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iConference 2006 Summary

2006 Contents

Quick Links
By the Numbers

Keynote Speakers


2006 Quick Links

Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
Date: October 15 to 17, 2006
Host: University of Michigan School of Information
Official Proceedings:
Printed Conference Brochure and Schedule: Click here

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2006 By the Numbers

Total Registered Participants: 317 (184 faculty/staff; 133 student)

Pre-Conference Sessions: 2 Conference Sessions: 11

Doctoral Colloquium Participants: TK

Rates (USD):

  • Standard Early: $250 / Standard Regular: $315
  • Student Early: $50 / Student Regular: $60

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2006 Organizers

Hosting Deans: C. Olivia Frost (post June 1); John L. King (pre June 1)
Conference Chair: Thomas Finholt
Program Chair: Gary M. Olson
Doctoral Colloquium: Judith S. Olson; Kevin Crowston; Gloria Mark
Registration/Publicity: Frank DeSanto; Jay Jackson
: Shelley MacMillan
Local Arrangements: Barbara Smith
Campus Tours: Andrea Wiggins; Anatole Senkevitch, Jr.
Conference Management: U-M Conference Management Services
iSchool Insight Award Tile: Motawi Tileworks

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2006 Keynote Speakers

John Seely Brown

Plenary Speaker, Sunday, October 15th

John Seely Brown was director of the Xerox Palo Alto Re- search Center (PARC) until June 2000 — a position he held for 12 years — as well as chief scientist of Xerox Corp. until April 2002.

While head of PARC, Brown expanded the role of corporate research to include such topics as organizational learning, complex adaptive systems, micro electrical mechanical systems, and nanotechnology. He is a visiting scholar at the Annenberg Center and Annenberg School of Communication at the University of Southern California.

Brown, or as he is often called, “JSB,” is a member of the National Academy of Education, a fellow of the American Asso- ciation for Artificial Intelligence and of the American Associa- tion for the Advancement of Science, and a trustee of Brown University and the MacArthur Foundation.

He is widely published and was awarded the McKinsey Award by the “Harvard Business Review” in 1991 for his article, “Research That Reinvents the Corporation,” and again in 2002 for his article (with John Hagel), “Your Next IT Strategy.”

In 1997, JSB published the book, “Seeing Differently: Insights on Innovation” (Harvard Business Review Books). He co-au- thored (with Paul Duguid) the acclaimed book, “The Social Life of Information” (HBS Press, 2000). His latest book, “The Only Sustainable Edge: Why Business Strategy Depends on Productive Friction and Dynamic Specialization,” written with John Hagel, was published in spring 2005 by Harvard Busi- ness School Press.

Chris Anderson

Plenary Speaker, Monday, October 16th
Chris Anderson is editor-in-chief of “Wired” magazine, a position he took in 2001. Since then he has led the magazine to five National Magazine Award nominations, winning the prestigious top prize for General Excellence in 2005, a year in which he was also named Editor of the Year by “AdAge” magazine.

He is the author of the “New York Times” best seller, “The Long Tail,” which is based on an influential 2004 ar- ticle published in “Wired,” and runs a blog on the subject at

The theory of the Long Tail is that our culture and economy is increasingly shifting away from a focus on a relatively small number of “hits” (mainstream products and markets) at the head of the demand curve and toward a huge number of niches in the tail. As the costs of production and distribution fall, especially online, there is now less need to lump products and consumers into one-size- fits-all containers. In an era without the constraints of physical shelf space and other bottlenecks of distribution, narrowly-targeted goods and services can be as economically attractive as mainstream fare.

One example of this is the theory’s prediction that demand for products not available in traditional bricks and mortar stores is potentially as big as for those that are. But the same is true for video not available on broadcast TV on any given day, and songs not played on radio. In other words, the potential ag- gregate size of the many small markets in goods that don’t individually sell well enough for traditional retail and broadcast distribution may someday rival that of the existing large market in goods that do cross that economic bar.

Previously, Anderson was at “The Economist,” where he served as U.S. business editor, Asia business editor (based in Hong Kong), and technology editor. He started the magazine’s Internet coverage in 1994 and directed its initial Web strategy. Anderson’s media career began at the two premier science journals, “Nature” and “Science,” where he served in several editorial capacities.

Prior to that he worked as a researcher at Los Alamos National Laboratory’s meson physics facility and served as research assistant to the chief scientist of the Department of Transportation. He holds a Bachelor of Science in physics from George Washington University and he studied quantum mechanics and science journalism at the University of California at Berkeley.

Anderson is an officer of the Young Presidents’ Association and a regular speaker and participant at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Christine L. Borgman

Plenary Speaker, Tuesday, October 17th

Christine L. Borgman is professor and Presidential Chair in In- formation Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is a co-principal investigator for the Center for Embedded Networked Sensing, and for two of its projects: CENSEI, for research on data management and policy, and Women@ CENS, all funded by the National Sci- ence Foundation. From 1999-2005 she also led the education and evalu- ation team of the Alexandria Digital Earth Prototype Project.

Borgman’s research interests and teaching areas include digital libraries, information retrieval, electronic publishing, information-seeking behavior, scientific data use and policy, scholarly communication, bibliometrics, and information technology policy. Her book, “From Gutenberg to the Global Information Infrastructure: Access to Informa- tion in a Networked World” (MIT Press, 2000), won the Best Information Science Book of the Year Award from the Ameri- can Society for Information Science & Technology. Her next book, “Scholarship in the Digital Age: Information, Infrastruc- ture, and the Internet,” will be published by MIT Press in 2007.

Professional activities include memberships on the U.S. Na- tional Committee on Data for Science and Technology and the Advisory Board to the Electronic Privacy Information Center. Prior service included membership on the Study Committee on Internet Navigation and the Domain Name System (National Academies); the Advisory Committee to the Computer, Infor- mation Sciences, and Engineering Directorate of the National Science Foundation; the Board of Directors of the Council on Library and Information Resources; and the International Advisory Board to the Soros Foundation Open Society Institute Regional Library Program. She is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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2006 Sponsors

Dell, Inc.

Google, Inc.

Microsoft Corp.

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