Conference Themes Ideas

The headings below in caps represent the broad theme heading with the sub-themes as specific topic areas below that we want to cover within that theme.

For each theme please ask consider: what is missing, what needs to be clearer etc. Please initial your comments. Thank you!

(theme name too long? suggestions welcome - LC) [PB: "Going mobile, going global" perhaps?] - Liked this. [SD] [Agree it's too long, how about "Overcoming connection complexities in information services delivery" HH]

  • Managing the growing complexity of delivery channels (desktop, web, mobile, smartphone, tablet (and organising knowledge for multiple audiences and channels)
  • New services and resources via apps:

QRcodes and NFC
Mobile search and Geo-location

  • Mapping services
  • Enterprise mobility: Intranet apps and collaboration
  • Challenges around information access on devices: sustainability, viability, security of services
  • Mobile working and libraries

Librarian focus: New roles and skills – mobile literacy
Managing user expectations
New role of the library: library as a space

GS - Issues around licensing of products on devices. Security issues?

eBooks has exploded and we need this as a separate theme, more focus on the user side than the publisher side - LC

  • Social eReading
  • eBooks and the user experience:
  • using multimedia
  • eReading apps
  • eBooks and libraries
  • eBook business models: e.g. Apple vs. Amazon vs Sony [PG: vs publishers e.g. the HarperCollins 26+ dispute – reminiscent of arguments over vanishing ejournals when subscriptions end]

[PB: Yes, the HC nonsense has really highlighted the situation that we're now in. I'd like to see much wider discussion of different pricing models - particularly down the Spotify and LoveFilms route. I'd also like to raise the spectre of 'why do we want to physically own the item'. Most books I just read once, and will never read again. Why do I need to keep them, other than that I've already got them. I don't feel the same about renting films for example.]

  • Print vs. digital: Managing Information assurance, access, accuracy and authenticity
  • Open access/Open Standards (e.g. ePub)
  • (Emerging ecommerce models for) digital lending
  • Digital Rights Management (DRM)


  • Open source
  • Mobile search
  • Social & real time search

Managing privacy [PG: EU directive requiring explicit user agreement to being tracked by cookies]
Identifying, evaluating, incorporating reliable content/resources

  • Semantic search and discovery
  • Multimedia search
  • Embedded search
  • New and alternative search engines

Should social media be split out here? We have used the term 'social media' 'web 2.0' quite heavily over the last few years, can we use the terms 'community' and 'collaboration' instead? Or is this getting too ahead of the game? How would librarians feel about this? [PG:[My view; ‘social media’ is still a convenient shorthand, and community / collaboration isn’t yet “business as usual” for many librarians. Maybe one message this year is that many of the information professional’s partners and rivals now work routinely through ‘social media’– i.e. it isn’t something separate and special, though businesses (including libraries) should have some policies on how they collaborate with their communities. We can drop the label when the new ways of working are understood not just by the new professionals and the senior pathfinders, but by the whole sector] [HH just one thing to add here - avoid Web 2.0 as a label because it appears to have lost currency.]

  • Leadership: skills and capabilities for 21st century working
  • Personal vs. professional use of social media
  • Working outside the corporate firewall
  • Balancing privacy and personalisation when using social tools
  • Collaborating in the workplace

Globally distributed team working
Using SharePoint
Knowledge sharing and creating trusted environment (SD to consider this one LC)

  • Procurement of services via social media (Phil: I think you mentioned this in the Committee meeting, please can you expand on what you mean? Thx LC) [PB: Goldfish impression. Not really sure what I meant. However, it might have been an idea around the idea of using social media material without buying them, and having a new way of looking at the whole concept of buying and owning material, be it products or software.]
  • User generated content [HH I'd like to see some good papers on this that show that librarians are working with end-users over social media platforms to design and deliver services together - as opposed to librarians using social media to replicate existing services in a similar - often "broadcast model" way.]
  • Crowdsourcing [PB: What's also important to mention here is that it's not always a good thing. Cat in the bin woman ended up losing her job and getting death threats; wholly inappropriate given the crime. A magazine - Cooks Source - closed inside a week because of crowdsourcing, and lots of people will have lost jobs through no fault of their own. At what point do we have to accept that we are all culpable when things get out of hand, and how much more difficult is it to stop something than it is to start it?]
  • The role of the internet in society: eDictatorship and eDemocracy (where does this fit - LC) [PG:[Probably the right place – since our meeting there have been many examples in North Africa / Middle East, e.g. reports on the use / banning of Twitter in Egypt and Libya. May be worth looking at other players who run events e.g. world e-democracy forum in Issy-les-Moulineaux]
  • eScience/eResearch - partnering to provide shared services
  • New services around Twitter e.g. better stated as "New and emerging business models around Twitter, e.g."

Recent conversations about the fragmentation of the profession and t* he need for advocacy make this very relevant - LC
This theme is alll about skills, competenices and evolving roles - LC

  • Diversification of the profession: evaluating changing roles
  • Working creatively with social media for value and efficiency
  • Aligning with the organisation: New roles to remain in current job [HH I'd also like to know about what happens to people who lose their jobs. What are the options for the huge number of "independent information professionals"?
  • Information Professionals as content curators

Curation is an evolving concept that addresses two parallel trends: the explosive growth in data, and our need to be able to find information in coherent, reasonably contextual groupings - has anyone come across this? LC [PG:Yes, bloggers are starting to discuss = links social media and library/information science] [HH - yes management of large data sets is emerging role for information professionals]

  • Proving value: how information and knowledge management skills create value for organisations
  • Management, marketing and negotiation skills for information professionals

GS: Information Governance skills are now critical. It's a complex world and user rely on someone to be able to retrieve what they need and advise them on how to use it. Internal and external information. Cross with records management?
GS: Impact of Search on indexing internal documents/records. Need to add value. Intorduction of shared services and outsourcing. Is it still interesting? Allen and Overy coming out of India to Belfast. Are there other examples of bringing services back in house? Integreon Bristol outsourcing consortia would be interesting to hear about
GS : Impact of self service. Are librarians retreating into back offices to deliver services through screens, or are they becoming more visible and intergrated with users to develop services?
GS: Impact of wider service delivery. In law firms libraries somtimes have arrangements to provide services to clients as well as to lawyers. Part of added value of firm's service. Introduces other considerations about resources and licensing agreements.

Innovation is a buzz word, would be good to have a theme around this, also fits within other themes LC

  • Smarter working: service provision with fewer resources and staff
  • Libraries working with museums and archives in new ways: future roles of information instiutions
  • Collaboration models (www.collaborative
  • Big Society [See Suggest we contact Steve Moore (ku.oc.yteicosgibeht|evets#ku.oc.yteicosgibeht|evets) and David Wilcox (moc.retroperlaicos|divad#moc.retroperlaicos|divad) to solicit further ideas for this topic. I'll start the ball rolling and email them]
  • About Smart Cities Smart Cities: joined up services - check out [SD: I have contacted Allan Mayo and Chris Tollady at BIS to get thought/input for this topic. IBM very active in this area. Best contact there is IBM UK CTO moc.mbi.ku|ramrap_kihsar#moc.mbi.ku|ramrap_kihsar

[HH There's also the European SmartCities project in which Edinburgh Napier is a partner:]

GS Any case studies of successful Innovation Networks? There is an association called i and i which you might get a speaker from.e.g. Sophie Smiles [moc.nidnami|selims.eihpos#moc.nidnami|selims.eihpos] Not specifically about libraries, though Chris Collison has spoken to them about KM and i talked to them as an after dinner speaker once.


  • Open and linked data creating new resources for improved information delivery
  • Open standards
  • Open and linked data in Government - where next?
  • Training to use and interpret: skill sets and capabilities
  • Licencing and business models in a world of linked data
  • Apps and Visualisations
  • Mash Ups
  • Taxonomies, folksonomies and enterprise semantics
  • What has the web of linked data ever done for me? [SD: Maybe a slightly quirky title - can be changed if anyone comes up with something better. There has been much hype this past couple of years about the semantic web (linked data), but what has it actually delivered in terms of value to users and the enterprise. Where do we think it is in the technology adoption lifecycle (Rogers Bell CurveRogers bell curve)]
  • New models for delivering public sector services [SD: Thinking primarily of apps here. Examples available from Lichfield DC (Stuart Harrison), plus can get some examples from other local authorities.]


  • New roles for libraries and librarians
  • Issues of: Responsibility, ownership and trust
  • Moving to Google Apps
  • The ‘G’ Cloud
  • Software as a Service
  • Platform as a Service
  • Infrastructure as a Service

[HH love to see some good case studies on these themes.]

GS: The Economist have been running events on this. moc.tsimonoce|nedlohyeslek#moc.tsimonoce|nedlohyeslek contacted me about a breakfast meeting. I'm not going! Might be worth a chat with her. I will forward you the note>

Do we need this theme? Is it too technical? Can it be merged with something else? LC
[PG: Can be covered within Discovery and Community – is there enough for a separate thread here? Probably not] [HH - yes, doesn't merit own theme strand on the programme]
[SD: I suggest we remove this theme. I've added 'Open Standards' to Theme 7 (Semantic web) and I think mots of the topics here can be covered in Theme 7.]

[SD: I think we need something on mapping services. Could be added into Theme 1 (have put there for now). I found out the other day that Google maps are not licensed for use across Gov/Local Gov]