ASIS&T 2014 Board of Directors Election

Candidates:  President Elect

Nadia CaidiNadia Caidi

Nadia Caidi is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Information, University of Toronto. Trained in Linguistics and Communication from France, she then obtained an MLIS and Ph.D. from UCLA. Nadia’s research interests focus on information policy and community informatics. Her studies of information post 9/11, and on diasporic communities, have been funded by several grants from SSHRC (Canada). A longstanding and active member of ASIST, Nadia served as the Chair of SIG-III, the co-Chair of SIG-IFP, the co-organizer (with Michel Menou) of the Global Information Village Plaza (2001-04). She received the James M. Cretsos Leadership Award in 2006. Nadia was the President of the Canadian Association for Information Science in 2010-11.

What if we were to finally come to terms with the fact that ASIS&T is THE home for members of the Information Science and Technology community? What “work” do we want ASIST-as-our-home to do for us? While taking stock of what ASIS&T does well (annual conferences, summits and webinars, the work of the SIGs, the awards and publications), one cannot overlook the missed opportunities. ASIS&T’s membership remains strong, but who are its audience(s)? What environment does ASIS&T foster? What is the nature and level of intellectual engagement about our field/discipline? 

As President, I would challenge us all to lend our expertise and sensibilities to the task of (re-) positioning ASIS&T as a leading, dynamic, and highly relevant organization:

1) Our members: Let us put to the test some of our field’s interesting propositions around collaborative information practices, community engagement, or data analytics: How would they help us provide better services to our members (e.g., mentorship opportunities for emerging scholars; fostering of interactions and intellectual engagement beyond the annual conferences)?

2) (Re-)Investing in Education. ASIS&T could benefit from forging alliances and partnerships with the likes of ALISE and the iCaucus. Collectively, let’s position ourselves as incubators for research on issues that define our times and are priorities for our discipline and profession (e.g., higher education trends, information ethics, digital literacy). 

3) Making intellectual vibrancy its core mandate. Let us sustain the conversation and keep our members intellectually engaged (e.g., students at all IST education programs could wrestle with a common theme each year, and come up with innovative and collaborative ways to address it; followed by open forums and interactive sessions).

4) Going global. Opportunities for collaboration and networking across SIGs, national borders, and cultures, would be further enhanced if we were to commit to hold an ASIS&T conference outside of North America on a regular basis (e.g., every five years). 


Jens-Erik MaiJens-Erik Mai

Jens-Erik Mai is professor at the University of Copenhagen, Royal School of Library and Information Science in Denmark. He was previously associate professor at the Faculty of Information, University of Toronto where he also served as Vice Dean and Acting Dean. Prior to that he was assistant professor at the Information School of the University of Washington where he co-directed the Center for Human-Information Interaction. He earned his Ph.D. in Library and Information Science from the University of Texas at Austin as a Fulbright Scholar and his Master and Bachelor degrees from the Royal School of Library and Information Science, Denmark.

He teaches classes in knowledge organization, information ethics, and knowledge media – and he writes papers about classification, the nature of information, trust and authority, and the design of controlled vocabularies. 

Jens-Erik currently serves ASIS&T as a member of the Board of Directors, he has been chair of SIG/CR, a member of the SIG Cabinet Steering Committee, and chaired the Book of the Year Award. He was the Conference Chair for iConference 2012 held in Toronto and is the Conference Chair for the 77th ASIS&T Annual Meeting 2014 to be held in Seattle.

I have served on the ASIS&T Board for the past three years (2012-2014) and I would like to continue the work the Board has started to increase the membership and create a more internationally focused association. The information field is expanding tremendously these years; many schools are growing, the demand for information professionals is on the rise, information ideas and concepts has entered mainstream consciousness, new information problems arises on a daily basis, and the need for information centered inter-disciplinary discourses is higher than ever. ASIS&T should play a central role in this international field of information issues and problems.

In the coming years, ASIS&T should continue its focus on revitalizing the organization by:
  - continuing to grow the association internationally,
  - exploring strategic alliances with other organizations in the information field,
  - strengthening the annual conference’s depth and breadth,
  - diversifying ASIS&T sponsored publications, and
  - reviewing the organizational structure of the association.
The goal of these efforts should be to create a broad and inclusive organization that embraces the entire scope of the information field as it looks today, while strengthening ASIS&T’s position as a leader in the information science research landscape.

More information about me on my website:

Candidates:  Director at Large (2 will be elected)

Chirag ShawChirag Shah

Dr. Chirag Shah is assistant professor of Information Science and an affiliate member of Computer Science at Rutgers University. His research interests include studies of interactive information retrieval/seeking, especially in the context of online social networks and collaborations, contextual information mining, and applications of social media services for exploring critical socio-political issues. He is also interested in various theoretical and practical aspects of information as a dynamic construct, and online information propagation.

Dr. Shah received his PhD in Information Science from UNC Chapel Hill. He holds an MTech, Computer Science & Engineering from IIT Madras, India and an MS, Computer Science from UMass Amherst. He has published and talked extensively on topics related to social and collaborative information seeking, including a book published by Springer. He regularly presents his work at ASIS&T and publishes in JASIST.

Since joining ASIS&T as a student in 2008, Dr. Shah has attended every Annual Meeting (AM), often as a speaker and some time as a moderator or an organizer. He has reviewed for both ASIS&T and JASIST since 2009. He was the Chair of posters/demos/videos track for ASIS&T 2011 AM and Co-chair of the Interaction track (papers, posters, demos, videos) for ASIS&T 2012 AM. Currently he serves as the Student Chapters Representative to ASIS&T Board, Chair of NJ ASIS&T, and faculty advisor to Rutgers student chapter of ASIS&T. He is the recipient of ASIS&T James M. Cretsos Leadership Award 2013.

Since joining ASIS&T as a student in 2008, this organization has been in the lifeblood of my professional career. It has given me a platform for presenting my research and connecting with my colleagues in the field. My connections have only deepened over the years as I have found my professional home in AS&ST. This is where I interact with colleagues in my field, creating lifelong relations; this is where I present my research works and receive valuable feedback; and this is where I see the next generation, including my students, starting their professional careers just as I did.

Having recognized the vital role that ASIS&T plays in the fields of Information Science and Library Science, and the impact that it can make on scholars and practitioners in these fields, if elected as a Director-at-Large, my focus will be on three primary aspects of the organization: 

1. Providing more affordable and welcoming starting steps for students and new faculty. Being in these two roles in the recent past and present, I recognize the importance of feeling included, encouraged, and empowered. That is why I started new faculty lunch at Annual Meetings and an email list for early career professionals. As a Director-at-Large, I will work hard to make such unofficial efforts to official and important to ASIS&T operations.

2. Increasing diversity and inclusion. Our recent name change is a strong indicative of how we position ourselves in a global market. The participation from several regions of the world, however, is still not at par with that from North American members. There is also a greater need to include masters and undergraduate students in our programs and activities. As a Director-at-Large, I will draw from my experiences as the Student Chapters Representative to ASIS&T Board for advancing our diversity and inclusion policies.

3. Expanding ASIS&T reach and presence. While ASIS&T has been around for more than 75 years, the field of information science is still emerging and getting recognition it deserves. It is important more than ever before to make the world notice us, be touched by us, and join us in our mission to bring forth “the importance of information as a vital resource in a high-technology age and promote informed policy on national and international information issues by contributing to the formation of those policies.” As a Director-at-Large, I will push for a better presence of ASIS&T on the Web and social media, for creating connections with other professional societies such as ACM and IEEE, and for reaching out to faculty and students from the fields of research not currently prominent within ASIS&T.


Jamshid BeheshtiJamshid Beheshti

Jamshid Beheshti holds degrees in Mining Technology, History, and Library and Information Science, all from various Canadian institutions. He has taught at the School of Information Studies at McGill University for more than twenty five years, where he was appointed as the Director of the School for six years. He was also appointed as the Interim Dean and Associate Dean of the Faculty of Education at McGill University for five year. 

Jamshid has been the principal investigator and co-investigator on more than a dozen Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada grants, and in collaboration with colleagues has obtained several million dollars in research funds over the past decades. His publications have appeared in JASIS&T, Information Processing & Management, and Education for Information among other international journals. He has been a consultant on many projects with various organizations, including the National Library of Canada, the Institutes of Higher Education in Indonesia, Kuwait University, and the University of West Indies. His area of expertise in designing information systems for children and young adults has been the topic of his contributions in his recently co-edited books, The Information Behavior of a New Generation: Children and Teens in the 21st Century (with Andrew Large, 2013), and New Directions in Children’s and Adolescents’ Information Behavior Research (with Dania Bilal, in press). 

My international experience along with my service record in Canada as the Past President of the Canadian Association for Information Science, and in the US as the active member of ASIS&T for three decades, including the Past Chair of SIGHCI, provide me with an understanding of issues and challenges facing our field.

If elected as the Director at Large, I would attempt to expand our presence and increase the association’s membership in the US, Canada, and around the world:

– By collaborating with the Web Presence Task Force to develop forums for discussions using the social media to solicit the opinions and views of our colleagues in industry and in academia, the objective of which would be to create more direct channels of communication among information scientists; 

– By working closely with the Communications & Publications Committee to propose a new free open access publication to augment the existing ASIS&T publications, the objective of which would be to provide an efficient means for communicating research results;

– By working in partnership with the Information Science Education Committee to propose a free MOOC on ‘information science’, the objective of which would be to expand the base of our association among various disciplines.


Fidelia Ibekwe-SanJuanFidelia Ibekwe-SanJuan

Fidelia Ibekwe-SanJuan is a Professor of Information and Communication Sciences at the Jean Moulin University (JMU) in Lyon, France. Before joining JMU, she was Associate professor of Information and Communication Sciences at the University of Nancy (France). She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in French literatures obtained from the University of Port-Harcourt, Nigeria before completing a Masters degree in French contemporary literature at the Stendhal University, Grenoble, France. She then embarked on an academic career switch to Information Studies where she obtained a PhD in Information & Communication Studies with a specialisation in Information-Documentation from the Stendhal University in Grenoble (France). Her research interests span a wide range of problems: she first worked on information processing problems drawing upon methods from computational linguistics, text analytics, information visualization and information retrieval. Recently, Fidelia has been focusing on the history and foundations of information and communication sciences, on epistemology and the history of sciences and has been comparing anglophone and francophone conceptions of information and comunication studies. She has also been studying the impact of recent technological advances (open data, big data and web 2.0) on science and on the society. Since joining ASIST in 2009, Fidelia has served the association in many capacities: as conference paper reviewer; as chair of the European chapter of the ASIST (2011-2012) and currently its assembly representative and advisor; as a member of SIG H/FIS and currently its chair-elect; and as a member of the International Relations Committee. She obtained the New leader Award for 2012-2013 and has been instrumental in the European chapter’s winning the chapter of the year award for two consecutive years (2012-2013).


When I found ASIST and attended its annual conference as a new member, I knew I had found my “scientific home”. I have been impressed by the smooth and well-oiled operating procedures put in place, the efficiency of its officers and the welcoming and stimulating atmosphere that radiates within ASIST during the annual conferences. I have found ASIST to be one of the most vibrant and inclusive scientific societies it has been my luck to know. If elected as Director-at-large, I will work with ASIST’s officers to strengthen its current international course by:

1) reaching out to members and scholars beyond ASIST’s mainstream specialties in LIS who can have insights to offer in terms of scientific experience and approach to common problems the society is facing ; 

2) continuing to work within the International Relations Committee to broaden ASIST’s international status, in making ASIST known to parts of the world where it is less well known (non english speaking europe, Africa, Asia). Towards this goal, it will be pertinent to work towards reducing costs for attending the conference as this continues to be a concern for many members;

3) helping to improve ASIST’s link with the information practitioners worldwide who are our ambassadors in the private by promoting the organisation of jointly-sponsored sessions and panels during the AM or in other scientific events where ASIST can be associated; 

4) motivating younger scholars in getting involved in ASIST

5) ensuring that ASIST remains at the forefront of the societal challenges that our information-centric world brings forth.

I would be honored to serve as Director-at-large for ASIST, share my ideas, energy, and excitement, and work together with all members on initiatives that position ASIS&T as a leader in the field.


Boryung JuBoryung Ju

Boryung Ju is an associate professor at the School of Library & Information Science, Louisiana State University. She received her PhD in 2002 from the Florida State University and a MLIS from Indiana University. Her research areas include Human-Computer Interaction (Interface Design & Evaluation; User Modeling; Human Factors; Usability Analysis) and Knowledge Management (Knowledge Sharing; Distributed Scientific Collaboration; Knowledge Networks). Some of her current research projects are on the impacts of collaboration technologies on knowledge sharing and interaction design for video digital retrieval systems. She served as a Co-Chair of the 76th ASIS&T Annual Meeting in 2013, and has actively participated in numerous scholarly and professional organizations. She currently is the Managing Editor for the Journal of Information and Knowledge Management, and an editorial board member for the International Journal of Information Science Theory & Practice and the Journal of the Korean Society for Library and Information Science.

ASIS&T plays a pivotal role in advancing knowledge in information and technology related fields, and has a long and proud history as an intellectual hub for information science researchers and professionals. If elected as a Board member, I will focus on the following:

o Discussion of the creation of a Fellows of the ASIS&T program for the recognition of outstanding scholarly contributions in information science; similarly to established programs in the sciences. 

o Encouragement of collaboration by providing more opportunities for sharing and exchange research ideas at a regional level, e.g. through regional ASIS&T conferences.

o Furthering the internationalization of ASIS&T, by attracting more practitioners and faculty in particular in Asia and Europe.