Previously School of Library & Information Studies
Friday Afternoon Seminar: Summaries.
296a-1 Seminar: Information Access, Fall 2020.
Fridays 3-5. 107 South Hall.
Details will be added as they become available.
Meetings by Zoom only in Fall 2020 semester. Participants are now
required to have and to use their own Zoom account.
The link to each Seminar session will be available only at
the School's event listing: www.ischool.berkeley.edu/events.
Aug 28: Clifford LYNCH: Lifecycle Planning and Cost Estimation for
Biomedical Data, and Implications for Repository Strategies
Introduction to the Seminar.
Over the past 18 months or so I have had the opportunity
to serve on a US National Academies committee looking at approaches
to lifecycle planning and cost estimation for biomedical data at the
request of the National Library of Medicine. The committee released
its report in June 2020. I'll discuss some of the highlights of the
report from my perspective, with particular focus on what it implies
for our thinking about data curation, repositories, and data archiving.
More on the committee at:
The report can be downloaded for free at:
The link to each Seminar session is available only at
the School's event listing: www.ischool.berkeley.edu/events.
Sept 4: Labor Day: No Seminar Meeting.
Sept 11: Michael BUCKLAND & Wayne DE FREMERY, Sogang University, Korea:
An examination of contexts. Although often used to
mean the circumstances or setting of an event, statement, or idea,
the history of the word “context” has its origins in the idea of
connecting, of weaving together. We examine how different kinds
of contexts are woven together, the ways that they fray, what
connects creators, documents, and other observers, and what
disconnects them. We consider the problems of lack of context and
the obsolescence of recorded contexts. We also consider mass
media, social media, and big data as they are connected to
totalizing effects and totalitarian ideologies. Lists and list
making are connected with context etymologically and provide a
useful material and conceptual tool for thinking about what counts
as the circumstances of an event, statement, or idea. Considering
lists and their contexts helps to contextualize information science
as a field concerned with enumerating useful contexts.
Wayne de Fremery teaches Korean literature and
bibliography at Sogang University in Seoul, Korea, where he develops
new technologies for investigating Korean literature and documentary
traditions, as well as information systems as cultural systems.
More at http://www.pwdef.info/index.html.
Sept 18: Cliffored LYNCH: The Impact, Priorities and Prospects for
Sustained Infrastructure Investment in Scholarly Communication.
More than thirty years
of sustained and strategic investment, largely by libraries, has
positioned the research and higher education communities to navigate
the disruption of the current pandemic to a considerable extent.
To see this graphically, imagine that the pandemic had occurred in
1985 or 1990 and consider the implications for the higher education
and research enterprises. We'll discuss some of these specific areas
of investment, and also where continued or new investments are needed
For background, read www.arl.org/news/a-case-for-continued-strategic-investments-by-research-libraries-to-advance-research-and-learning/.
Sept 25: 2:00-3:30 pm. UC Berkeley School of Information 102nd Birthday
A virtual event focused on women’s leadership at the School,
beginning with the School of Librarianship up through the present day.
This event is in conjunction with the campus-wide Berkeley 150W History
Project, which marks the 150th anniversary of the UC Regents’ unanimous
approval of a resolution that women be admitted to the University on
“equal terms in all respects with young men.” Visit the School of
Information's own 150W History Project page: https://www.ischool.berkeley.edu/about/history/150w.
Professor Steven Weber, associate dean and head of school,
will kick off the event with a welcome and an update on the school
during these unprecedented times. Professor and former dean Anno
Saxenian will give an overview of the history of women leadership at
the I School. They’ll be followed by Assistant Adjunct Professor Morgan
Ames (MIMS ’06), Associate Professor Jenna Burrell, Associate Professor
Kimiko Ryokai, and Assistant Professor Niloufar Salehi, who will present
their research areas of interests and passion projects. Time for
questions will follow.
Oct 2: Clifford LYNCH: Continuity of the Research Enterprise during the
Since April 2020, the Coalition for Networked Information
(the organization I lead) has been trying to understand the effects
of the pandemic on the research enterprise in the US, and what needs
to be done to strengthen research resilience in future. While questions
of instructional continuity have received a tremendous amount of media
attention (including plans for fall 2020 semesters at various
institutions), equally important questions about the research enterprise
have gotten much less consideration. CNI convened a series of roundtables
in April 2020 to discuss developments with representatives from our
member institutions; the report of these conversations can be found at:
An additional series of roundtables are scheduled for mid-September and a report on those will also be placed on the CNI web site.
Oct 9: Tim TANGHERLINI: Conspiracy in the Time of Corona: An Automated
Pipeline for Narrative Framework Discovery on Covid-19 Conspiracy Theories.
We focus on deriving the underlying generative
narrative frameworks in social media posts related to Covid-19
conspiracy theories. Building on earlier work on conspiracies and
conspiracy theories, we present an automated pipeline that discovers
and aggregates the central actants (people, institutions, places,
things) and the interactant relationships that allow us to understand
the complex interconnections that narrators build as they move toward
creating monological narratives explaining phenomena such as the
Covid-19 pandemic. Our model operationalizes aspects of narrative
theories first presented by Algirdas Greimas, Joshua Labov and William
Waletzky, and Alan Dundes. In this work, we explore the interactions in
social media of (i) pre-existing conspiracy theories, such as the
globalist cabal behind the pandemic, (ii) emerging conspiracy theories,
such as the role 5G telecommunications plays in triggering the virus,
and (iii) the intersection or absorption of narratives into totalizing
conspiracy theories, such as Q-Anon.
Tim Tangherlini is a professor in the Dept of
Scandinavian, and the graduate advisor for the Program in Folklore,
at UC Berkeley. His work focuses on computational folkloristics--the
data-driven analysis of traditional expressive forms and their
circulation on and across social networks. Recent articles include a
study of Pizzagate and Bridgegate (PlosOne 2020), and explorations of
text reuse in a large corpus of Danish legends. His research has been
supported by the NSF, the NIH, the NEH, the ACLS, the JS Guggenheim
foundation, and Google. More at scandinavian.berkeley.edu/welcome-our-new-professor-timothy-tangherlini/.
Oct 16: Clifford LYNCH: The Re-emergence of Scientific Nationalism, The
Growth of Supra-Institutional Collaborations, and Implications for
Scholarly Communication: Conflicting Trends
There are several important developments currently taking
place that have broad implications for higher education, the research
enterprise, and scholarly communication (particularly in the sciences.
The first might be described as the re-emergence of scientific nationalism,
driven largely by government policies and geopolitics; some might
characterize it as an aspect of a new cold war. Curiously, memories
about what happened during previous outbreaks of scientific nationalism
seem to be very poor, and it's worth asking questions about how much
we can learn from this history.
A second and contrary trend is based on the
pandemic-driven move to virtual environments for classes, seminars
(including this one), and scholarly conferences. This is changing both
the inter-institutional and international dynamics of scholarly
communication (particularly the sharing of early results) and
collaboration in ways that are still far from clear, and it remains
to be seen how much of this will persist as the pandemic eventually wanes.
I'll discuss both of these trends and how they conflict
with each other, and seek seminar participants' views on potential
outcomes. Note that these are very preliminary ideas.
Oct 23: Daniel PITTI, University of Virginia: The Social Networks and
Archival Context Cooperative (SNAC): What, Who, and How.
The SNAC Cooperative began as a research and demonstration project in 2010, and in 2015 began a transition to an ongoing cooperative program. The presentation will be divided into three short segments, with each followed by discussion. The first segment will describe the public historical research reference resource that is being cooperatively built and maintained. It will cover the nature and quantity of the content and a demonstration of functional features. The second segment will describe the institutional members, and how the archivists, librarians and volunteers are working together to build and maintain SNAC. The final segment will describe the technology platform and maintenance interface (manual editing and API), and will demonstrate tools being developed, including a SNAC extension to OpenRefine.
Daniel Pitti is the Director of the Social Networks and Archival Context (SNAC) Cooperative at the University of Virginia. Pitti currently also serves as the chair/président of the International Council on Archives Experts Group on Archival Description, charged with developing an archival description conceptual model called Records in Contexts (RiC). From 1993-2010, Pitti served as the chief technical architect of Encoded Archival Description (EAD, an international standard for encoding archival guides, and Encoded Archival Context-Corporate Bodies, Persons, and Families (EAC-CPF), an international standard for encoding archival descriptions of persons, organizations, and families. From 1997-2017, Pitti served as the Associate Director of the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities at the University of Virginia.
Oct 30: Salwa ISMAIL, University Library and Jenn STRINGER, CIO:
Libraries and Campus IT - Collaborations with a Purpose.
As more information resources become increasingly
accessible through campus-wide networks, management of access to
these information resources often becomes a shared responsibility
of libraries and campus IT. Collaborative strategies are needed
to ensure optimum use of resources and services to meet faculty,
student, and researcher needs effectively. This seminar talk will
focus on discussing collaborative and shared experiences from efforts
between the Library and the Office of the Chief Information Officer
Information Services and Technology Division
to provide users with robust access
to digital and data scholarship and resources, handling privacy
mandates and policies, and international access to scholarly
resources. It will also discuss how these partnerships are vital
to the successful development of initiatives and services that are
enterprise and resilient.
Salwa Ismail is Associate University Librarian
for Digital Initiatives and Information Technology
Associate CIO for UC Berkeley Library. Sne leads the Library’s
reimagined and rapidly expanding Digital Lifecycle Program (DLP),
the Library IT department, and Interlibrary Services.i
Jenn Stringer is Associate Vicew Chancellor for
IT and Chief Information Officer. More at technology.berkeley.edu/meet-jenn.
Nov 6: Elaine SEDENBERG, Facebook: Integrating Research into Real-World
Integrating Research into Real-World Policy: Elaine
Sedenberg (I School PhD 2019) returns to discuss how information research,
including her own dissertation, influence her current role as a Privacy
and Data Policy Manager at Facebook leading global research and academic
engagement. Elaine will discuss the literature around corporate research,
her experience in practice, and strategies for audience members on making
their work more readily accessible to those in policymaking practice.
Elaine Sedenberg leads global research and academic
engagement for Facebook’s Privacy and Data Policy team. She has a Ph.D.
from the Berkeley School of Information, where she completed her
dissertation “Information-intensive innovation: the changing role of
the private firm in the research ecosystem through the study of
biosensed data.” Elaine’s research challenges the theory of linear
innovation, and explores how research strategy, practice, and data
policies intersect within a modern information firm. She is a 2018–2021
Affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at
Harvard University. More at www.ischool.berkeley.edu/events/2020/facebook-integrating-research-real-world-policy.
Nov 13: Howard BESSER, New York University: Digital Privacy Training.
Almost every week the media reports another
large-scale digital privacy
attack. Most recently reports have focused on election hacking and
hospital ransomware, but in the pre-COVID world we heard frequent reports
of massive digital privacy attacks on email providers, governmental
agencies, universities, political campaigns, health care companies, and
other targets. Many individuals recognize data breeches and hacks as an
ongoing problem, but only know very few of the steps that they can take to
protect their own privacy.
This Talk will cover privacy-protection measures taught
as part of as the recently-ended 3-year $450,000 IMLS-funded project
to intensively train
librarians to go out into their communities and make those communities
more aware of privacy threats, and to train community members in tools and
habits that will offer protection against various types of threats. The
Talk will cover methods for the 4-6 month training of these Privacy
Advocates in techology-based tools, in discourse and advocacy, and in
community engagement. It will also discuss the various types of threats,
and a variety of tools designed to mitigate some of those threats.
The presentation will highlight activities undertaken
by the 100 trained
Privacy Advocates, and show projects they have completed both during and
after the training. This includes: guides, training materials, privacy
evaluations of library vendors, outreach plans, etc.
The Talk will highlight the recruitment methods
used to engage over 50%
BIPOC as trainees (in a field where less than 17% of professionals are
BIPOC). It will also report on the perceived effectiveness of the various
instructional methods and delivery systems undertaken, and what topics the
trainees felt were most relevant to their constituent communities.
The presentation will also discuss the a new
follow-up IMLS grant and the variety of methods it plans to use to
sustain the network of Privacy Advocates.
Ample time will be allowed for an open discussion on general
digital privacy issues, instructional methods for teaching privacy, outreach
to communities particularly vulnerable to corporate or governmental privacy
intrusions, and building cohorts of lifelong learners who continue to
collaborate on digital privacy issues.
Howard Besser is a retired UCLA Professor of
Information Studies who is currently Professor of Cinema Studies at NYU,
and Founding Director of the
Moving Image Archiving & Preservation MA Program. His work over the past
35 years has emphasized policy issues (copyright, privacy), technology
issues (image and multimedia databases), metadata (Dublin Core, METS,
PREMIS), media archiving and preservation (Personal Digital Archiving,
museum time-based media conservation), and teaching with technology
(distance learning). He is a graduate of South Hall. More at besser.tsoa.nyu.edu/howard/
Nov 20: Michael BUCKLAND: Book Talk: Ideology and Libraries.
In 1950 our alumnus Robert Gitler '31 went to
Japan to found Japan's first college-level school of librarianship.
In the 1990s I recorded and edited his reminiscences, published as
Robert Gitler and the Japan Library School (Scarecrow, 1999).
However, curiosity about his improbable success led me continue to
the Allied occupation of Japan more closely, and also California's own
library history, the use of libraries in diplomacy, and this School's
role. Also, more generally, how and why do library services differ
within and between cultural contexts? And how valid is the supposed
relationship between public libraries and democracy?
And what is implied for the future of school's of information by
present challenges and discontents?
The outcome, completed with
the help of former Visiting Scholar Masaya Takayama, is
Ideology and Libraries: California, Diplomacy, and Occupied Japan
1945-1952 (Rowman & Littlefield, out later this month.)
I will summarize what was found.
Nov 27: Thanksgiving: No Seminar meeting.
Dec 4: Last meeting of the Semester. This will complete the 30th
year of the Seminar.
Clifford LYNCH: 2020-2021 Networked
Information Landscape Survey and Prospect.
In my role as Director of the Coalition for Networked
Information (CNI), I give a plenary at the December membership meeting
which includes a landscape summary and a look to the future (videos of
this are publicly available after the session). In recent years, I've
greatly benefited from previewing parts this with the seminar,
exploring selected issues in a setting where they can be examined and
discussed in greater depth, and placed in a broader context. In this
concluding session of the seminar, I'll once again reprise this process,
which should be unusually challenging given the developments of the past
year, and the uncertainties characterizing the coming years. Expect to
see some of the themes that I've discussed in presentations earlier in
the semester resurfacing in today's discussion.
The Seminar will resume for the Spring Semester on Jan 22.
2020 schedule and summaries. Spring
2021 schedule and summaries.