The ALA Midwinter Meeting is quickly sneaking up on us. Some of you may be on their way to Seattle as we speak. This will be my first MW, as I’ve never been heavily involved in national committee work.
I’ve never been one to take half-steps into anything, so I’ll be hitting the Pacific Northwest with a lot on my plate. Here’s where you’ll find me:
LITA Happy Hour: I’ll be arriving in Seattle sometime Friday afternoon, so this seems like a good way to ease into Business Mode and touch base with all of you whom I haven’t seen (in person, at least) in a while.
Friday from 5 to 7 at Elephant and Castle.
Digital Literacy: Setting the Agenda: I’m really excited to be a part of the Office of Technology Policy’s Digital Literacy Task Force. This is your opportunity to learn what we’ve been up to and ask questions about how libraries of all types should tackle the issue of digital literacy.
Saturday in the Convention Center (TCC 304) from 1 to 2:30.
Digital Learning Center: One of the measures that the Task Force is supporting is the PLA Digital Learning Center, a web resource-in-progress designed to provide curated resources for end-users and a community of practice for trainers, librarians, and other educators. Project manager Jamie Hollier has fantastic plans for the site, but to get there it’s going to need broad support – particularly from public libraries.
Saturday at the Sheraton Seattle Hotel (Eagle Hall), from 4:30 to 5:30.
PLA Program Subcommittee: Here’s the biggie on my agenda. I’m part of the group helping to assemble the program for the 2014 PLA Conference in Indianapolis. I’m eager to bring some new types of programming into the mix, working to include explorations practical library skills, change management, and other methods for ensuring the place of the public library in the cultural marketplace. Please send me your suggestions for program ideas, and get your proposals in by the March 28th deadline.
Sunday, 1-5:30 (closed meeting)
Those are the big meeting I’m planning to attend. But there are a few big issues that I’d like to discuss with people at the conference.
Metrics: Finding new ways to quantify library data has been a major bugaboo for me for at least a few years now. There’s a sea of data out there that we can use to get a better picture of how our communities make use of our services. It’s just a matter of finding the right questions. Do you fancy yourself the Nate Silver of the library world? Find me at MW. Let’s talk.
Participatory Librarianship: All my work with the Chicagoland Library Unconference has had me thinking a lot about…well, new ways of being a practicing librarian. How do we make the patron-library transaction more participatory? Is there room for entrepreneurial thinking in the public sphere? How do we usher in new roles for libraries while staying true to the “classic” concepts of the profession. There’s a lot of stuff going on here.
The Midwinter Bump: Once again, I’d like to take a look at some of the major book awards chosen by ALA committees, and see what kind of effects they’ve had on sales. There were some clear bumps on many titles, both in terms of immediate sales figures and raising the baseline that construes an average sales week. Can you help me out? Send me an email if you’re on an award committee, and I’ll explain further.
Outside of all those categories, I’m simply looking forward to talking shop with anyone and everyone. Want to say hi? Tweet me, and we’ll meet up.