Quarterly Update

Carol Schuetz, editor

Emerging Technologies Section (ETS)


Geoffrey Morse, Editor

RUSA’s Emerging Technology Section is in full swing! Plan to join us at Midwinter for our Hot Topics discussion about digital assistants and AI. You’re also welcome at our Executive Committee meetings, where you can learn more about the ongoing work of the section. We also welcome award nominations and questions about the special items on our 2018 ballot.

We’re currently working on several online discussion topics for this spring. Is there a reference-related technology that you’re struggling with, interested in, or using with wild success? We want to hear about it! Send your thoughts to beth.boatright at ipfw dot edu.

Beth Boatright,
ETS Chair

Programs/Discussions at Midwinter

Answering the Questions Alexa Can’t: How are Digital Assistants and Artificial Intelligences Impacting Reference Services?

Description: As artificial intelligence rapidly develops, do digital assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home, and Apple’s Siri have a place in the reference world? Join the ETS Hot Topics in Electronic Reference Discussion Group for a 2-part conversation discussing the risks, benefits, and potential implications of these new technologies. Use #etsreftalk on Twitter to join the conversation during this session. The discussion will take place on Sunday, February 11 from 1:00-2:00 at the Colorado Convention Center in Room 207. All are welcome!

Call for Nominations for the ETS Achievement Award

ETS thrives due to the hard work and dedication of volunteers. Please take a few minutes to help us recognize the contributions and achievements of a member of RUSA’s Emerging Technologies Section (ETS) by nominating them for the ETS Achievement Award.

Nominations are being accepted now through January 5th for this year’s ETS Achievement Award. To nominate someone or to nominate yourself, please complete the nomination form and email to Jason Coleman, coleman@ksu.edu by January 5, 2018. Nominees must be a current member of ETS and must have been an active member for the past two years. This award, which recognizes excellence in service to RUSA’s Emerging Technologies in Reference section, will be presented at the ETS Chair’s Program during ALA Annual 2018 in New Orleans.

The recipient will have made either:

  1. A sustained contributions toward attaining the goals of ETS; or
  2. A single, significant contribution that has resulted in a positive impact upon the work of the section.

For more information and a list of recent recipients, see the ETS Achievement Award page.

Coming Soon on the 2018 ALA Ballot: Slate of Candidates and Bylaws Changes

The ETS Nominations Committee has put forward a slate of candidates for Vice-chair/Chair Elect, Member at Large, and Secretary; you can read a bit more about each position in a previous post. In the New Year, we’ll be sharing profiles of the candidates so that you can get to know these individuals ahead of the release of the ALA Ballot.

The Spring 2018 ballot will also include some proposed changes to the Section By-Laws, primarily related to re-envisioning the Member At Large roles,. These proposed changes, emerging from organizational changes at the division level earlier this year, were discussed at ETS Town Hall meetings over the summer, and are summarized in this document. We’ll have more information to share with you soon, but in the meantime if you have questions or comments, please feel free to contact Courtney McDonald, ETS Past Chair / Chair of the ETS Nominations Committee (crgreene at Indiana dot edu).

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