RISS session 2016

Conference Theme: Connections. Collaboration. Community.
RISS Theme: Connecting Reference to the Wider Community

Reference and Information Services librarians are key players in communities' access to information. Libraries have differing mandates, but all share an interest in expanding their reference, research, and information services. Regardless of type of library—public, academic, government, research institute, art, medical, law, school, and corporate—providing reference is a core activity. Reference, however, is changing.

In this session, we look for best practices in connecting with unserved or under-served communities, innovative programmes to contact new user groups, and new roles that connect reference with the wider community. Perhaps your library is developing links with strategic partners outside the library or collaborating with the private sector or reaching out to non-library users in a creative fashion or seeking to embed librarians other places in the organization. Share your experiences and insights during the World Library and Information Congress in Columbus Ohio, 13-19 August 2016.

Possible topics:

  1.  Impact of changing information/technology environments
  2.  Partnering internally
  3.  Partnering externally
  4.  Demonstrating value through reference services
  5.  Connecting with unserved populations
  6.  Connecting with under-served populations
  7.  Contacting new user groups
  8.  Where reference fits in the modern library
  9.  Marketing reference services
  10.  Embedding librarians
  11.  Personal librarian and Consulting librarians
  12.  Contemporary roles for reference librarians
  13.  Repositioning reference services
  14. Reorganizing reference areas
  15. Linking research to collections
  16. Participation in research projects
  17. Changing perceptions about reference and information services

Please send your abstracts to Najwa Hendrickse (najwa.Hendrickse@nlsa.ac.za) and Marydee Ojala (Marydee@xmission.com)


  • 5th  Feb 2016 Deadline for submitting Proposals for Papers plus a very brief biography of the Speaker(s)
  • 11th  March 2016 Successful Speakers will be notified, and IFLA forms completed by RISS and the Speakers
  • 15th  April 2016 Deadline for Abstract of Paper – to be approximately 300 words
  • 20th  May 2016 Deadline for submission of completed Paper to RISS. The paper should be no more than 3000 words in length. The paper should be in one of the IFLA official languages, but the conference language is English. If the paper is in any of the other official IFLA languages than English, an accompanying translation in English must be attached.
  • 17th  June 2016  Speakers must produce the Power Point presentation by this date.

Both abstracts and full papers should be submitted as an MS Word file by e-mail.  Proposed papers must be original and not have been published elsewhere.  

Important Note:

All expenses, including registration for the congress, travel, accommodation, etc., are the responsibility of the authors /presenters. No financial support can be provided by IFLA or by RISS, but a special invitation can be issued to authors for the day of their presentation.

The RISS Committee looks forward to hearing from you with your Proposals for Papers.