissions in late June, and more detail can be found in the updated Call for Participation.
The live, in-person portion of iConference 2021 will take place March 28-31 in Beijing, China. Hosted by Renmin University, the 2021 conference theme is Diversity, Divergence, Dialogue. The virtual portion of iConference 2021 will take place in the weeks leading up to the Beijing event. The live and virtual participation options and rates will be fully explained in November 2020, when submission decisions are announced and conference registration opens.
iConference 2021 opens for submissions in late June. During the submission upload process, papers and posters authors will indicate a preference for face-to-face or virtual presentation. Similarly, applicants for our Doctoral Colloquium, Early Career Colloquium and Student Symposium will express their preference for face-to-face or remote meetings. Please note that these choices are not binding; the information is being gathered purely to help the organizers prepare suitable options for everyone.
In addition, iConference 2021 has introduced a new track called Virtual Interactive Sessions. This track is for sessions that will be conducted entirely online. The organizers invite creative submissions that take full advantage of remote presentation and participation technologies.
The iSchools organization is pleased to make this combined in-person and virtual format available for its 16th annual iConference. In a time of travel and budget uncertainty, the iSchools and Renmin hosts believe the new hybrid format is the best way to facilitate the broadest participation by information scholars worldwide.
Full details on iConference tracks and submissions can be found on the iConference 2021 website.
The iSchools Organization has released the following Statement on Injustice and Racism:
“We are angered and saddened by the senseless and horrific murder of George Floyd and the killings of Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery. Over the past two months, the pandemic has laid bare the economic and health disparities in society and disparate impact it is having on our minority communities, particularly African Americans. Many members of our University and College communities have witnessed or have been directly impacted by hateful and racially motivated incidents. Know that we stand with you and will join those groups dedicated to fighting racism and to show that Black lives matter.
“We must accept and acknowledge the role of our institutions in upholding an unjust system of racism and discrimination of Black, indigenous, and people of color. We must teach our students of the history of racism and discrimination in the Information Sciences and how it still persists. But we must do more.
“iSchools have a special role to play in the fight against racism and injustice given our focus on addressing systemic societal problems and bringing about change through the power of knowledge and information. As a network of academic institutions deeply committed to the principles of diversity, inclusion, and openness, this is a call to action.
“We as iSchools must find ways to apply our discipline to address both the overt and the insidious inequities and injustices that persist in our institutions and in our society. We pledge to increase the visibility and voice of people of color. We must protect and support scholars who engage in controversial topics and who speak out for social justice. We recommit ourselves to increasing the diversity and inclusion of students, faculty, staff, and leadership in the field as well as fighting for increased diversity in the information and knowledge industries.
“All members of the iSchools organization welcome opportunities to listen, learn, and discuss how to be part of that change.”
The iSchools Statement on Injustice and Racism was drafted by representatives of the Organization’s North American Region and approved by the Organization’s international Board of Directors.
The following supporting resources are provided by the North American regional representatives:
Understanding and Addressing White Privilege
Understanding Police Violence and Mass Incarceration
Anti-Racism Resources for Teaching
Opportunities to Take Action and Engage in Discussion
Suggested Readings from iSchool Faculty and Staff
Other Collections of Resources
At the recent conclusion of iConference 2020 the iSchools board of directors approved the applications of six institutions spanning the organization's Asia-Pacific, North American and European regions. With these additions, the iSchools organization now numbers 115 institutions dedicated to advancing the information field worldwide.
Joining at the prestigious iCaucus membership level is the Rochester Institute of Technology School of Information. Located in Rochester, NY, USA, the school is headed by Department Chair Stephen J. Zilora. It has 100 students in its doctoral program, as well as 200 master’s students and 450 bachelor’s students.
Two schools join at the Basic membership level. The George Mason University Department of Information Sciences & Technology is located in Fairfax, VA, USA, and is headed by Prof. Andre Manitius. The Nankai University Department of Information Resources Management, Business School is in Tianjin, China, and headed by Vice Dean Yuelin Li.
Three schools were admitted as Associates. This category is for schools that are new or may not yet meet the requirements for other levels. The Louisiana State University School of Library & Information Science is in Baton Rouge, LA, USA, and headed by Dr. Carol Barry. Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield Business School is headed by Prof. Robert Wilson and located in Sheffield, UK. The Soochow University Department of Archives and e-Government is headed by Dr. Bi Jianxin and located in SuZhou (Soochow), China.
Visit the iSchools membership section for more on these and other schools in our worldwide membership, as well as instructions on how to apply.
Springer LNCS has announced that the papers proceedings for the recently concluded iConference 2020 are now available to the public. Scholars who were not able to participate in the conference can now preview and purchase the Full Research Papers and Short Research Papers proceedings on Springer LNCS.
iConference 2020 took place March 23 – 27 in an all virtual format, made necessary by the coronavirus pandemic. More than 390 scholars and researchers took part.
In addition to the papers proceedings on Springer, the iConference 2020 posters proceedings and Visions papers are available in the open access IDEALS repository.
The next event in the iConference series is iConference 2021, which takes place March 23 – 26, 2021 in Beijing, China. iConference 2021 is presented by the iSchools and hosted by the Renmin University School of Information Resource Management. Watch for the 2021 Call for Participation, coming in May of this year.
According to an article published by the University of Maryland College of Information Studies, the current COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted and intensified disparities in access to information and health disparities between various populations. One of the core factors underlying these health disparities are the varying degrees of accessibility of health information for various populations. Accessibility encompasses both physical and intellectual accessibility. While physical accessibility refers to whether information is physically obtainable, intellectual accessibility refers to whether information is understandable.
Information and information professionals (such as librarians) are instrumental in ensuring that every individual has access to the resources and opportunities that will enable them to optimize their ability to live a long and healthy life. Many different types of information-related factors influence this ability, including an individual’s awareness of, and access to, trustworthy health information; their awareness of, and their ability to articulate, their health-related information needs; their health literacy levels (which encompasses their ability to obtain, understand, and act on health information); and the strategies they use to seek out, evaluate, and benefit from health information.
All of these factors influence the individual’s potential and actual health outcomes. Fortunately, these factors can be influenced by information professionals, who have both an opportunity and a responsibility to help to shape these factors in such a way that they optimize each individual’s capability to be healthy and to flourish in all facets of their lives.
One of the central institutions serving the information needs of all populations – libraries – are facing the need to close in unprecedented numbers due to the risks posed by COVID-19. However, many public, academic, and K-12 school librarians are finding ways for their libraries to continue to serve the public.
Libraries are continuing to offer electronic access to their digital resources, and many are still offering internet access that people (some of whom would otherwise have no internet access) can use from outside the library. Additionally, numerous libraries are collecting and curating collections of COVID-19 resources on their websites.
Read the full story on the University of Maryland iSchool website, including examples of action taken by libraries across the US.
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