ASIS&T 2005 START ConferenceManager    

ASIS to ASIS&T: Has There Been a Change in the Conference Content?

Maureen L. Mackenzie, Ph.D.

Sparking Synergies: Bringing Research and Practice Together @ ASIST '05 (ASIS&T 2005)
Westin Charlotte, Charlotte, North Carolina, October 28 - November 2, 2005


The purpose of this study was to investigate whether there has been a change in the content of the papers published at the ASIS&T annual conference since the Board of Directorsí decision to change the associationís name in May of 2000. During the debate over the name change, both active support and concern emerged from members. Supporters of librarianship implied that the focus on technology might overwhelm the societyís focus on both librarianship and information science. The boardís decision was supported by a membership vote that reflected 69.7% support for the name change. It is now 2005 and some may suggest that the name change from ASIS to ASIS&T is not significant or offers minimal force behind the associationís research agenda. I suggest that the background on this board decision reflects intent and purpose that deserves recognition and study. To compare the research content both prior to and following the associationís name change in 2000, four years of conference papers were reviewed. 100% of the contributed papers for the years 1997, 1998, 2003 and 2004 form the source of comparison. The Chi-square non-parametric test was used to compare the results prior to the associationís name change (represented by conference papers published in 1997 and 1998) to after the May 2000 name change (represented by papers published in 2003 and 2004). The results of this study offer both an aggregate and a comparative view of the conference papers accepted for and presented at the annual conference. Quantitative results reveal a significant difference in the basic research presented at the conference since the boardís decision. What cannot yet be revealed is whether these differences were intentional and as a result of the boardís decision to expand the association to draw in practitioners.

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