Saturday, 10:00-12:00 - 20-minute papers
Archival Theory and the Crisis

Rick Prelinger:
Collecting Strategies for the Anthropocene

Over the past several generations, archives have collected exuberantly, built infrastructure and tools to capture and curate the digital firehose, and exposed collections online to massive communities. It now seems likely that the conjunction of environmental and economic conditions that now enable these activities will realign and force a reconsideration of what, why and how archives collect and make records accessible. This paper will outline a taxonomy of possible scenarios from high-tech to primitivist, and discuss key questions: Can we maintain existing collections as we are now accustomed to, or should we "pack lightly" for a quick getaway? What sorts of existing and new collections should we prioritize? What "protective envelopes" around collections, and what partnerships with non-archival but persistent institutions are most likely to succeed? What do Nathaniel Hawthorne, Doris Lessing and Kim Stanley Robinson offer to this discussion? Do Mollison's permaculture principles offer actionable paths? Is this potential crisis well-timed to help remediate issues of over-representation and erasure in archives? How can we redefine the usefulness of archives in times of chronic environmental crisis? Finally, how might unavoidable constraint lead to new opportunities and capabilities?

Jen Hoyer and Nora Almeida:
Living Archives

The living archive is a system which reflects how social behavior and cultural production are part of the anthropocene. Through a refutation of conceptions of the anthropocene as a purely biophysical phenomenon that is alienated from cultural practice and of the archive as tied to a dominant historical narrative, we will introduce the living archive as an alternative representational, creative, and reactive space, and we will explore how this theory is enacted and invoked by the practices of Interference Archive, an independent community archive in Brooklyn, NY.

Jill Kubit:

DearTomorrow is building a community where people publicly share letters, photos and videos addressed to their children, family or future self about how they think about climate change, why its important and what new actions they will take. All messages are shared on deartomorrow.org and best messages are amplified through social platforms, traditional media, videos and public arts projects. We are working to establish an archive in an academic or public institution so children today can access the messages in the year 2050. DearTomorrow has been recently featured by Vox.com, Public Radio International, TED NYC, the MIT Climate CoLab, and Yale Climate Communications, among others. The project is built with the best insights and practices from behavioral science research and climate change communications, including the use of narrative storytelling and visual imagery, creating social norms and collective efficacy, and relying on trusted messengers. The project aims to collect 10,000 people and reach 20 million people with personal, hopeful, action-oriented messages about climate change action.

Aruna Magier:
Water, Land, and Forests: Documenting India’s Environmental Activism

This paper outlines one methodology for selecting, collecting, archiving, and making broadly accessible the documentation of environmental activism in South Asia. Focusing on online reports from Indian activist and advocacy NGOs, it highlights the ephemeral nature of this documentation and a collaborative framework for creating a lasting archive serving the needs of social science researchers, activists and practitioners.

Ben Goldman:
Things the Grandchildren Should Know: Archives and the Origin of an Ecocentric Future

To what extent should records which have a bearing on the natural world be the primary consideration in archival appraisal? This paper will assert the archivist’s role in telling the story of society's failure to avoid the destructive effects of climate change, explore the meaning of an ecocentric archives, and consider ways the archival profession might instigate a more hopeful, less ecologically destructive future society through its documentation strategies.

Saturday, 1:15-2:50 - 20-minute papers
Crisis and Survival

John Burgess:
Adaptability and Resilience: A Core LIS Value

Systems of ethics set the parameters of acceptable behavior, and clarify personal and professional priorities. How might incorporating resilience and adaptability as explicit core values reshape what constitutes acceptable behavior and priorities for the LIS profession?

Billy Templeton:
School Libraries and the Anthropocene: A Curricular Hail Mary to the Future

Public education has an obligation to prepare students to compete in a global environment that will be transformed by climate change. School libraries should be central to helping schools integrate climate change problem solving skills into all core curriculum areas.

Ellie Irons and Anne Percoco:
Next Epoch Seed Library: An Archive of Weedy Species

The Next Epoch Seed Library (NESL) reimagines the traditional seed bank for the coming Anthropocene. Rather than gathering and preserving agricultural heritage from the pre-Monsanto era, we focus on weedy species most likely to survive and thrive in a landscape dominated by human excess.

Fred Stoss:
Preparedness Matters: Library Roles in Planning for Disaster

Hurricanes, floods, blizzards, tornadoes, wildfires, chemical spills, mass shootings, terrorist attacks—headline-grabbing natural and manmade disasters resulting in harm to lives or property and disrupting normal patterns of living. Is your community prepared for such disasters? Is your library involved in assisting in those preparations? Human nature maintains a perception that “disasters will not happen to me.” However, reality stipulates asking fundamental questions: “How do I prepare?” “What steps must I take?” “What resources must I have that allow me, my family, and my community survives until help arrives?” Libraries and librarians can increase public awareness of the disaster cycle and take actions that ensure preparation and continuity plans, and increase opportunities changing that “disaster will not happen to me” mentality. Librarians use their skills and expertise and libraries provide facilities, and collections leading development of community-based disaster preparedness plans, and serve as focal points for community awareness and action by: distribution of information from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), state, and local emergency response agencies; host lectures and workshops by local first responders and emergency managers (September: National Preparedness Month and a tremendous time to host a series of programs and activities), exhibit disaster-preparedness-kits, create real and virtual bulletin boards and kiosks, and highlight pertinent resources in their collections.

Saturday, 2:50-3:30 - Five minute lightning talks with 15 minutes for discussion

Jan Zastrow:
Back to the Future: Everything Old is New Again

In a post-apocalyptic world without computers or digital information, we may return to our old ways as Keepers of Knowledge—memorization, documenting by hand, interviewing sources, creating indexes and using personal networks—and in a world without literacy, educating through singing, dancing and drawing, a throwback to learning in ancient times. In the way that characters in Fahrenheit 451 memorized entire books to counter the obliteration of literature by a dystopian government, tomorrow’s information professionals will undoubtedly adapt to future systems and infrastructures as well.

Jennifer Bonnet:
Engaging with the Human Dimensions of Climate Change

In the fall of 2013, an Anthropology professor and a Social Sciences & Humanities librarian designed a joint film series and dialogue on the human dimensions of climate change. Come hear about the evolution of the project and what we learned along the way.

Monica Berger and John Carey:
Open Scholarship and Climate Change: The Imperative for a New Information Ecosystem for the Anthropocene

Climate change scholars, particularly in the global south, need equal access to information resources and dissemination outlets. Sharing, especially of data, must become the norm. Librarians need to keep up with the policy-making and culture-changing discussions around (open) scholarship and understand the politics of (open) science. As much as there is green-washing, there is also open-washing. Climate change research is a prime locus where critical librarianship can shift the discourse. We want to push against the use of metrics to evaluate scholarship, indifference of faculty towards sharing their work, particularly their data, and encourage open peer-review. We can advocate for the changes that will support and accelerate local and global research on climate change that benefits all.

Robert Chen:
Enabling Interdisciplinary Use of Scientific Data on Human Interactions in the Environment

The NASA Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC) collects, acquires, curates, preserves, and disseminates scientific data to improve understanding of human interactions in the environment [1]. Providing access to more than 200 datasets within some 40 collections on topics ranging from Anthropogenic Biomes to Urban Spatial data, SEDAC selects, acquires, and develops data into products and services to meet the evolving needs of diverse scientific, decision-making, and educational communities.

Hannah Hamalainen:
Humanitarian Crisis Mapping in the Library

Crisis mappers -- volunteer amateur mappers and digital humanitarians -- utilize a variety of technical skills and information resources to create and edit digital maps that provide disaster relief support. This presentation looks at how the library community is currently playing a role in assisting these efforts -- and how we can continue these efforts in the future by leading introductory crisis relief mapping sessions, aiding in the development of structured data organization, and lending better geospatial training support for volunteer responders.

Sunday, 9:00-10:30 - 20-minute papers
Rethinking Libraries

Amy Brunvand:
Re-Localizing the Library: An Environmental Humanities Model

The emerging discipline of Environmental Humanities points the way towards a new librarianship of place, conceptualizing geographic spaces as local nodes within a global network. The profile of information used by Environmental Humanities scholars suggests a model for local/hyperlocal library collections that can promote resilient communities and counterbalance trends towards homogeneous, globalized information.

Jodi Shaw:
Climate Change, Libraries, and Survival Literacy: A Practical Guide

Given the inevitable collapse of the centralized infrastructure developed nations currently utilize to access life-giving resources, peaceable survival dictates that communities must transition to local, sustainable modes of production and distribution of resources, including food, water, waste “disposal,” energy and information. As anchors of local communities, public libraries can and should play a leading role in this transition; practical methods for doing so will be explored in this paper.

Jennifer Gunter King:
A Changing Library for Rising Tides

Libraries, archives and museums, as stewards of cultural heritage, are in it for the long term. But, to safeguard the artistic, historic and scientific resources they hold in trust for the public, libraries, archives and museums need to adapt to a world where change—and water—are the new normal. How do libraries, archives and museums prepare for rising sea levels? Conservative estimates forecast that the global sea level could rise by three feet by the end of this century. 34 6 percent (12,236 out of 35,364) of museums and related organizations are within 100 kilometers of the coast. Digitizing collections, and moving inland offer some reasonable strategies for rising seas. The Harold F. Johnson Library at Hampshire College strategy is to offer more than repository services to its community. It is restructuring its services to become a Knowledge Commons hub, combining traditional library, archive and art gallery resources alongside writing, speaking, quantitative, student advising, media and instructional technology resources. This case study offers a library as a hub as an alternate approach to the library as repository. This isn’t a full solution but is a strategy for libraries, archives and museums as they confront rising sea levels.

Jacob Berg, Angela Galvan, and Eamon Tewell:
Academic Libraries and the False Promises of Resiliency

The concept of resilience originated in the environmental disaster and natural hazards sphere, but its implications as a strategy within academic libraries and higher education have largely been left unaddressed. We will problematize resilience, demonstrating the relationships between it and structural issues in academic libraries, including librarian burnout, disaster capitalism, adjunctification, and feminized labor space, and offer concrete strategies, tools, and ideas for library and archive workers to resist the misapplication and false promises of resilience.

Sunday, 10:30-12:00 - 20-minute papers
Maintaining Access, Digital Resilience

Sarah Demb:
When the Lights Go Out: Digital Information and Existential Risk

Our paper will explore the feasibility of the pursuit of digital archives in a world simultaneously facing reduced natural resources, increased political instability and widespread economic inequality. At what point might the lack of access to written knowledge and to communications technology have catastrophic or existential effects?

Heather Christenson:
The Large-scale Digital Library and Response to the Anthropocene

Mass digitization of research library collections has created a huge shift in how library collections are developed and preserved. A large portion of the published record of human thought and knowledge, as accumulated in libraries, has made the leap into digital form, enabling a rich new variety of access and inquiry. We are just at the beginning of a potentially large collaborative step forward enabled by this newly-configured aggregate library collection, but the Anthropocene is beginning to kick in, a threat on many levels. As stewards of the legacy of knowledge, creativity, and wisdom housed in our digital library, it is our collective responsibility to shepherd this heritage through the disruption that may come, to support researchers exploring possibilities for human adaptation to climate change, and to arm those who are attempting to mitigate and stop the threat with the information they need to do so. This presentation will explore use cases for the mass digitized collection, consider how new services and forms of access can support a variety of uses, and engage with the dilemma of whether and how the aggregate collection can be sustained in the long run.

Sarah Lamdan:
Improving Access to Environmental Information and Records

Beyond greening libraries and improving the environmental efficacy in information transmission, environmental information itself, especially that created and collected by state, federal and local governments, plays a crucial role in the nation's environmental decision making process. There are major flaws in the current environmental information access scheme, and this talk describes those flaws and suggests improvements to increase environmental information access.

Robert Montoya:
Documenting Biodiversity: Information, Libraries, and Professional Ethics

Biodiversity databases are key resources for combatting environmental challenges. Climate change research, conservation studies, and taxonomy are deeply-intertwined endeavors that depend on such knowledge banks. *Accurate* nomenclature lists, and the associated taxon circumscriptions and species-specific information these lists aggregate, are necessary primary data for effective conservation efforts. Biodiversity data, among other things, are used to prioritize environmental interventions, articulate research agendas, and supplement climate change models. Despite much progress by bioinformaticians, roadblocks remain, including the proliferation of nomenclatural inconsistencies, vague taxonomic concepts, and limited access to the scientific literature upon which sound taxonomy depends. Information studies--and libraries in particular--must recognize their potential role in these conversation endeavors. With our knowledge of classification theories and expertise in information collocation systems, our discipline is primed to intervene and support these activities. But first, information studies must identify biodiversity initiatives as an integral professional and ethical concern. This paper proposes to accomplish three goals: to (1) articulate an *Eco-Informational Justice* imperative that can frame our intervention in environmental domains, (2) identify core concepts within the field of information studies that can help address these infrastructural concerns, and (3) advocate for such an emphasis in our educational institutions to sustain these efforts.

Sunday, 1:00-2:40 - 20-minute papers
Architectures of Resilience

Paulina Mickiewicz:
The Library of 2114

In 2014, Berlin-based Scottish visual artist, Katie Paterson, in collaboration with Bjorvika Utvikling, and the city of Oslo, began an art project called Future Library – Framtidsbiblioteket. “Future Library” is an art project that is intended to span over 100 years. A forest with one thousand trees has been planted in Nordmarka, Norway, in order to supply the paper to print an anthology of books that will be read in one hundred years time. “Between now and then, one writer every year will contribute a text, with the writings held in trust, unpublished, until 2114. Tending the forest and ensuring its preservation for the 100-year duration of the artwork finds a conceptual counterpoint in the invitation extended to each writer: to conceive and produce a work in the hopes of finding a receptive reader in an unknown future” (Paterson, 2014, Future Library). Although not initially conceived of as such by the artist herself, “Future Library” is an example of a generative infrastructure in the making. While it is a critical reflection and commentary on our old infrastructures of knowledge – (Will the book in paper format still exist in one hundred years time? If it does will there be anyone around to read it, or will there be anyone who can read it? Will reading remain what it is today?) – this paper will investigate how the project also poignantly highlights the relational qualities of infrastructures of knowledge in the making. “Future Library” emphasizes not only the evident complicated transfer of knowledge and ideas within a span of one hundred years time, but it also underscores the complexities of having a fledgling forest growing within a contemporary environmental context undergoing substantial climatic and ecological change.

Charlie Macquarie:
Libraries, Landscapes, Stewardship: The Library of Approximate Location

In this anthropocene moment, both hopeful and hopelessly bleak, what might happen if we diversify our commodity-value systems to reflect family histories, emotional landscapes, non-human agency, or an aesthetic of the commons? Reporting back from the most recent installations of the Library of Approximate Location — bombing ranges, mining excavations, land art sites, forest plantings — it’s clear that this can also be a moment to speculate critically about restructuring the terms of exchange around resource extraction and a networked world.

Eira Tansey, Ben Goldman, Tara Mazurczyk, and Nathan Piekielek:
Climate Control: Vulnerabilities of American Archives to Rising Seas, Hotter Days and More Powerful Storms

Mazurczyk, Piekielek, Goldman, and Tansey will discuss their current research concerning climate change risks to geographically vulnerable American archives. They will share their findings, challenges posed by a lack of comprehensive repository information, short and long-term effects of climate change on archival operations, and solicit feedback on further research directions.

Mark Wolfe:
Efficiency: Friend or Foe of Sustainability? Exploring the Impact of Jevons Paradox on the Archival Profession

Archival institutions may respond to climate change as they do when facing tight budgets: doing more with less. Whether adopting efficient archival practices or building repositories with green technologies, sustainability efforts can be undermined by an effect known as Jevons’ Paradox. The paradox occurs when improvements in efficiency to a system or process result in an increase, instead of a decrease, in a resource. The paradox can be seen in the advent of the PC and its failed promise of the paperless office. In addition to decades of inexpensive printing, the explosion of digital information portends an uncertain future for the sustainability of archival repositories.

Sunday, 2:40-3:30 - Five minute lightning talks with 15 minutes for discussion

Carla Leitao:
Foundation Landscapes of Massive Oblivion

Landscapes of MASSIVE OBLIVION archive excess, obsolete or ’toxic’ substances or objects. Entities to be ‘hidden away’, short to extreme long periods of time, which will cross unknown, future, civilizations - including: landfills, storage of radioactive materials, nuclear test areas and disassembly yards. They are one aspect of the Anthropocene era - the face of risk on otherwise continuous landscapes that make this new crust of the Earth largely built by humans. Dead archives to be opened in hundreds of thousands of years, when their artifacts have ‘dissipated’ enough, to no longer be ‘connective’ - they are the anti-network of contemporary time. To architects, these landscapes ask important questions about ‘foundation’, ‘appropriation’, ‘perception’, and ‘inhabitability’. Their often hidden character a resistance to being a ‘productive’ element of future ecosystems - as cultural forms disregard their integration into the mental maps of population and instead treat them as extraordinary or non-smooth with the future. How can architectural/design thought integrate these landscapes into concepts of collective memory, and mental/perceptive maps of populations - create new levels of awareness, intelligence and operability regarding their existence and potential future role in civilization?

Wendy Highby:
The Tesseract, The Tesla, and the Anti-Reflexivity Thesis: How Librarians Can Save the World

Faced with boom-and-bust cycles of fossil fuel extraction, climate change denial, resistance to the transition to renewable energy, and industrial agriculture in her community, a Colorado librarian explains how existing library networks can be co-opted to build civic capacity and nurture ecological worldviews. In this Anthropocene Era, arts and humanities librarians can help communities develop new, eco-friendly narratives; science librarians can heal the schism between production and environmental science; and social science librarians can encourage civil discourse and self-reflection.

William Denton:

GHG.EARTH (http://ghg.earth/) makes sound of climate change: it's a sonification of the most recent atmospheric CO₂ reading at Mauna Loa in Hawaii at the NOAA observatory. It is meant as background, ambient music, to be played at a low volume while one does other things. The next day the sound will be a little different. The day after that, a little different again. Next year, it will be higher. The year after, higher still. Anthropocene librarianship can be art.

Andrea Atkins:
Libraries and Sustainability in the Former Soviet Union

Librarians in post-Soviet states have redefined their profession as one that promotes community welfare through the support of lifelong learning, including promoting public awareness of climate change. This lightning talk highlights some of the challenges related to improving environmental sustainability and elevating relevant collections in relation to the unique history of Soviet libraries.

Beth Filar Williams:
Integrating Sustainability into the Daily Work Practices: Lessons Learned as a Manager

Integrating sustainability into daily library practices is both internal and external - as manager and faculty member on campus my leadership role can provide influence into both sectors. This session will share lessons learned, challenges faced, and tips for trying to change behaviors, educate, and carry out this core value of sustainability and also an understanding of the looming impacts of climate change which affect all aspects of all of our lives.

Evi Klett:
Supporting Regenerative Practices in Denver: Programming and Networking @DPL

The Denver Public Library is sowing seeds of ecological and social regeneration by engaging with Denver communities in a variety of ways. The mosaic of efforts include blogging, programming, and networking with the Denver Permaculture Guild, the Denver Office of Sustainability, Lighthouse Writers, and ALEF, the Americas Latino Eco-Festival.

Sarah Burke Cahalan:
Libraries and Laudato Si’

As a special collections library at a Catholic institution, we take the Pope seriously when he expresses concern about “excessive anthropocentrism,” an intensified pace of technological change, pollution, throwaway culture, and the effects of such ills on God’s creation. But what can we really do, when professional best practice and responsible collections stewardship suggest that we need a new building, lower temperatures, more security systems, new furniture and technology?

Amanda Avery:
Our Dark Materials: A Steampunk Future for Libraries?

What sort of combination of low and high tech library systems would be most likely to persist in a world of reduced technological infrastructure due to climate change? The idea of steampunk may provide a useful metaphor in thinking about designing "hybrid-tech" information systems for the future.