I have been quite struck by Karen Fisher’s keynote at LILAC 2010, where she talked about her research on the use of the internet in public libraries in the US and her theories of information behaviour. She highlighted the importance of ‘mediators’ who often act as intermediaries helping other people find information they need. I saw a lot of myself in what she was saying. How often do librarians end up being the family researcher? Recently I have helped out family by editing their Facebook privacy settings, finding a recipe to make bird seed cake, tracing their Irish family history among other things. I enjoyed all our keynotes at this year’s conference, Tony Durcan, from Newcastle public library and Ralph Catts from University of Stirling who joined us for the entire conference and gave the final keynote on Wednesday morning, which was really well received. He urged us to carry out research into how information literacy interventions really makes a difference. I also really enjoyed the parallel sessions I chaired on the final morning, including a great workshop by Lorie Kloda and Alison Brettle about critical appraisal as a technique for evaluating research on information literacy. A lot of this workshop was really helpful for the refereeing work I do, for LILAC, but also for other journals.
Colleagues from Grand Valley State University – Jodi Tyron, Emily Frigo and Mary O’Kelly talked about using faculty focus groups to assess information literacy core competencies that had been developed by the library at their university. They were one of 57 international delegates who attended LILAC this year – 20 colleagues from the US no less but delegates came from 20 different countries! The conference committee got some great feedback from the delegates at the desk but we’ll be meeting soon for a proper debrief. Once I get back to work I’ll write up some more of the conference but the Irish hospitality was fantastic. Was this the best LILAC yet? Irish dancing, Bob Glass singing with Jerald and Padraig and a fantastic conference dinner at Dromoland Castle. All this, plus I got a holiday in Kerry! By the way, Sheila Webber has a great round up on LILAC bloggers.