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SOIS and SLIS Team Up for WI Distinguished Lecture Series

Posted by on Wednesday, December 01, 2010 in Libraries in the News
Dr. Birger Hjørland, internationally renowned expert in knowledge organization was the keynote speaker at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s School of Information Studies (SOIS) and the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s School of Library and Information Science (SLIS)’ co-sponsored event on Friday, November 19, 2010.

The presentation will be the first in the Wisconsin Distinguished Lecture Series in Library and Information Science, a joint effort between SOIS and SLIS. The two library and information science programs will alternate sites every year with the first lecture being held this year at UWM’s Golda Meir Library. In 2011, the lecture will move to Madison.

This year’s presenter, Birger Hjørland is a professor in knowledge organization at the Royal School of Library and Information Science in Copenhagen, Denmark. He is currently a member of the editorial boards of Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology and Journal of Documentation. He is chair of the International Society for Knowledge Organization's Scientific Advisory Council and consulting editor of Knowledge Organization.  

His presentation will address the current state of library classification, including threats and challenges to the Dewey decimal classification (DDC) system and the Library of Congress. Hjørland feels that in order for these systems to survive, librarians will need to band together.

“Many researchers, managers and users believe that classification systems are not worth the effort, rather search engines can be improved without the heavy costs of providing metadata” he said. “This presentation will argue that classification is necessary at both the practical and the theoretical level, and it should not be seen in isolation from other challenges facing libraries.”

SOIS Interim Dean Hope A. Olson is very excited for Hjørland’s presentation and for the burgeoning partnership with the school’s sister institution in Madison. “We’re very happy to be working with SLIS on this prestigious lecture series,” she said. “Bringing in important names like Birger will only be an added benefit for students and alumni associated with both schools.”

The program is from 5 – 6:30 PM in the 4th Floor Conference Center at UWM’s Golda Meir Library. All events in the series are open to the public. For more information or to RSVP, please visit
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