2008 Fall Assembly


LAUC-B 2008 Fall Assembly - Minutes

Tuesday, November 18, 2008
8:30 - 10:00 AM
Morrison Library

I. Welcome (Beth Dupuis, Associate University Librarian for Educational
Initiatives and Director, Doe/Moffitt Libraries)

Assemblies encourage professional interaction and promote LAUC activities.

Budget forecast is dim. The Library should take this opportunity to be creative, perform
collaborative efforts and re-shape activities. New Directions is a step towards this,
recognizing what tools are available, what other libraries are doing. The LAUC-B 2009
conference encourages us to think of users, think outside of our own units. Dramatic
changes in next decade; we need to identify approaches and set goals. Economic crisis
broadly necessitates ingenuitive decision-making, which will help us all. Please share
your ideas of what can be done differently; encourage communication with supervisors,
AUL’s, councils, and colleagues.

II. Introduction of New LAUC-B Members
Char Booth, Doe/Moffitt Instructional Services
Marjorie Bryer, Bancroft
Laura Calverley, Engineering
Amy Croft, Bancroft
Sara Ferguson, Bancroft
Ellen Gilmore, Law
Anastasia Karel, Bancroft

Kendra Levine, Transportation Studies
Edna Lewis, Law
Dana Miller, Bancroft
Hilary Schiraldi, Business & Economics
John Shepard, Music
Sandy Tao, Biosciences
Elia Van Lith, Bancroft
David Uhlich, Bancroft

III. LAUC Statewide Fall Assembly at UCSF (December 3, 2008)
View the agenda and committee reports at http://lauc2008fallassembly.wordpress.com/

The program will focus on issues surrounding concepts of collaborative shared print and
distributed collection and archiving models. The presenters are Constance Malpas
(Program Officer, OCLC Research) and Roger Schonfeld (Manager of Research, Ithaka);
moderated by Emily Stambaugh (Manager, Shared Print, CDL), Jake Nadal (Preservation
Officer, UCLA), and Brian E.C. Schottlaender (Convener, University Librarians Group).

IV. LAUC-B Committee Reports

(View written reports online at http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/LAUC/minutes/ )

CAPA (M. Cochran): M. Cochran is outgoing Chair. James Eason, Chris Tarr, Manuel
Erviti (incoming Chair), Gary Peete, Lynn Jones, Nick Robinson, (2007-08). New
members 08-09: +Brian Quigley, Jane Rosario, Virginia Shih. (See online report for
2007-08 summary.)

Chair of Research (D. Rowan): I-Wei Wang, Marjorie Bryer, Susan Garbarino (LAUC
Statewide Representative), Shayee Khanaka, Imadeldin Abuelgasim. This Friday is
deadline for Townsend fellowship. (Nothing specific for librarians on the website; use the
forms that are available for the Assistant Professor fellowship.) Contacts for questions: 3-
6229 Teresa; Rachel 3-0882. Re-working the schedule so that the turnaround time isn’t as
brief next year.

LAUC research grants – deadline Jan 9, 2009.

Mentorship TF (D. Jan): Lucia Diamond, Susana Hinojosa, Heather Pena, and Saima
Fazli. Task Force report submitted to ExComm last week. Once confirmed, the report
will be posted to the LAUC-B website and will be submitted to the Berkeley Initiative for
Leadership and Diversity (BILD) project.

V. Chair's Report (Corliss Lee)
Introduction of the LAUC-B Executive Committee: A. Barone, M. Phillips, P. Atwood, J.
Nelson, D. Eifler, L. Ngo, S. Petrites, M. Cochran (outgoing ex officio), and M. Erviti
(incoming, ex officio).

Standard business of LAUC-B – CAPA, professional development events, mentoring,
Townsend Fellow, LAUC Research Grant, travel funds, LAUC Statewide committees,
Academic Library Senate Committee, meeting with the UL, four assemblies a year (2 by
LAUC-B and 2 for the Affiliated libraries), a conference every two years, meeting with
other LAUC Chairs, the Distinguished Librarians Award every two years – are all active
and going to plan.. Recent activities include: diversity, recruitment, and retention;
mentoring, New Directions, etc. The LAUC-B website will soon be moved to a new
platform. In addition, a LAUC-B blog is now live (see
http://blogs.lib.berkeley.edu/laucb.php ) and ExComm intends to populate a wiki with
procedural information for chairs and officers.

The next LAUC-B conference will take place on October 23, 2009 at the Clark Kerr
campus. The title is: “Student Library Users: Delivery what they need – the way they
want it.” Visit the website for regular updates and suggested readings:
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/LAUC/2009conference/

VI. Questions and Announcements
None
.
VII. Guest Speaker: Professor Jenna Burrell, School of Information (UCB)

ABSTRACT:
A Cross-Cultural Perspective on the Concept of Information: Insights from
Rural Uganda
With the rapid spread of the Internet and mobile phones into developing
regions there is great interest in the possibility for a global Information
Revolution that will provide answers, options, and opportunities to the
rural poor in areas of the Global South. This talk will focus on some of
the practical challenges of making this possibility a reality. Beyond the
well acknowledged issues of technology access and language literacy, my
recent fieldwork in Uganda raised questions about whether a coherent concept
of "information" exists cross-culturally. Rural Ugandans generally expected
assistance to come from a human source as 'advice' and 'encouragement'
rather than delivered in the impersonal format of 'information.' The main
challenge to providing information services to rural Ugandans in turn rested
upon whether the information delivered was not just relevant, but also
whether it was trustworthy and actionable. Whether information is
actionable related to what capital and what social connections were required
to make use of it, something the rural poor often have very little of.
Following from such insights I will describe a system I hope to install in
the near future - a toll-free phone hotline for rural Ugandans connected to
an information mediator who can provide personalized assistance. This
project will allow us to begin to capture information needs from the flow of
everyday life in these rural areas.

BRIEF NOTES:

(Also see a LAUC-B blog posting, which includes a link to Professor Burrell’s
PowerPoint presentation, at http://blogs.lib.berkeley.edu/laucb.php/2008/12/05/lauc-b-
fall-assembly-professor-jenna-bur .)

Exclusively working in Sub-Saharan Africa since her PhD. No word for “information” in
Uganda. “Information” was interpreted by interview subjects as “news” and “news” was
interpreted as various needs (schools, health, market prices for fish, etc. Mobile phone
usage is huge; will this become an information seeking device? Negotiating sharing and
usage of the mobile phone; how it makes an impact on daily life. 50 informal interviews
during two 4 month trips in 4 rural villages. Mobile phones in Uganda: 125k
subscriptions added per month in 2006-07. Phone services and equipment is a business
venture for small-scale entrepreneurs. Value to rural Ugandans: a) maintaining
connections within existing social network; b) coordinating trade/business activities; c)
saving money on transport (can relate simple messages to others via mobile phone vs.
getting in a taxi to a destination to speak in person). Demand was severely
underestimated.

Unrealized potential: could the phone become an information delivery device? Literacy
issues are a large challenge (numerous local dialects).

Information to fulfill needs is expected to come in the form of advice, likely from a
person. They cannot easily articulate information needs, and it is not perceived as an
explicit priority. Information could be useful, but must be actionable. For example, what
amount of money is required to act on some information?

Proposal to extend the utility of the phone: Advice Hotline with live person on the other
end. Utilizes educated intermediaries to gain access to information resources. Comparing
information sources; see questionbox.org, a project of the Open Mind NGO. (Project
already performed in India)

Q&A:

Cell phone towers: telecommunications is deregulated; a lot of competition from foreign
companies/investors.

Percentage of population can read/write? Very low, depends upon village. Education
ranges from 1st grade level through high school.

Her initial interest: Always interested in Africa. Working at Intel … took some of these
information ideas and decided to apply toward PhD studies.

Cell phones as a method of increasing status: More pragmatic; status was not identified as
a driving force.

Text messaging: Not utilized much. Soccer scores are popular deliverables.

Models of phones: Nokia brick phones, slightly outdated. Cheapest Nokia phone is the
most popular: durable and affordable.

Key information in these villages: radios, no newspaper services, bicycles were main
method of transport and, thus, sharing information. Motorbikes are common; not many
cars.

Usage by age: Mostly under 40 (mostly adults, 20-40; not many teenagers); almost
exclusively men.

Libraries in Uganda: University libraries, but not sure if there are public libraries. Internet
cafes are funded by NGO’s and have some form of impromptu library (not professionally
staffed).

High percentage of income is being spent on mobile phones and services. Can purchase
as little as 2 minutes of airtime (for approx. $0.50).

Use of information (and mobile phones) for anti-governmental activities: Power
dynamics … fish traders: supply and demand questions, as well as market value
information.

Has use of language/speech changed due to short conversations? Not really, but they
speak fast. Sometimes just checking in, not necessarily a lot of content. Very formal
greetings in person, but they don’t do this on the phone. Lots of health questions via
phone.