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IASSIST 2015 - Call for Papers

41st IASSIST Annual Conference
2–5 June 2015, Minneapolis, MN, USA

Bridging the Data Divide: Data in the International Context

The theme of our 2015 conference is Bridging the Data Divide: Data in the International Context. Going hand in hand with the well-known digital divide is a growing inequity in access to data. Increasing budget concerns have placed strains on governments, universities, and other institutions in the provision of data services. From the cancellation of the Statistical Abstract of the United States, to the controversy over the Canadian Census long form, to political barriers in the data collection process in some countries, access to data and the data divide presents organizational, economic and educational challenges to the community of data professionals worldwide.

As data professionals it is our role to demonstrate how access to data improves organizational standing and relevance, how shared infrastructure reduces the costs for agencies to setup data sharing platforms and how developing data literacy programs fits with the mission of our universities. This year, the international focus of IASSIST shines on how we can improve access to data for people across the globe.

We welcome submissions on the theme outlined above and encourage conference participants to propose papers and sessions that will be of interest to a diverse audience. To facilitate the organization and scheduling of sessions, three distinct tracks have been established. If you are unsure to which track your submission belongs or if you feel that it applies to more than one track, submit your proposal and if accepted, the Program Committee will find an appropriate fit.

Track 1: Research Data Management

  • Data management within the global research data ecosystem
  • Data archives and repositories in the global data ecosystem
  • Best practices in the global data ecosystem
  • Data archiving and publishing – issues and challenges
  • New data types and their management
  • Challenges in exchanging research data across disciplines
  • Data linkage in the creation of new social science data
  • Metadata enabling the interoperability of research data
  • Application of DDI, SDMX, other metadata schema, taxonomies or ontologies in research data management
  • Data management policies and workflow systems
  • Working with ethics review boards and research service offices

Track 2: Data Services Professional Development

  • Training challenges considering the variety of professional positions within the data profession, which includes data curators, data scientists, data librarians, data archivists, etc.
  • Providing data services with limited resources and budgetary constraints
  • Teaching users to work with research data
  • Data and statistical literacy
  • Data collection development in libraries and other institutions
  • Explorations of data across subject areas and geographic regions
  • Copyright clearance, privacy and confidential data
  • Interdisciplinarity – promoting the cross-use of data
  • Training researchers about research data management
  • Liaison librarians’ roles in research data

Track 3: Data Infrastructure and Applications

  • Encouraging cross-boundary (national, organizational) collaboration to support research data
  • New infrastructure requirements in the global data ecosystem
  • Infrastructure supporting Data Without Boundaries
  • Tools to develop and support new social science data
  • Crowdsourcing applications in producing new social science data
  • Data dives or hackathons
  • API development supporting research data management
  • Open data web services – benefits and challenges
  • Applications of research data visualization in the social sciences
  • Preservation tools for research data
  • Tools for data mining
  • Data technology platforms: cloud computing and open stack storage

Conference Formats

The Program Committee welcomes proposals for the following formats:

  • NEW: Paper proposal
    For the 2015 conference we will have a paper format in which presenters are required to submit an original research paper in advance of the conference and present and discuss its findings at the conference. We will select submissions based on proposals and the authors of accepted proposals are required to submit their final and complete papers by April 1, 2015. All papers will be eligible for publication consideration in an edition of IASSIST Quarterly. In addition, one paper will be selected as best paper with a prize of one free registration for a future IASSIST conference.
  • Individual presentation proposal
    Typically this format is a 15-20 minute talk ideally accompanied by a written paper. If your individual proposal is accepted, you will be grouped into an appropriate session with similar presentations.
  • Sessions proposal
    You may propose an entire session with a set of presenters and topics. The session proposal can take a variety of forms (e.g. a set of three to four presentations, a discussion panel, a discussion with the audience, etc.). If accepted, the person who proposed the session becomes the session organizer and is responsible for securing speakers and a chair.
  • Posters or demonstrations proposal
    Proposals in this category should identify the message being conveyed in the poster or the demonstration.
  • Pecha Kucha proposal
    A pecha kucha is a highly visual presentation that consists of 20 slides shown for 20 seconds each. Presentations in this category are timed and speakers are restricted to seven minutes. These are not your typical conference presentations. We encourage you to check out  for more information, and for an example take a look at Data Science for Social Good
  • Round table discussions proposals
    Round table discussions typically take place during lunch and have limited seating. Please indicate how you plan to share the output of your discussion to all of IASSIST when writing your proposal.

Session formats are not limited to the ideas above and session organizers are welcome to suggest other formats. All submissions should include the proposed title and an abstract no longer than 200 words (note: longer abstracts will be returned to be shortened before being considered). Please note that all presenters are required to register and pay the registration fee for the conference; registration for individual days will be available.

Under a separate call

  • Workshop proposals
    Successful proposals will blend lecture and active learning techniques. The conference planning committee will provide the necessary classroom space and computing supplies for workshops.  Typically workshops are half-day with 2-hour and 3-hour options. For more information about workshops, please contact Samantha Guss ( or Katharin Peter (
  • Call for Workshops (closed on December 12, 2014)

Deadline for submission: 21 November 2014 (extended to 26 Nov.)
Notification of acceptance: 16 January 2015

  • Questions about sessions/paper submissions may be sent to the Program Chairs (
  • Questions about workshop submissions may be sent to the Workshop Co-Coordinators, Samantha Guss ( or Katharin Peter (
  • Conference hashtag: #IASSIST15

***Submissions closed***

  • IASSIST Quarterly

    Publications Special issue: A pioneer data librarian
    Welcome to the special volume of the IASSIST Quarterly (IQ (37):1-4, 2013). This special issue started as exchange of ideas between Libbie Stephenson and Margaret Adams to collect


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