Information Ethics and Policy Education


This year I’m not going to be able to make it to ASIS&T, but I am helping to organize a workshop. To anyone attending with an interest in information ethics and policy, I suggest that you sign-up. The call is listed below.

Title: Advancing Information Ethics and Policy Education: Designing Curriculum for Diverse Contexts
Date: October 14, 2016
Application Deadline: August 30, 2016
Participants Announced: September 1, 2016

Abstract: Please join us for a full-day, collaborative workshop focusing on teaching information ethics and policy.

The SIG IEP, with the support of SIG ED, is sponsoring a workshop on teaching information ethics and policy at the ASIS&T annual meeting. The workshop will be highly collaborative, with most of the day devoted to working groups focused on building curriculum ideas, pedagogical approaches, project ideas, and teaching tools. Each working group will be preceded by one or two very short presentations on the topic in order to spark discussion and collaboration. The goal of the workshop is to learn from other scholars and teachers of IEP about different approaches, topics, and teaching methods.

We are seeking participation from the broadest range of scholars and practitioners whose work includes, or relates to, information ethics and policy (broadly construed). Participation requires only registration and willingness to actively engage over the course of the workshop. We encourage, but do not require, participants to bring syllabi, reading lists, and other artifacts to share during the workshop. In addition, if you have a particularly novel, successful, or interesting approach, unit, assignment, or method for teaching ethics and policy and would like to do a very short (less than 10 minutes) presentation, please send an abstract (approx. 500 words) describing the presentation to Alan Rubel at (subject line: ASIS&T workshop) by August 30. We will select presentations by September 1, in time for conference early registration (which ends September 2, 2016).

Breaking Into Data-Spaces


One of my jobs as a Ph.D. student is to help Sean Googins with the Open Collaboration Data Factory (OCDF). A National Science Foundation (NSF) funded project, the OCDF is sponsoring a workshop at CSCW in February. The call is listed below.

Title: Breaking into new Data-Spaces: Infrastructure for Open Community Science
Date: February 27, 2016
Application Deadline: December 31, 2015
Conference: Website
Apply/Info: Breaking Into Data-Spaces 
Participants Announced: January 15, 2016

Abstract: Despite being easily accessible, open online community (OOC) data can be difficult to use effectively. In order to access and analyze large amounts of data, researchers must first become familiar with the meaning of data values. Then they must find a way to obtain and process the datasets to extract their desired vectors of behavior and content. This process is fraught with problems that are solved (through great difficulty) over and over again by each research team/lab that breaks into datasets for a new OOC.

In this workshop, we’ll experiment with documentation protocols and technologies that are designed to make the process of “breaking into” a new dataset more tractable for researchers studying open online communities. This workshop’s purpose is to bring together researchers to test these systems and discover problems and missed opportunities to support iteration. Participants will also be given the opportunity to use state-of-the-art documentation and technologies to break into a new collection of datasets.

Athletics and Libraries


One of my recent projects involves university research libraries and athletic programs in the SEC. It’s not surprising that athletics in a major conference are well-funded. It’s not surprising that they are growing either. What is surprising is that they are growing while library staff is declining and funding is stagnant.

So much for LibQUAL. Let no good deed go unpunished!

Unexpected Projects


A great thing about working for a university is how it affords opportunities to contribute to cool, unexpected projects. Last October, I was approached by the University of Missouri’s Journalism School about the Journalism and Women’s Symposium (JAWS). Growing out of a panel discussion at the university in the 1980s, the symposium has involved several high-profile journalists since its creation. It was also explained to me by J-School faculty that an effort was previously underway to interview founding JAWS members. A collection of interviews and the associated content is now provided online on a website that I helped to build. The majority of work was not mine, but it’s always rewarding to see a project come to fruition.