The 2nd ECIL (European Conference on Information Literacy) conference took place in Dubrovnik 20-23 October 2014, a true international event attracting some 500 delegates from 59 countries. Altogether there were over 100 speakers in various capacities from keynotes by professors Mike Eisenberg and David Bawden, to invited speakers Tefko Saracevic, Louise Limberg, Maria Carme-Torras, Andrew Whitworth, Ross Todd, Sheila Webber and Bill Johnston, to the presentation of papers in various formats as well as workshops, poster sessions, PechaKucha and panel sessions. The whole conference was well organized under the auspices of Serap Kurbanglu from Department of Information Management of Hacettepe University, Istanbul (last year’s conference) and Sonja Špiranec from Department of Information and Communication Sciences of Zagreb University.
Various thought-provoking views of the notion of Information Literacy came out in keynote talks as well as in talks by invited speakers, e.g. “the Big Six” (Eisenberg), “information fluency” (Bawden), radical IL (Whitworth), IL as a boundary object between information needs seeking and use and learning research (Limberg), IL as collaborative inquiry (Todd), IL as MIL (Unesco/Carme-Torras), and IL as a discipline in its own right (Webber & Johnston). These varying and sometimes contradictory views of IL led to lively discussions on the concept. One interpretation of this is that information literacy is no longer an interest solely within librarianship but has reached out into other professional, political and disciplinary fields of education, political science, sociology, economics, philosophy, etc. At the same time the majority of papers presented by conference delegates were authored by practicing (academic) librarians with an overall interest in various ways of teaching information literacy. The extended interests in information literacy among actors from various fields hold a potential for interesting new alliances in future research and practice related to information literacy.
The issue of the relationship between research and practice in information literacy was the topic of a panel by Sheila Webber, Ola Pilerot, Louise Limberg and Bill Johnston. Rich material from the ECIL conference is available at http://information-literacy.blogspot.se/2014/10/an-ecil2014-roundup.html
Next year’s ECIL conference will take place in Tallinn, Estonia, 19-22 October, http://ecil2015.ilconf.org/
Louise Limberg and Ola Pilerot