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Series: Information Management Public Lectures

The Information Management Public Lectures give attention to exciting advances in research and professional practice. The topics are diverse reflecting the importance and global extent of Information Management in today’s society. The lectures are open to all members of the Dalhousie campus and surrounding community.

  • Lectures are arranged in reverse chronological order. 
  •  Indicates lecture recordings. Live streaming is not currently available.

2015-2016 Lectures

Exploring Space and Place with Mobile Applications (Keith Lawson)

Keith Lawson
School of Information Management, Dalhousie University

Lecture Details
Monday, September 28th, 2015 from 5:35pm-6:35pm
Room 1020, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

Abstract: A new interest in space and place has encouraged museums and archives to find ways to use mobile devices to create connections between items in their collections and the locations associated with these items beyond the walls of their institutions, giving visitors a new access and opportunities to create new experiences. This paper brings together ideas from Michael de Certeau, tourism studies, game studies, and mobile interface theory to examine how digital objects—texts (images, audio and video) presented through mobile devices create an experience of place. This experience may be of a single place or of multiple places joined in a larger narrative space.  

Biography: Keith Lawson is an Assistant Professor in the School of Information Management at Dalhousie University. His teaching focuses on communications and technology, including a course on Web Design and Architecture -- which has a Digital Humanities component. He has worked on the Elizabeth Barrett Browning Archive and on projects with Dalhousie University Digital Archives and Special Collections. 

Since work on Thomas De Quincey as a graduate student, Keith has been interested in imaginative responses to urban life. His current research focuses on the use of mobile applications by institutions of cultural memory to connect visitors and tourists to objects, places, and events.

iMarine in Support of FAO's Blue Growth Initiative: The Information Requirements* (Marc Taconet)

 

Marc Taconet
Food & Agriculture Organization of the UN, Rome

Lecture Details
Thursday, October 8th, 2015 from 4:30-6:30pm
University Hall, MacDonald Building, 6300 Coburg Road (across from the University Club, Studley Campus)

Reception to follow the lecture - co-sponsored by the Dalhousie President's Office, Dalhousie Libraries, and the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture (5:30-6:30pm).

*Co-sponsored by the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization

Abstract: In order to address the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the UN, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) has recently launched its Blue Growth initiative. A key challenge for the promotion of Blue Growth is the need for facts-based decision making across multiple scientific disciplines, a challenge which a data infrastructure such as iMarine can help articulating. iMarine aims at developing collaborative science, and the platform has demonstrated a strong potential to deliver cost-efficient solutions by pooling together data, software, methodologies and expertise. Beyond the technological demonstration, its uptake however requires the development of a comprehensive sustainability plan, including governance, data policies, marketing, outreach, and capacity building (www.i-marine.eu/Pages/Home.aspx).

Biography: Marc Taconet is the Chief of the Statistics and Information Branch, FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department, and Secretary of the FIRMS partnership. A member of the FAO Rome-based staff since 1987, Mr. Taconet has led the development of the Fisheries Global Information System (FIGIS), played a leading user-community role in several European Union-funded projects, and chaired the iMarine board.

Mindtools: What Does it Mean to be Literate in the Age of Google? (Dan Russell)

Dan Russell
Google Inc.

Lecture Details
Wednesday, October 21st, 2015 from 5:30pm-6:30pm
Room 3089, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

Abstract: What does it mean to be literate at a time when you can search billions of texts in less than 300 milliseconds? Although you might think that "literacy" is one of the great constants that transcends the ages, the skills of a literate person have changed substantially over time as texts and technology allow for new kinds of reading and understanding. Knowing how to read is just the beginning of it -- knowing how to frame a question, pose a query, how to interpret the texts you find, how to organize and use the information you discover, how to understand your metacognition -- these are all critical parts of being literate as well. In this talk Russell will review what literacy is today, in the age of Google, and show how some very surprising and unexpected skills will turn out to be critical in the years ahead.  We have created powerful new tools for the mind. Thing is, those tools are constantly evolving and changing even as the things they operate on change as well. This puts us in the position of having to learn how to find tools, and understanding the substrate on which they work. Literacy in these days is not just reading and writing, but also understanding what knowledge tools are available, and how they can be used in interesting new ways.  And the role of the designer turns out to be critical in this new understanding of literacy  

Biography: Daniel Russell is the Űber Tech Lead for Search Quality and User Happiness in Mountain View.  He earned his PhD in computer science, specializing in Artificial Intelligence until he realized that amplifying human intelligence was his real passion.  His day job is researching how people search and the ways they come to learn about the world through Google.  His 20% job is teaching the world to search more effectively.  Dan enjoys teaching, learning, running and music, preferably all in one day. Dan blogs at SearchReSearch (http://searchresearch1.blogspot.com), teaches search skills classes online at PowerSearchingWithGoogle.com, and teaches live search/research classes live throughout the civilized world.

Fraud Forgotten? What the History of Drug Regulation Teaches Us About the Importance of Transparency Today (Matthew Herder)

Lecture not recorded.

Matthew Herder
Dalhousie University

Lecture Details
Wednesday, November 4th, 2015 from 12:00-1:00pm
Room 3089, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

Abstract: Greater transparency is needed in the realm of pharmaceutical drugs. The current policy focus is on disclosing more information about the safety and effectiveness of drugs. But to be effective, transparency must serve another purpose - namely, of enabling standard setting through a more participatory, public model of drug regulation. I turn to the history of Canadian drug regulation to demonstrate that such a conception of transparency is not only possible, but increasingly needed. I argue that tying transparency to a revitalized concept of fraud in drug research and development might help activate more participatory, public regulatory work.  

Biography: Matthew Herder is an associate professor in the Faculties of Medicine and Law at Dalhousie University. He holds three law degrees from Dalhousie and Stanford University's Law School. His research centres around biomedical innovation policy, with a particular focus on intellectual property law and practices connected to the commercialization of scientific research. He is currently the Principal Investigator on a three year CIHR operating grant. He has been commissioned to write reports and appear as an expert witness before key national and international institutions, including the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development and, most recently, two Canadian Parliamentary committees, which contributed to the most important changes to Canada's Food and Drugs Act since the thalidomide disaster of the 1960s. 

Bridging the Gap: The Communication of Information in Complex, Multi-sectoral Networks (Lee Wilson)

Lee Wilson
Dalhousie University

Lecture Details
Monday, January 25th, 2016 from 1:00-2:00pm
Room 3001, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

*embedded in the class INFO 6100: Information in Public Policy and Decision Making

Abstract: Research has shown that the development of strong communication and information-sharing networks is essential to the success of natural resource developments, particularly those taking place in highly active, and often hotly contested, coastal areas. In the Bay of Fundy region, tidal power offers a source of clean, renewable energy, as well as a means to strengthen local economies. The implementation of tidal power affects many stakeholders, e.g., municipal, provincial, and federal government agencies; non-governmental organizations (NGOs); environmental groups; industry both domestic and foreign; universities; and community groups, including First Nations communities. This lecture will present the results of a mixed-methods case study that used Social Network Analysis (SNA) and semi-structured interviews to examine tidal power stakeholder communication networks operating in the Bay of Fundy region of Nova Scotia. Understanding how, and indeed if, stakeholder organizations are communicating yields insights into how communication channels may be improved, which can also be applied to similar contexts, e.g., the offshore wind and wave energy industries. Among the many findings emerging from this research, the importance of “bridger” organizations, particularly from the NGO sector, in facilitating the flow and use of information among diverse organizations is highlighted.

Biography: Lee Wilson recently defended his Master of Library and Information Studies (MLIS) thesis which investigated tidal power communication networks operating in the Bay of Fundy region of Nova Scotia. He has been employed as a research assistant with the Environmental Information: Use and Influence (EIUI) research program (www.eiui.ca) since 2014. His work with EIUI focused on understanding the information pathways in complex networks, particularly in the context of natural resource management occurring in coastal and ocean regions. In addition to being an active member of the EIUI team, Lee has begun work on a new research initiative with Dr. Mike Smit (School of Information Management) and the Marine Environmental Observation Prediction and Response Network (MEOPAR - www.meopar.ca/) about the state of ocean data management in Canada.

Driving Influential Leadership in a Global Context in the Information Profession (Ingrid Parent)

The 2016 Dalhousie Horrocks National Leadership Lecture*

Ingrid Parent
University Libarian, University of British Columbia

Lecture Details
Thursday, February 4th, 2016 from 12:00pm-2:00pm
University Hall, MacDonald Building, 6300 Coburg Road

*Presentation of the Dalhousie Horrocks National Leadership Award + a reception with light refreshments to follow.

RSVP here (required by January 31st).

Abstract: Librarians on the leadership track are encountering a fast-paced and changing landscape. UBC’s University Librarian and former President of the International Federation of Library Associations Ingrid Parent shares her insights on how today’s librarians can become influential leaders, drawing from her international perspective and leadership style.

Biography: Ingrid Parent joined the University of British Columbia (UBC) on July 1, 2009 as its 14th University Librarian. Her appointment marks a return to her alma mater, where Dr. Parent earned a BA in Honours History and a library science degree the following year. After graduating, she moved to eastern Canada and held increasingly senior positions, culminating in her role as Assistant Deputy Minister, Library and Archives Canada (LAC).

The digital agenda – including the collection of electronic publications and archival records, the provision of new and efficient digital services, and converting information to digital formats – is one of Dr. Parent’s top priorities. At LAC, she led the development of the Canadian Digital Information Strategy, a major effort to advance the country’s digital agenda.

Dr. Parent is recognized nationally and internationally for her outstanding contributions to libraries and the library profession. She is the 2009 winner of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) award for Distinguished Service to Research Librarianship, and has been actively involved in the governance of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) for the past decade, culminating in her serving as its President from 2011 – 2013.

Dr. Parent received an honorary doctorate from the University of Ottawa in 2011 as part of its convocation ceremonies including the first graduating class of the university’s Masters in Information Studies Program. She also received IFLA’s Honorary Fellowship in 2014, the third Canadian to be given this distinction, in recognition of her engagement in promoting Canadian libraries in the international library community.

Designing Virtual Environments for Children and Teens: Challenges and Opportunities (Jamshid Beheshti)

Dr. Jamshid Beheshti
McGill University

Lecture Details
Monday, February 22nd, 2016 from 2:30-3:30pm
Room 3001, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

Abstract: Virtual environments (VEs) provide the unique experience of a sense of being within a 3D space, where the user is involved by interacting with objects. In education, immersion and presence can have strong motivational impact for students, who can actively be engaged in building their own internal models of the world.  VEs may also be used as an alternative information retrieval tool by presenting a more engaging browsing environment for children and teens. Creating informational and educational VEs, however, can be perplexing, requiring multitudes of experts, advanced technologies, funds and time.  In this presentation the challenges and opportunities in the design process of two different VE projects will be discussed.

Biography: Jamshid Beheshti, in collaboration with his colleagues, has produced more than one hundred publications, and has obtained close to three million dollars in research grants from SSHRC and other organizations over the past two decades. His research has focused primarily on investigating the information behavior of children and youth, and on designing and developing tools to assist them in their information seeking in the academic milieu.  The culmination of his experience has led to the publication of two books on the topic of information behaviour.  He served for five years as the Interim Dean and Associate Dean of the Faculty of Education, and for six years as the Director of the School of Information Studies at McGill University.

Choosing Food: Exploring Consumers' Use of Ingredient Information (Mark McCumber)

Mark McCumber
New Brunswick Public Library Services

Lecture Details
Thursday, February 25th, 2016 from 5:35-6:35pm
Room 3001, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

*embedded in the class INFO 6750: Health Sciences Literature and Information Sources

Abstract: Food labelling is designed to help consumers make better food choices. Understanding how this information is used becomes increasingly important as relationships between diet and diseases are recognized. Research on food label use has left the list of ingredients under-explored, despite its identification as an important component of the food label. As an internal cognitive process, information use during food choices is difficult to measure without influencing behaviour. This lecture will present the results of mixed-methods research designed to gain insight into cognitive and behavioural aspects of food choices. A survey measured self-reported nutrition behaviours of 518 university students. A screening tool identified surveyed volunteers likely to use ingredient information, 11 of which completed a simulated shopping task that produced rich qualitative data relating to food label information use. A theoretical approach to thematic analysis revealed that participants focused on avoidance of negatives when making food choices, employing various strategies to accomplish this goal.

Bio: Mark McCumber graduated from the MLIS program at Dalhousie in 2015. For a devoted vegetarian and conscious consumer who is eternally suspicious of our food production industries, it was the natural choice to incorporate some aspect of food security into his pursuit of the MLIS. Having become intrigued by the study of information seeking behaviour, he determined to combine this field with his natural interests, designing a study intended to explore how people use food label information when making food choices. Mark currently works for New Brunswick Public Library Services as the Public Services Librarian for the York Region. Residing in Fredericton, New Brunswick, he still reads every food label of products that he’s considering purchasing, as well as many that he is not, and is somewhat dissatisfied that he can only wear denim on Fridays and weekends.

From Bibliometrics to Altmetrics: Current Challenges in the Measurement of Scholarly Activity (Vinvent Larivière) WORKSHOP

Dr. Vincent Larivière
University of Montreal

Dr. Stephanie Haustein
University of Montreal

Workshop Details
Monday, March 7th, 2016 from 12:00pm-1:30pm
Room 3089, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

*A light lunch will be served at 11:45am in Rowe 3087

*co-sponsored by the Dalhousie President's Office, SSHRC (Research Development Fund), and Dalhousie Libraries

Abstract: Since the creation of the Science Citation Index in 1963, sociologists of science and information scientists have developed methodologies to quantify various aspects of scholarly activity based on papers and citations. The digital era, which makes it easier for knowledge to be diffused, accessed and used, has led to a diversification of the means for communicating scholarly information, but also increased the traces it leaves online—especially on social media. This workshop will provide an introduction to bibliometrics and to the new family of social media-based indicators of scholarly activity currently grouped under the umbrella term of “altmetrics”, emphasizing possibilities and limitations. 

Bios: Vincent Larivière holds the Canada Research Chair on the Transformations of Scholarly Communication at the Université de Montréal, where he is an associate professor of information science. He is also the scientific director of the Érudit platform, associate scientific director of the Observatoire des sciences et des technologies (OST) and a regular member of the Centre interuniversitaire de recherche sur la science et la technologie (CIRST). Vincent holds a bachelor’s degree in Science, Technology and Society (UQAM), a master’s degree in History (UQAM) and a Ph.D. in Information Science (McGill), for which he received the 2009 Eugene Garfield Dissertation Scholarship award.

Stefanie Haustein is a post-doctoral researcher at the Canada Research Chair on the Transformations of Scholarly Communication at the University of Montreal. Her current research focuses on social media in scholarly communication and making sense of so-called “altmetrics” and is supported by a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. She is co-chair of the NISO Working Group on altmetrics data quality. Stefanie holds a Master’s degree in history, American linguistics and literature and information science and a PhD in information science from Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany.

On Transformations of Scholarly Communication in the Digital Era (Vincent Larivière)

Dr. Vincent Larivière
University of Montreal (Canada Research Chair on the Transformations of Scholarly Communication)

Lecture Details
Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 from 4:15pm-5:15pm
Room 3089, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building, 6100 University Avenue

*co-sponsored by the Dalhousie President's Office, SSHRC (Research Development Fund), and Dalhousie Libraries

Abstract: This year marks the 350th anniversary of the creation of the first scientific journal, the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. At the beginning of the 19th century, journals became the fastest and most convenient way of disseminating new research results, outranking correspondence and monographs with which they had happily coexisted until then. They consolidated this position throughout the 20th Century, especially in the sciences. The advent of the digital era then challenged their traditional role and form. Indeed, digital technologies, which are easy to update, reuse, access, and transmit, have changed how researchers produce and disseminate knowledge, as well as how this knowledge is accessed, used, and cited. Drawing on historical and contemporary empirical data, this talk will address the past and current transformations of scholarly communication, with an emphasis on how these transformations have affected the speed at which knowledge is disseminated. 

Biography: Vincent Larivière holds the Canada Research Chair on the Transformations of Scholarly Communication at the Université de Montréal, where he is an associate professor of information science. He is also the scientific director of the Érudit platform, associate scientific director of the Observatoire des sciences et des technologies (OST) and a regular member of the Centre interuniversitaire de recherche sur la science et la technologie (CIRST). Vincent holds a bachelor’s degree in Science, Technology and Society (UQAM), a master’s degree in History (UQAM) and a Ph.D. in Information Science (McGill), for which he received the 2009 Eugene Garfield Dissertation Scholarship award.