Dubrovnik and Mljet, Croatia
2-7 June 2008
Inter-University Centre (http://www.iuc.hr/ )
Don Ivana Bulica 4, 20000 Dubrovnik, Croatia, and
Hotel Odisej, island Mljet, Pomena, Croatia (http://www.hotelodisej.hr)
Web site: http://www.ffos.hr/lida/
Email: lida@ffos.hr

The annual international conference and course Libraries in the Digital
Age (LIDA) addresses the changing and challenging environment for
libraries and information systems and services in the digital world. Since
its inception in 2000, LIDA has emphasized the examination of contemporary
problems, intriguing advances, innovative approaches and solutions. Each
year a different and ‘hot’ theme is addressed, divided in two parts; the
first part covers research and development and the second part addresses
advances in applications and practice. LIDA brings together researchers,
educators, practitioners, and developers from all over the world in a
forum for personal exchanges, discussions, and learning, made easier by
being held in memorable locations.

Themes LIDA 2008
Part I: Education and training in digital libraries

In a relatively short period of time, spanning less than two decades or
so, digital libraries became a global phenomenon, characterized by an
accelerated, explosive growth. Digital libraries are a subject of great
many activities worldwide. These include diverse practical applications,
research and development (R&D) on many fronts, continuing innovation,
policy formulations, management changes, and more. A number of fields are
involved, among the most prominent being information science,
librarianship, and computer science.
Considerable and rapidly growing amounts of funds are spent on practical
applications in building and operating a variety of digital library
collections, components and service and on R&D in digital libraries. Many
commercial enterprises are providing digital resources and software for
digital libraries. This all creates demands for well educated and trained
professionals in these areas.
However, the education and training for digital libraries is most often
based on apprentiship and practical courses and conferences without
receiving the same attention (and resources) of digital libraries
applications and other areas mentioned. A number of institutions are
teaching digital libraries modules and courses, or beginning to, and
struggling with this relatively new and volatile educational area. Many
practitioners are finding it hard to learn more and to keep up.
The goal of the first part of LIDA 2008 is to explore efforts, concepts
and ideas related to education and training of professionals, dealing with
the academic quality standards and practical training requirements for
digital libraries and in variety of fields and contexts related to
knowledge, values and skills needed for digital librarians. The general
aim is to help further development of current efforts, as well as
development of frameworks within which diverse efforts could be compared,
evaluated, and improved.

Contributions are invited covering the following topics (types described
•knowledge, values and skills of the digital librarian to be reflected in
educational offerings
•conceptual frameworks and methodological approaches to digital library
•instructional design, development, and evaluation of programs of study
and specialization for digital librarians in a variety of schools and on
different levels – existing and proposed
•convergence and place of digital library education in broader curricula
of library and information science, computer science, and other fields;
impact of digital library education on other parts of the curriculum
•examples of good practices of specific courses (or sequence of
courses)and programs related to various aspects of digital libraries and
digital library technology; examples of various modes of delivery
•continuing education and training in digital libraries oriented toward
practicing professionals
•student evaluation of digital library education, as well as expectations
and perceptions of professionals in continuing education courses and
•international aspects and cooperative opportunities in digital library
•benchmarking and evaluation of educational and training programs in
digital libraries
•cultural and social elements in digital library education.

Part II: Reference in digital environments

As access to electronic information through library Web pages has
proliferated in recent years, an increasing number of libraries have added
digital reference assistance to their list of user services. E-mail
reference has become an expected venue for asking reference questions,
having been included among the suite of information services for over 20
years. Live chat reference services are relatively new-comers, but have
already been successfully operating for over 10 years. Information seekers
are increasingly turning to virtual reference (also known as digital
reference) for the anonymity and convenience of remote access and for the
extended hours of operation, since many services operate 24/7/365. An
increasing number of libraries and information centers are now
experimenting with Instant Messaging, Text Messaging (SMS), and other
emerging modes for offering reference services to increasingly tech savvy
library users. Web 2.0 applications are opening new vistas for digital
library services including reference blogs and wikis. Digital reference
desks are appearing in virtual worlds such as Second Life. Although the
proliferation of these alternative methods for service delivery highlights
the need for research focused on understanding users and staff behavior
and impact on issues of satisfaction and success, their assessment poses
new challenges for researchers.

The goal of the second part of LIDA 2008 is to explore the totality of the
virtual reference environment (including live chat, e-mail, IM, and Web
2.0 reference initiatives) and its relationship to digital libraries.
Special attention will be on the evaluation of virtual reference services
from a variety of research perspectives and approaches. The general aim is
to concentrate on scholarship that increases our understanding of the
needs, interests, and experiences of users as well as
librarians/information providers in the context of virtual reference.

Invited are contributions (types described below) covering the following
•evaluation of various modes of digital library services
•application of theories and models in study of users and use of virtual
•application of theories and user information needs assessments for design
and development of digital reference systems
•assessment of the decision making process for users who choose virtual
reference over other modes (e.g., face-to-face, phone)
•advantages and disadvantages of different virtual reference modes •the
role of knowledge databases in digital reference
•sustainability and cost-effectiveness of virtual reference services
•evaluation of virtual reference consortia and comparison of service
•benchmarking service quality and development of evaluation standards in
virtual reference
•evaluation of advantages and disadvantages of different virtual reference
•assessment of the quality of interpersonal communication in virtual
•studies of accuracy and efficiency in virtual reference
•explorations of question negotiation in virtual environments
•issues in archiving digital reference questions.

Types of contributions

Invited are the following types of contributions:
1. Papers: research studies and reports on practices and advances that
will be presented at the conference and included on the conference Web
site. Papers of up to 4000 words in length should be submitted, following
the American Psychological Association (APA) style, followed, among
others, by the Journal of the American Society for Information Science and
Technology (JASIST) and Information Processing & Management (IP&M). The
papers will be refereed. All accepted contributions will be published in
on-line proceedings, as well as provided in the conference kit.
2. Posters: short graphic presentations on research, studies, advances,
examples, practices, or preliminary work that will be presented in a
special poster session. Awards will be given for Best Poster and Best
Student Poster. Proposals for posters should be submitted as a short, one
or two- page paper.
3. Demonstrations: live examples of working projects, services,
interfaces, commercial products, or developments-in-progress that will be
presented during the conference in specialized facilities or presented in
special demonstration sessions. These should involve some aspect of users
and use. Proposals for demonstration should provide short description and
a URL address, if available.
4. Workshops: two to four-hour sessions that will be tutorial and
educational in nature. Workshops will be presented before and after the
main part of the conference and will require separate fees, to be shared
with workshop organizers. Proposals for workshops should include a short
description, with indication of level and potential audience.
5. PhD Forum: short presentations by PhD students, particularly as related
to their dissertation, in a session organized by the European Chapter of
the American Society for Information Science and Technology (EC/ASIST);
help and responses by a panel of educators.

Submissions should be sent in electronic format (as an email attachment)
to Prof. Tatjana Aparac at taparac@ffos.hr. Inquires can also be addressed
to the Co-Chair of the conference Prof. Tefko Saracevic and Program Chairs
(for Part I Prof. Jeffrey Pomerantz and Prof. Anna Maria Tammaro
. and for Part II Prof. Marie L. Radford). Full contact information is
provided below. All submissions will be refereed.
For papers and workshops: 15 January 2008. Acceptance by 15 February 2008.
For demonstrations and posters: 1 February 2008. Acceptance by 1 March
Final submission for all accepted papers and posters: 15 March 2008.

Invitation to institutions
We are inviting libraries, information agencies, professional
organizations, publishers, and service providers to consider participation
at LIDA by providing a demonstration, workshop, or exhibit about their
products, services or advances, or by presenting a paper or poster about
their activities, as related to themes. Sponsorship of an event is also
invited. Institutions can benefit as well: we will provide course
materials to participants so that they can communicate and transfer topics
of interest to their institution. Thus, we are organizing LIDA to reach a
wider audience.

Conference contact information

Course co-directors:
Department of Information Sciences
Faculty of Philosophy; J.J. Strossmayer University
31000 Osijek, Croatia
(contact for general correspondence)

School of Communication, Information and Library Studies; Rutgers
New Brunswick, NJ, 08901 USA

Program chairs:
For Part I:
School of Information and Library Science
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3360, USA

Dipartimento dei Beni Culturali e dello Spettacolo
Sezione di Beni Librari
University of Parma
43100 Parma, Italy

For Part II:
School of Communication, Information and Library Studies; Rutgers
New Brunswick, NJ, 08901, USA

Organizing committee:
Department of Information Sciences
Faculty of Philosophy; J.J. Strossmayer University
31000 Osijek, Croatia

Local organizing committee:
Dubrovnik Libraries
20000 Dubrovnik, Croatia


The first part of LIDA 2008 will be held in Dubrovnik and for the second
part the conference will move to island Mljet, less than a two-hour ride
from Dubrovnik on a fast catamaran. Pre-conference workshops are planned
for 26 May 2008 in Dubrovnik and post-conference workshops for 31 May 2008
on Mljet.

Dubrovnik, Croatia is recognized as one of the World Cultural Heritage
sites by UNESCO. It is a walled city, preserved as it existed in medieval
times. A beautiful natural location on the Adriatic Sea, a lavish
architecture of squares, palaces, and churches, small, intriguing
hill-hugging streets, pedestrian-only traffic within the walls, outings to
the enchanting near-by islands - all these and more combine to make
Dubrovnik one of the most popular destinations in Europe. For Croatia see
http://www.croatia.hr/ and for Dubrovnik at

Mljet is one of the most enchanting islands in the Adriatic, a sea that
abounds with beautiful islands to start with. Hotel Odisej
(http://www.hotelodisej.hr) is in a small harbor. Near the hotel is the
entrance to Mljet National Park (http://www.np-mljet.hr/) with lush
vegetation surrounding three inland lakes, a small island with a monastery
in the middle lake, paths for walking, and spots for swimming in the blue
and green sea.
Marija Dalbello, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Library and Information Science
School of Communication, Information and Library Studies
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
4 Huntington Street
New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901-1071
Voice: 732.932.7500 / 8215
FAX: 732.932.6916
Internet: dalbello@scils.rutgers.edu

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