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Speakers and Keynote Addresses

Keynote Speaker: Stephen Abram

Stephen Abram, MLS, is a strategy and direction planning consultant for libraries and the information industry as managing principal at Lighthouse Partners and Dysart & Jones. He is a renowned library trend watcher and innovator and author of Stephen’s Lighthouse blog, one of the most popular blogs in librarianship. He has been president of the Ontario Library Association, the Canadian Library Association and the Special Libraries Association. He received the 2011 CLA Outstanding Service to Librarianship Award in June 2011. He has held international executive leadership positions at Cengage Learning (Gale), SirsiDynix, Thomson, ProQuest Micromedia, and IHS. He was listed by Library Journal as one of the top 50 people influencing the future of libraries as one of the first LJ "Movers and Shakers." He speaks internationally on innovation, technology, marketing and strategic success in libraries and is the author of hundreds of articles and ALA Editions' bestselling Out Front with Stephen Abram.


Dr. Erik Mitchell

Dr. Mitchell is an Assistant Professor in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland and a Senior Research Fellow in the Information Policy and Access Center. Dr. Mitchell's background in library information technology includes fifteen years of experience working in academic library IT environments. Before joining the faculty at Maryland he was the Assistant Director of Technology Services at Wake Forest University. During his time at Wake Forest, Mitchell led several library IT initiatives including the migration of all library IT services to cloud-based platforms.

Dr. Mitchell's research focuses on library adoption of IT and the connections between information technology, information structure, and information use. He has experience designing and delivering online, in-person and hybrid courses in information organization, IT and library issues at the University of Maryland. He has published and presented widely on cloud computing, metadata and library IT including two workshops on cloud computing (Code4Lib 2010, LITA 2011) and an upcoming ALA publication on cloud computing in libraries (February 2013). In his time as a librarian, he worked on a number of digital curation projects including DigitalForsyth and a multi-institution project curating Civil War resources. He developed and launched http://libcc.org as a cloud-based virtual computing lab in Summer 2012 with support from Amazon.


Dr. Andre Vellino

Andre Vellino is associate professor in Information Studies at the University of Ottawa and adjunct research professor at the Institute of Cognitive Science at Carleton University. Prior to his appointment he was a Research Officer at the Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information at the NRC. His research interests include recommender systems for digital libraries, the automatic inference of metadata schemas for scientific research datasets and the cognitive science aspects of automated reasoning systems.



Dr. Raza Abidi

Raza Abidi is Professor of Computer Science and Director of Health Informatics at the Faculty of Computer Science, Dalhousie University. He leads the NICHE Research group that conducts interdisciplinary research in clinical decision support, personalized healthcare, patient-centered care, health data mining and mobile health. He is the principal investigator for a number of research projects that have yielded real-life innovative health informatics systems to improve patient care. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed research papers and has supervised over 60 graduate students. He serves as reviewer for international health informatics journals, conferences and research grants proposals, and is a member of various national and international advisory committees on health informatics. He is one of the chief architects of the Malaysian Tele-Healthcare national project, and has research collaborations in Switzerland, Spain, Thailand, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia. He is the receipent of the prestigious VHK International Award for Innovation in Medical Informatics together with 5 best paper awards for his research in healthcare knowledge management, clinical decision support systems and personalized patient education programs.


Sciverse Panel: Trends in Digital Libraries and Scientific Knowledge Discovery

This panel will cover the latest tools and techniques in the world of scholarly digital libraries, with a special focus on technology trends that make it easier to discover and share scientific knowledge and improve users' experience. The panel includes new APIs (e.g., SciVerse platform), visualization techniques (e.g., using Google maps to visualize articles/authors), social recommendations and information sharing and other related topics. The Information Without Borders will be launching the new apps created by Dalhousie MLIS and Computer Science students for the Sciverse platform. This Sciverse initiative was spearheaded by Dalhousie's Social Media Lab, who students are working on their apps in collaboration with.

Rolf Kwakkelaar, Content Innovation Manager at Elsevier, will also be giving a presentation on the Article of the Future initiative.


Rolf Kwakkelaar

Rolf Kwakkelaar started his career at Baan Company and is co-founder of Amsterdam based Open Solution Providers. Rolf joined Elsevier in 1996, initially responsible for digital library initiatives and consultancy in Japan and Asia Pacific. He was involved in development of Scopus linking features while stationed at Endeavor and after four years at the Singapore National Library Board rejoined Elsevier in 2012. He has worked with development partners ( including Dalhousie ) on Sciverse applications and uses the same technology in his current role of Content Innovation Manager.



Agnes MacNeil

Agnes MacNeil has a B.Sc. (Hons.) in math and computer science from Dalhousie University and Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and an M.B.A. and L.L.B. from the University of Alberta. Agnes is a member of the bar in Alberta, Ontario and Nova Scotia, and practiced litigation in Toronto, Ontario since 1989 until joining the Nova Scotia Department of Justice in 2004. She is now a Team Lead and Senior Solicitor with their civil litigation group. She has a strong interest in electronic records management and sat on the Steering Committee, Working Group and Evaluation Committees for the Toronto Courts pilot project for the electronic filing of court documents, and on the Steering Committee for the Ontario Integrated Justice Project which was to find a province wide electronic filing solution. She also was a member of the Ontario Rules Sub-committee whose mandate was to ensure the civil procedure rules allowed for the use of electronic documents in litigation. Agnes taught litigation in the Bar Course in Ontario for many years and now assists with the litigation skills component with the Nova Scotia Barristers Society. Her practice is primarily in the area of commercial litigation, administrative law and class actions which has necessitated managing large volumes of documents electronically.


Connie Michaelis

Connie Michaelis is the Director of the Corporate Information Management Program with the Province of Nova Scotia's Chief Information Office. In this role, she provides leadership and direction on information management for the Province of Nova Scotia. She is responsible for the development of information management strategies, policies, standards, and best practices in support of informed decision-making and the delivery of government's programs and services. Connie has as extensive portfolio of accomplishments in information management including the establishment of an information security program for the Province and the creation of the Province's first Information Management Strategy and Framework, raising the profile of information management throughout government. Currently she is focused on the advancement of Business Intelligence and the development of an Enterprise Content Management Program.


Closing Keynote: Geoff Flood

Geoff is the founder and the guiding force behind the continued growth of T4G Limited, a leading Canadian technology services firm. Geoff has provided the leadership, vision and strategic direction for the company since its inception. Geoff retains overall responsibility for strategy while ensuring that the individual business groups within T4G achieve their objectives. His experience and thought leadership, coupled with a robust knowledge of corporate finance and investment strategy, has enabled T4G to remain at the forefront of IT Professional Services firms.

Geoff was previously Chief Information Officer and Vice-President of Dylex Limited – a multidivisional specialty retailer with over 700 stores in North America. In this capacity, he had the executive responsibility for the information technology assets of the Dylex Group of companies.

Prior to joining Dylex, Geoff held the position of Information Systems Officer for George Weston Limited (Canada’s largest food processor and retailer) where he coordinated information systems activity across the Weston/Loblaw group of companies. Earlier at George Weston, he was accountable for strategic and corporate planning and financial reporting.

Geoff is actively involved in several boards and charitable organizations and has a specific interest in T4G’s philanthropic organization Future Focus which backs organizations with a track record of helping children succeed. Geoff is immediate past-President of the New Brunswick Information Technology Council and is currently co-Chairman of the Premiers Advisory Council on Technology.

Geoff holds an MBA in Finance from Queen’s University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from St. Francis Xavier University.

Geoff lives in Rothesay, New Brunswick. He is married and has three children.


Stephen AbramAnnouncing Stephen Abram as the keynote speaker for IWB 2013.
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SciverseSciverse app launch & panel discussion: trends in digital libraries and scientific knowledge discoveries.
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