Bulletin, February/March 2014
2013 Annual Meeting Coverage
In the December/January issue of the Bulletin of the Association for Information Science and Technology, we provided a brief news report of our 76th Annual Meeting in Montreal. But the timing of both the meeting and this publication’s deadlines kept us from providing full photographic and text coverage of the fun, the substantive, the social and the ridiculous at the successful ASIS&T confab.
So join us throughout this issue of the Bulletin for a look at some of the work and fun that members and guests enjoyed in Montreal at the 2013 ASIS&T Annual Meeting. Following a photo montage from the meeting, you’ll find coverage of the ASIS&T Annual Awards presented at the conference and an article by Chirag Shah, winner of the ASIS&T James Cretsos Leadership Award. Also in this issue, other Annual Meeting coverage includes reports from many of the pre-conference workshops and seminars; the plenary session headlined by Jorge García; the Award of Merit acceptance speech delivered by Carol Kuhlthau; and an article by our 2013 Research Award recipient Susan Herring.
2013 ASIS&T Award Winners
One of the highlights of each year’s ASIS&T Annual Meeting is the presentation of the prestigious ASIS&T Annual Awards.
Award of Merit
Carol C. Kuhlthau, professor emerita in the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University, is the 2013 recipient of the ASIS&T Award of Merit, the highest honor presented by ASIS&T. The award goes to an individual who has made a noteworthy contribution to the field of information science, including the expression of new ideas, the creation of new devices, the development of better techniques and outstanding service to the profession.
Professor Kuhlthau is internationally recognized for her contributions to the study of information behavior. Her best-known work is her book Seeking Meaning: A Process Approach to Library and Information Services. In her rigorous research she observed student information seeking, developed a model of the information search process and then tested the model in several ways over several studies to validate and refine the model. This model has motivated widespread current research interest in the affective components of the information search process. Her life and work are models in several senses. Personally highly intelligent, judicious and modest, she has earned the highest respect from scholars and students in the field of information behavior as well as from practitioners. Through example, Carol Kuhlthau has taught many in the field how to do rigorous research, how to mentor and how to teach.
Watson Davis Award
ASIS&T’s Watson Davis Award recognizes the contributions of someone who has shown continuous dedicated service to ASIS&T. In 2013, the person who most effectively lives up to that ideal is Beata Panagopoulos.
Beata has given much to the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T). Looking at her list of contributions it is easy to ask, What hasn’t she done to support ASIS&T and its membership over the past 20 years? On the national level, she has been elected to the Board of Directors as Deputy Chapter Assembly Director and twice as the Chapter Assembly Director. In addition to her many ex-officio committee obligations, she has also served two terms on and chaired the Awards and Honors Committee, five terms on the Leadership Committee, one term on the Nominations Committee, one term on the Award of Merit Jury, and she chaired the Task Force on Chapter Structure and Activity. She has been a leader in the special interest arena by serving SIG/PUB as membership records coordinator, chair-elect and chair. She has made logistical contributions to Annual Meeting planning through the Leadership Development Committee and SIG/PUB. On the local level, she has been elected to nearly every chapter position for the award-winning New England Chapter, including program committee chair, co-chair/chair-elect, chair, past chair and treasurer. She published the chapter's membership directory, helped plan programs and contributed to the chapter newsletter with articles on chapter and national meetings. She has been active on the NEASIST program committee and chairs the Student Travel Award Committee. No surprise that she was honored as the 2013 NEASIST Chapter Member-of-the-Year.
However, Beata is more than the sum of her many volunteer accomplishments. She would be the first person to give a long list of people who are deserving of this award and any other ASIS&T award for that matter. Conversely, she would be the last person to nominate herself for any honor and that is what makes her truly exceptional.
Susan Herring, professor of information science and adjunct professor of linguistics at Indiana University, is the recipient of the 2013 ASIS&T Research Award. The documentation nominating Dr. Herring provides strong evidence of her extensive contributions to the field of computer-mediated communication (CMC), and she has also brought hundreds of researchers from different disciplines to CMC research. Her own work has theoretical, practical and methodological implications for the field. Theoretically, her research on the role of gender in online communication opens up a new area of inquiry related to CMC. Practically, Dr. Herring’s studies offer empirical results that not only support her theoretical arguments but also practical implications to facilitate computer-mediated communication. Methodologically, Dr. Herring advances content analysis and discourse analysis in the area.
The broad field of information science has always benefited from rubbing shoulders with allied fields and from the cross-fertilization of concepts and methods. Not only is Dr. Herring’s research creative and extremely productive and interesting, her work has been recognized widely with a high number of citations, invitations to give important presentations within and outside the field, and research grants. A researcher like Susan Herring should be recognized for extending the boundaries of the field in an original but meaningful way that resonates with developments in the information world as we know it today.
Thomson Reuters Outstanding Information Science Teacher
The 2013 Thomson Reuters Outstanding Information Science Teacher Award goes to Carole Palmer, who has been teaching at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign since 1996. Dr. Palmer’s research has examined contemporary problems in scientific data management, cultural heritage aggregation and scholarly communications. She has integrated her research into the classroom through innovative course and curriculum development, particularly in the areas of data curation.
Her work in data curation has been particularly noteworthy. She routinely places her students in prestigious internships at research centers throughout North America and acts as a mentor to students from the University of Tennessee through her work as a principal investigator of the IMLS-funded Data Curation Education in Research Centers (DCERC) grant. What is perhaps most important about her work in data curation is that Dr. Palmer not only pushes the boundaries of what her student’s future careers might include, but as many of her letters of support confirm, she grounds their education in a knowledge base that draws upon diverse information science sub-fields, including scholarly communications, scientometrics, information retrieval, information-seeking behavior and knowledge organization.
As her nominator wrote, “Dr. Palmer is an exemplar educator, a passionate and committed mentor and above all else, a profoundly kind and generous human being that has dedicated a significant portion of her own career to the advancement of others.” For her ability to mentor and motivate, for her transformative work in curricula development and for her sustained research and service in information science education, we recognize Dr. Palmer with the 2013 ASIS&T Outstanding Information Science Teacher Award.
Best JASIST Paper
The 2013 Best JASIST Paper Award goes to Ling-Ling Wu, Mu-Hsuan Huang and Ching-Yi Chen for Citation Patterns of the Pre-web and Web-prevalent Environments: The Moderating Effects of Domain Knowledge.
In their description of their work, the authors/researchers note that the Internet has substantially increased the online accessibility of scholarly publications and allowed researchers to access relevant information efficiently across different journals and databases (Costa & Meadows). Because of online accessibility, academic researchers tend to read more, and reading has become more superficial (Olle & Borrego), such that information overload has become an important issue. Given this circumstance, how the Internet affects knowledge transfer, or more specifically the citation behavior of researchers, has become a recent focus of interest. This study assesses the effects of the Internet on citation patterns in terms of four characteristics of cited documents: topic relevance, author status, journal prestige and age of references. This work hypothesizes that academic scholars cite more topically relevant articles, more articles written by lower status authors, articles published in less prestigious journals and older articles with online accessibility. The current study also hypothesizes that researcher knowledge level moderates such Internet effects. The researchers chose the IT and Group subject area and collected 241 documents published in the pre-web period (1991-1995) and 867 documents published in the web-prevalent period (2006-2010) in the Web of Science database. The references of these documents were analyzed to test the proposed hypotheses, which are significantly supported by the empirical results.
Pratt Severn Best Student Research Paper Award
The 2013 Pratt Severn Best Student Research Paper Award goes to Hilary Zelko, master’s student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, for her paper entitled Reasoning About Relevance.
Completed in partial fulfillment of her degree requirements, this empirical study contributes to research on relevance as multidimensional, dynamic and situational. Hilary’s research advisor states in the nomination that the research “surpasses in some cases the quality of work of many of our Ph.D. students.” Jurors note that the scope of Hilary’s research is truly impressive for a master’s level project, and they indicate that the research results offer useful suggestions for future research.
James Cretsos Leadership Award
Chirag Shah, assistant professor at Rutgers University, is the recipient of the 2013 James Cretsos Leadership Award, honoring a new ASIS&T member who has demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities in professional ASIS&T activities.
Since joining the organization as a student member, Chirag has shown a deep commitment to ASIS&T that is demonstrated in all of his activities involving scholarship, service and above all, leadership. As a faculty member at Rutgers since 2010, Chirag has consistently supported students’ efforts to attend and participate in ASIS&T Annual Meetings. He recruits students for ASIS&T membership, guides them through the process of submitting and presenting scholarly works at the meetings, and he helps secure funding for their travels. Since 2012, Chirag has also served as faculty advisor of the student chapter, called RU ASIS&T. His advising and support have helped RU ASIS&T establish new collaborations with other groups, such as Usability NJ and UXPA NJ, fostering new memberships and stronger engagement among existing ASIS&T members.
Furthering his involvement with ASIS&T, Chirag is also spearheading efforts to revive the NJ ASIS&T local chapter. With this role, he is serving as a very important bridge between the local chapter (NJ ASIS&T) and the student chapter (RU ASIST&T).
Chirag has also been very active organizing events at the ASIS&T Annual Meeting. He has taken initiatives to organize Rutgers University receptions at the meetings. He has served as reviewer for Annual Meetings and for JASIST. He has led various technical and social events for ASIS&T, including chairing a poster track at ASIS&T 2011, co-chairing a track at ASIS&T 2012, co-organizing SIG/USE 2012 workshop, and organizing the junior faculty lunch at ASIS&T 2012 meeting.
For all these reasons and more, each of which exemplifies leadership on behalf of ASIS&T and its members, Chirag Shah is the 2013 James Cretsos Leadership Award winner.
Best Information Science Book Award
The 2013 Best Information Science Book Award goes to Raya Fidel for Human Information Interaction: An Ecological Approach to Information Behavior (MIT Press).
An elegant, comprehensive, carefully sourced, well-informed look at an area of research that is fast growing and central to information science, this book is also relevant to various related fields, such as information retrieval and human computer interaction. Built on rigorous analysis of research and practice in the field, Fidel provides a fresh and innovative conceptual framework and methodology (cognitive work analysis) to guide research and practice in information behavior (IB). Taking an ecological approach, "Human Information Interaction is one of the few books in information behavior – and in the design of information systems – that is based on well-defined theoretical and conceptual traditions," as one of the supporting letter states. Human Information Interaction is an important scholarly contribution to information science and will have a significant impact on both research and practice. Clearly written by an outstanding researcher and teacher, the book also fills the need for IB textbooks in education.
Thomson Reuters Doctoral Dissertation Proposal Scholarship
The 2013 Thomson Reuters Doctoral Dissertation Proposal Scholarship goes to Kaitlin Costello, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, for her proposal entitled Investigating Information Seeking and Disclosure in Online Support Groups for Chronic Kidney Disease. Kaitlin proposes a grounded theory study that focuses on understanding the multiple dimensions of how online support sites may be used for informational and emotional support by patients. This proposal expands upon existing research that looks at the intertwining of information and emotional support at such sites by taking into account the possible processes that initiate and are initiated by self-disclosures of health-related information and the impact of such disclosures on the interactions. This study will provide a preliminary look at these processes as they occur over time among patients with serious chronic conditions.
Kaitlin’s faculty advisor notes that the “research will provide a strong foundation for additional studies into information seeking among users of support groups, as well as studies of health information disclosure. . . . In short, her work will open up fruitful paths for her own and others’ future studies.” Jurors agree with the advisor’s assessment, adding that the proposal “has a high degree of potential for new understanding for researchers, practitioners and users (patients). It is extensible and extremely relevant, particularly in the areas of chronic illness, information behavior, Internet use and privacy/disclosure. . . . This will be . . . very possibly a benchmark for further study and application in multiple topics.”
ProQuest Doctoral Dissertation Award
The 2013 ProQuest Doctoral Dissertation Award is presented to Sebastian K. Boell, University of New South Wales, for the dissertation entitled, Theorizing Information and Information Systems.
The European Chapter is the worthy recipient of the 2013 ASIS&T Chapter-of-the-Year Award. This chapter is very active and involved and engages the membership locally and across the Association. During the last year, the chapter brought in 18 new members (with a total of 108 members), held eight meetings and conducted 15 projects and services.
These included workshops and panels, mentoring programs for doctoral students, round tables, oral histories and webinars. Importantly, members of the chapter also played a large role in helping to emphasize the multinational reach of ASIS&T which culminated in the Association’s recent name change. In addition, European Chapter members assisted in establishing the nascent Asian chapter of ASIS&T. With 301 non-members attending the various chapter meetings, there is ample opportunity for further growth. The chapter has demonstrated that it can surpass the difficulties imposed by national boundaries and language differences. The European Chapter is an excellent chapter for other chapters to emulate.
For 2013, Student Chapter-of-the-Year Awards go to two chapters: Simmons College and
University of Denver.
The student chapter of Simmons has done excellent recruitment through creative methods. They have even developed an impressive FAQs for recruitment. These efforts have resulted in more than 300 memberships. The student chapter also hosted a number of heavily attended events, including a tour of Google Cambridge. The chapter invites faculty from other universities as guest speakers at their regular meetings, which helps broaden students' view of the field. They also actively work with and participate in events with NEASIS&T, the New England Chapter. These activities and efforts have opened the door to many exciting opportunities for its members and propelled the chapter in the direction for continuous growth.
For a chapter of its size, the student chapter at the University of Denver is extremely active. Among the particularly noteworthy activities of this chapter are the number and quality of local events, the frequency and constancy of communication with its membership, the oversight and concern for local chapter finances and the quality administration provided by the officers. The chapter offers many diverse and interesting activities and has attempted to work with other organizations. It has also shown creative use of social media as communication tools. They not only have a well-maintained organization, but also clearly articulated future plans.
For these reasons and others, the student chapters of Simmons College and the University of Denver are the 2013 Student Chapters-of-the-Year.
The ASIS&T 2013 SIG-of-the-Year Award is presented to Special Interest Group/History and Foundations of Information Science
(SIG/HFIS) for its many efforts toward capturing the historical impact of ASIS&T and its members. SIG/HFIS has, among other things, collected vital oral histories of ASIS&T and explored disparate archives for images that illustrate that history. In addition, SIG members worked tirelessly toward exhibiting and preserving elements of that history with their contributions to both the 2012 Pre-Conference on the History of ASIS&T and the subsequent print and eBook publication of the proceedings of the event. SIG/HFIS also notably continues to develop the Portal for Oral Histories in Information Science and Technology, while maintaining the regular SIG activities of recruiting and publishing for its members.
Judit Bar-Ilan is the worthy recipient of the 2013 SIG Member-of-the-Year Award. She is noted particularly for her contributions to her SIG as both an officer and a mentor to junior members; for her contributions to publications produced by her SIG; for service in recruitment and promotion of her SIG electronically and in person across two continents; and for a long and continuing history in organizing symposia, workshops and program sessions for her SIG.
The 2013 SIG Publication-of-the-Year Award is awarded to Special Interest Group/International Information Issues (SIG/III) for SIG/III’s 30th Anniversary Commemorative Publication. The SIG is particularly noted for its efforts in gathering and publishing the history, including ensuring contributions with diverse points-of-view across all areas of interest and for innovative and ongoing use and support of social media to communicate with members during research, production and marketing of the anniversary volume.
IA and RDAP Summits Just Ahead
Two huge conferences in the ASIS&T portfolio are just ahead. Mark your calendars and make your plans to participate in the 15th IA Summit and RDAP14 in San Diego in late March.
For its 15th annual gathering, the IA Summit will bring professionals together from March 26-30 to reflect upon current challenges and opportunities, as well as the rich history of the annual gatherings and the conversations that have begun. Under the theme The Path Ahead, organizers of the IA Summit encouraged submissions addressing ways to make the most of the opportunities created by the recognition the field has received. And the results are in – a fantastic program is planned for all who join the crowd in San Diego. Get full details at http://2014.iasummit.org/.
RDAP14 – Research Data Access and Preservation Summit 2014 – is once again co-located with the IA Summit. For three days, March 26-28, RDAP14 will feature programming focused on practical approaches to research data management, access and preservation, including success stories and lessons learned, innovative research, and resources and tools developed by and for the RDAP community. The RDAP14 program is online at www.asis.org/rdap/program.
The hotel venue for both summits is the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina.
News from ASIS&T Headquarters
A Physical Move in the Works
Around the middle of February ASIS&T HQ will be moving to 8555 16th Street, Suite 850, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Updated information, including phone and fax numbers, will be posted as it becomes available and confirmed.
ASIS&T Constitutional Change Sought
An amendment to the ASIS&T Constitution, mirroring the change made in the bylaws last summer updating the window for voting, will be coming soon. The constitution is a separate document legally and needs to be separately amended.
ASIS&T History Fund Wants Your Help
Established in 2000 by the ASIS&T Board of Directors, the ASIS&T History Fund encourages research in the history of information science and technology. Each year the fund supports various historical projects and research work. In the past year, the fund provided cash awards for its annual research grant and best paper award; supported student travel to the ASIS&T Annual Meeting; and continued its support of the ASIS&T oral history project.
While the History Fund is in the black, there is not enough cash to continue the kinds of historical research projects that the fund’s board of advisors hopes to support. These projects include the ongoing oral history project, as well as preservation and access to ASIS&T historical resources.
Current members of the Board of Advisors are Sarah Buchanan, University of Texas at Austin, chair; Michael Buckland, University of California, Berkeley, emeritus; Samantha Hastings, University of South Carolina; Trudi Bellardo Hahn, Drexel University; Kathryn La Barre, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Lai Ma, University College Dublin; and Robert Williams, University of South Carolina, emeritus.
The Board of Adivsors urges all ASIS&T members to indicate their interest in preserving the history of the fields of information science and technology as well as the history of the one professional organization that has served the changing foci of research and practice throughout the development of the information age.
How can you help? You can donate in a variety of ways including dedicating book royalties, committing to challenges, providing matching funds and through individual contributions.
Donate today by sending your contribution to the fund:
ASIS&T History Fund
Attention: Richard Hill
8555 16th Street, Suite 850
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Please indicate in your correspondence that the donation is intended for the ASIS&T History Fund. You will receive an acknowledgement of your tax-deductible gift for your tax records.
News about ASIS&T Members
Former ASIS&T president Gary Marchionini, dean and Cary C. Boshamer Distinguished Professor in the School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has been named digital preservation pioneer in an article in the Library of Congress’ The Signal. The recognition notes how Marchionini’s interest in information retrieval, human/computer interaction and information architecture grew from his experience as a junior high school math teacher in the days when teletype machines networked to computers were used for electronic drills and practices.
Kenneth R. Fleischmann, University of Texas at Austin, is the author of the latest entry in Morgan & Claypool’s series on Information Concepts, Retrieval and Services. In the author’s description,
Information and Human Values “seeks to advance understanding of the relationship between information and human values by synthesizing the complementary but typically disconnected threads in the literature.”
News from an ASIS&T SIG
SIG/III Seeks Candidates for InfoShare Award
ASIS&T SIG/International Information Issues (SIG/III) will once again in 2014 offer complimentary ASIS&T memberships to a group of information professionals from developing countries. The InfoShare Membership Award is available to master’s and Ph.D. students, as well as working professionals. Nominations are now sought for the one-year memberships, renewable for a second year, based on their ASIS&T activities.
Nominations of worthy individuals must include one-page curriculum vita and one-page descriptions of why the nominees are deserving of membership, including their willingness to promote ASIS&T within their networks. The deadline for nominations is February 16, 2014.
Nominations should be sent to Devendra Potnis (dpotnis<at>utk.edu) or Selenay Aytac (selenay.aytac<at>liu.edu).
CALL FOR PARTICIPATION
Connecting Collections, Cultures and Communities
77th Annual Meeting of the Association for Information Science and Technology
October 31-November 4, 2014 Sheraton Seattle Hotel Seattle, Washington
No sooner does one ASIS&T Annual Meeting end than a new committee launches headlong into the process of planning the next one. With the successful venture into Canada for the first Annual Meeting since the renaming of our society to better reflect our international interests, now the Association for Information Science and Technology plans to meet in the beautiful city of Seattle, Washington.
The ASIS&T Annual Meeting is the premier international conference dedicated to the study of information, people and technology in contemporary society. The meeting gathers leading scholars and practitioners from around the globe to share innovations, ideas, research and insights into the state and future of information and communication in play, work, governance and society. The ASIS&T Annual Meeting has an established record for pushing the boundaries of information studies, exploring core concepts and ideas, and creating new technological and conceptual configurations -- all situated in interdisciplinary discourses.
For 2014, ASIS&T will explore the connections among collections, cultures and communities. The conference planning committee welcomes contributions from all areas of information science and technology. The Annual Meeting celebrates plurality in methods, theories and conceptual frameworks; it has historically presented research and development from a broad spectrum of domains.
Four types of submissions that address the broad theme of the meeting are encouraged: papers, panels, posters and workshops.
PAPERS: Papers should discuss, analyze or critique theories and concepts or report original, unpublished research, substantiated by experimentation, simulation, theoretical development, analysis or application. Submissions will be judged on quality of content, significance for theory, method, design, education or engagement, originality and level of innovativeness, and quality of presentation. Papers will be refereed in a double-blind process, and accepted papers will be published the digital conference proceedings. The maximum length for a paper is 10 pages, single-spaced.
PANELS: Proposals for panels, lightening talks, fishbowls, Pecha Kucha, etc., are invited on topics that include emerging cutting-edge research and design, analyses of emerging trends, opinions on controversial issues, analyses of tools and techniques, and contrasting viewpoints from experts in complementary areas of research. Panels are not a substitute for a set of contributed papers, but must have a cohesive theme and promote lively interaction between panelists and audience members. Submit 3-5 pages that provide an overview of the issues to be discussed by the panel. Proposals should also list panelists who have agreed to participate and indicate the qualifications and contribution that each panelist will offer.
POSTERS: Posters are a vehicle for face-to-face presentations and interactions using traditional posters, short videos or live demonstrations. These formats provide opportunities for interactive discussion and feedback about the work. Poster presentations are expected to invite questions and discussion in a personal and less-formal setting. Posters offer a unique opportunity to present late-breaking results, work in progress or research that is best communicated in an interactive or graphical format. Please note, however, that posters describing work that is simply a proposal will not be accepted. Submissions for refereeing should be in the form of an extended abstract of up to 4 pages.
WORKSHOPS: The purpose of pre-conference workshops, symposia and tutorials is to provide a more informal setting for the exchange of ideas on a focused topic and suggest directions for future work. As such, workshops and tutorials offer a good opportunity for researchers and professionals to present and discuss work with an interested community. Workshops may be mini-focused research presentations, a series of working events, brainstorming and idea sharing, or even teaching/learning a new skill. In particular, SIGs are invited to submit proposals for half-day or full-day events on topics that are pertinent to the goals of the SIGs. Proposals that are not SIG-related or sponsored are also welcome. Only one submission per SIG is permitted for a workshop, and additional participation fees will apply.
Jens-Erik Mai, University of Copenhagen, chairs the 2014 ASIS&T Annual Meeting. The following committee members will assist:
PAPERS CO-CHAIRS: Melanie Feinberg, University of Texas at Austin, and Jonathan Furner, University of California, Los Angeles
PANELS CO-CHAIRS: Howard Rosenbaum and Pnina Fichman, Indiana University
POSTERS CO-CHAIRS: Nadia Caidi, University of Toronto, and Lai Ma, University College Dublin
WORKSHOPS & TUTORIALS, LOCAL ARRANGEMENTS AND LOGISTICS: Richard Hill, ASIS&T
Important Dates and Deadlines
All submissions for papers, panels, workshops and tutorials must be in hand by April 30. Notifications of acceptance will be sent in June. Submissions for posters, demos and videos are due by July 1, with notifications following at the end of July.
Additional Conference Information
As always, please look to the ASIS&T website – www.asist.org – for additional information and updates on all Annual Meeting-related activities.
Articles in this Issue