Libraries get future-ready while rising to the challenges of today

Information professionals share their latest projects and innovations at this year's Internet Librarian International conference (Olympia Conference Centre, London, 15-16 October 2013).

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The conference theme for this year’s Internet Librarian International (ILI) is ‘smart solutions to real challenges’. According to conference co-chair Marydee Ojala, “it's no surprise that information professionals face a host of challenges. Our rapidly evolving environments are fuelled by changes in technology, scarce economic resources, abundance of web-based information, and heightened user expectations. It's important for internet librarians to anticipate tomorrow's challenges, not simply respond to today's.”

ILI’s emphasis on practical case studies is part of the appeal of the conference, with presentations that are grounded in the real world – ranging from Emporia State University’s use of augmented reality (via free mobile software) to a partnership of Swedish libraries who have used virtual conference technology to encourage interactivity for both staff and users, to revolutionary library websites from Imperial College London and Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden, and many more!

The conference also features a lively Sponsor Showcase with more than 30 organisations demonstrating a range of global information products and services.

The conference itself features 50 sessions, panels and case studies, and 90 global speakers. To enable delegates to focus on the topics that are of particular interest, the conference is split into six tracks:

  • Transformative Technologies, including sessions from technology analyst and trend spotter Joe Murphy; Swedish County Libraries in Sörmland, Örebro and Västmanland; and Chalmers University of Technology.  
  • Connecting with Community and Customers. This track will explore new ways to engage with users and features contributions from Bibliotheekservice Fryslân in the Netherlands, the UK’s Wellcome Trust, Denmark’s Politiken newspaper, and the National University of Ireland.  
  • New Resources and New Services – the latest in research, privacy and e-resources, with contributions from University of California Berkeley, Imperial College London, and the ever popular Phil Bradley.
  • Marketing and impact. This track looks at how to promote services and collections, and explores new routes to information literacy. Speakers include the University of Sunderland, Uppsala University library, and Purdue University.
  • Search, Discovery and Data – this track focuses on how users are searching, and what are they looking for. Delegates can also join in with ILI’s first ever ‘Search Slam’, featuring Marydee Ojala and Phil Bradley, and the track also looks at the latest developments for Data Librarians, and issues and solutions for web-scale discovery.
  • The New Professional; Skills and Roles – this track concentrates on careers and how to develop them. An international panel of speakers will discuss what information professionals need to ensure an engaging and successful career.

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