Lankes has been invited to give a lecture as part of the Lazerow Lecture series at the Pratt School of Information and Library Science on April 28, 5:30-6:30. The lecture series is supported by ISI Thomson. Here is the title and abstract.
Reference: An Island of Chaos in a Sea of OrderMuch of librarianship is about bringing order to the wilds of the information environment. Books, articles, media and documents are wrestled to the ground, branded with a classification and corralled onto a shelf (either virtually or physically). Reference started its existence as a bridge from a patron’s unordered view to a structured collection. However, as the amount of disordered information available to the average user has far outstripped cataloged collection, reference’s unique inductive nature has come to the fore. Reference has become a creative author and tool creator in the library. This lecture will explore the unique nature of reference in libraries, and examine the potential of reference to secure libraries place in the 21st century.