• Keynote Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Who are our keynote speakers? Find out who is speaking at this year's conference and read their biographies and abstracts.

Ola Pilerot


Ola Pilerot, senior lecturer at the Swedish School of Library and Information Science (SSLIS), University of Borås, teaches and publishes within the field of information practices and information literacies. Pilerot is also regional editor (Western Europe) of the journal Information Research, and a member of the Information practices research group at SSLIS.

Before joining SSLIS, Pilerot was deputy library director at Skövde University College. His main area of research interest concerns information literacies in academia and scholarly information practices.

Since 2015, a great part of his research work has centred on issues related to information practices of refugees and immigrants, in particular on public libraries’ work for newly arrived immigrants.

Pilerot has published widely in, for example, Journal of Documentation, Information Research, Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, and Library Trends.

For more information, please visit Ola’s website.


Putting theory to work in practice: unpacking information literacy with a conceptual toolbox from library and information science 

The overarching issue for this keynote concerns the relationship between information literacy (IL) practice and research. My basic assumption is that different actors such as librarians and researchers in the IL field, have much to gain from being well-versed in each other’s interests and activities.

The presentation will be somewhat retrospective and personal in nature. I will begin with some reflections on my previous experiences as an academic librarian working with IL. I will then move on towards my present interest and activities in library and information science (LIS), which includes research on IL. This intellectual journey from practice to research spans 20 years. When I was working as a librarian, I began to come across LIS research of the sort that I now quite systematically monitor in my capacity as a researcher. I strongly believe that research contributed to inform and improve my teaching practice as a librarian. I aim to promote what I would like to term a ‘research-use’ approach to teaching IL and to do this, I will present an overview of selected LIS research that I think relevant to people who are engaged in IL issues.

As a librarian I was primarily engaged in IL as a goal for my educational activities. What was most important to me then was to enable my students to become information literate. As a researcher my goal is somewhat different. Now I am more inclined to conceive of IL as a study object, as something that can be observed through the study of what people do with, and through information. However, in line with my suggested research-use approach to IL teaching, I can see a clear connection between these two interests. From my current researcher-perspective, I will elaborate on this connection between teaching IL and research into how people learn through information. I will conclude with a suggestion for an empirically based understanding of IL, which I believe has the potential to serve as an important basis for IL teaching. In this way, IL be seen as an embedded capacity to understand and be familiar with how information is produced, sought, used, and valued in a certain practice.


David White


David is Head of Digital Learning at the University of the Arts London, the largest creative arts university in Europe. He started out at the University of the West of England and the BBC followed by a stint at Oxford, so he has a good understanding of a range of education institutions. David explores the intersections between digital learning, creative practices and critical thinking.

He is best known for his Visitors and Residents idea which is used the worldwide to visualise and research digital engagement. He has also been involved in national and international studies exploring the use of digital in higher education. Through this work David has developed long and lively relationship with Libraries, especially around their changing role in the digital era.

David is at home blogging, tweeting or creating videos – working in an open manner in online spaces. For David the digital is much more than a set of tools or a chaotic library, it’s a place where we can learn and live.

For more information, please visit David’s website.


Posthuman literacies: reframing relationships between information, technology and identity
My phone is not a tool I use, it’s a facet of my ‘self’. It is part of who I am - part of what makes me human. By extension, the knowledge and  expertise in my network is also interwoven into my sense of self, it’s an element of my identity. In this talk I will explore notions of the technoself and how we can respond to students and staff who embody, rather then simply use, technology. I will highlight what this means for critical pedagogy and the crucial role libraries play in fostering a culture of criticality within which students can extend, not defend, their identities.

Barbara Band


Barbara Band is an award-winning Chartered librarian with over twenty five years’ experience of delivering customer focused services within the education sector, with a range of project management and promotional skills gained in commercial and non-profit organisations. Having worked in a range of schools, she is now a freelance consultant providing training and advice to librarians, teachers and literacy organisations; is involved in creating and refurbishing libraries to meet user needs; and publishes regularly on reading, library and literacy issues. In addition to her own blog, she guest blogs for education journals and has authored several publications for the School Library Association.

Barbara received the inaugural School Library Association Founder’s award in 2014 for her outstanding contribution to school librarianship, was made an Honorary Member of the CILIP Youth Libraries Group in 2014, and was on the School Librarian of the Year Honour’s List in 2009. She has been on selection panels for the Booktrust Teenage Award, School Libraries Pack and Bookbuzz schemes as well as the Roald Dahl Funny Prize.

Past President of CILIP, Barbara is actively involved in her professional associations and is currently Chair of the CILIP School Library Data Project, Features Editor of the School Library Association (SLA) “The School Librarian” journal and Chair of the SLA Berkshire branch. She says, “I believe vehemently in the value and benefits of libraries with professional librarians. If we are serious about creating an informed and literate society, one that is involved in their local community and that supports a wider economic development then we need a robust and linked structure of both public and educational libraries.”


The Elephant in the Room – why are information literacy skills not an essential part of the curriculum?

Information literacy skills are recognised as being essential in today’s information-overloaded world and a basic requirement for an effective and empowered society. They are crucial for learning, extending beyond the academic into the workplace and impacting on what can often be life-changing decisions. This is acknowledged by librarians, teachers and the business community.

It could be argued that information literacy teaching is alive and well - an online search for “information literacy skills” brings up almost fifteen million results. And yet, in the majority of schools, information literacy skills are ignored or, at best, taught in an ad hoc manner.

What are the barriers to delivering an information literacy programme across the curriculum - can they be overcome or are the challenges too great? Do the problems lie with the curriculum, the teaching staff or the librarians themselves – or is the pervasive growth of technology and our reliance on it to blame?

Present @ LILAC

LILAC is great opportunity for our fellow professionals to present their ideas, share best practice and show case new thinking in our sector. If you have an idea then we'd love to hear about it. We have many options for the types of sessions you might run from a symposium to a workshop. Visit our Call for papers page to find out how to apply.

Book your place

Places at this year's conference are likely to be in demand more than ever before. Each year our conference grows increasingly popular and this year promises to be no different. Don't miss out and book your place now for this year's conference.
We look forward to seeing you there!

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