RBMS 2016 | Coral Gables, FL


Opening Doors to Collaboration, Outreach, and Diversity

Tuesday, June 21, 2016 – Friday, June 24, 2016

Biltmore Hotel, Coral Gables, FL

Want to be involved next year? Here’s how!

Opening Doors to Collaboration, Outreach and Diversity seeks to demonstrate the myriad ways special collections and archives can engage and interact with multiple constituencies. Diversity in this context is understood as a broad collaboration with many cultural communities, a reimagining of the types of partnerships we can create, and a broad conception of cultural heritage formats and materials that might otherwise be overlooked by traditional collecting practices. This conference is intended to serve as a venue in which the special collections community can have productive conversations about its potential engagement with a broader range of cultural materials than it might traditionally. The communities and cultures in which institutions are situated strongly influence what is collected, how resources are described, and how materials are accessed and used. The boundaries of special collections and archives are fluid; they not only document our shared cultural heritage, they are integrally shaped by the cultural circumstances in which they exist. We must open our doors and our minds to find ways to continually engage in productive conversation. Speakers will share with us the dynamic collaborative partnerships and outreach endeavors they are engaged in, as well as help us imagine new possibilities.

Preconference component committees will accept proposals for a variety of session formats. Proposals will be evaluated for relevance to the conference theme, except in the case of Seminars which can, but do not need to, conform to the theme. Special attention will be given to proposals that:

  • demonstrate innovative thinking, originality, and timeliness.
  • generate ideas or report research that contribute to ongoing discussion about the future of academic and research libraries within the evolution of the liberal arts and sciences
  • present strategies for effectively implementing new ideas and technology; and
  • encourage active learning among conference attendees.

Have an idea that doesn’t exactly apply to one of the formats below? We’d love your input!

– Preconference Co-chairs, Aislinn Sotelo (asotelo@ucsd.edu) and Lori Dekydtspotter (lodekydt@indiana.edu)


Format: Seminars teach and present a variety of topics to round-out the preconference content and are not necessarily tied to the theme.

How to Submit: Please submit your proposal online or email it to seminars@rbms.info with a brief description (500 words or less) of the purpose, content, and format of your proposed seminar and list the names and affiliations of any presenters you’ve contacted.

Questions: Contact Sarah Horowitz (shorowitz@haverford.edu), chair


Format: Formal half-day sessions requiring pre-registration that teach particular topics in depth

How to Submit: The Workshops Committee invites proposals for hands-on, off-site, half-day printing or book arts workshops, to be given on June 21, 2016, the Tuesday at the beginning of the 2016 RBMS Preconference in Coral Gables. Workshops should be about 3 hours. Proposals should include the following information:

  • Name(s) and titles (if appropriate) of organizers and/or instructors;
  • Address, phone, and email;
  • A 150-250 word summary of your workshop, including a timetable, what sort of physical artifacts participants might expect to bring away with them, and an idea of what sorts of materials would need to be provided.

Questions: Jennifer MacDonald (jsmacdon@udel.edu), chair

Short Papers

Format: Brief presentations, either in the context of a panel of speakers or on a poster, in which presenters share their experience, ideas, or research. We are seeking submissions that address the conference theme for any of the following content types:

  • Scholarly, research papers about materials, OR high-level work about libraries
  • Case studies: studies of how things are done well at a library
  • Reports, information exchange about collections and/or libraries.
  • Submissions may also vary in length:
  • 3 people, 20 minutes each, followed by 30 minutes for discussion and questions
  • 8 people (or 9), 7 minutes each, followed by 30 minutes for discussion and questions

Please indicate the content type and projected length of your talk. Feel free to submit proposals for as a group or an individual. If you are submitting an individual talk, we will group successful submissions as appropriate.

How to Submit: Please submit proposals of 250 words by Friday, October 23, 2015, to: rbms2016shortpapers@gmail.com

Deadline: Friday, October 23, 2015

Notification: Applicants will be notified of the status of their proposals by Friday, January 15, 2016.

Questions: Robert Montoya (rmontoya@g.ucla.edu), chair


We invite proposals for the RBMS Conference Poster sessions.

Successful proposals will address the conference theme incorporating a graphic component to illustrate case studies, collections, or research.

  • Posters will be displayed on 30” x 40” foam board during session coffee breaks. Further guidelines for presentation will be sent with acceptance notification.

How to Submit: Please submit written proposals of no more than 200 words to: rbms2016posters@gmail.com

Deadline: Friday, January 16, 2016

Questions: Kim Schwenk (rbms2016posters@gmail.com), chair

Less Formal Participatory Sessions

Format: Topics addressed in a variety of structures such as discussion sessions, dork shorts (5-minute description/elevator pitch for a tool/project/etc.), lightening rounds, pecha kucha (presentation format in which speaker shows 20 images, each for 20 seconds), lunch meet-ups, reading group, curated pop-up exhibit, etc. for interaction and practical application

How to Submit: Please contact Jane Gillis (jane.gillis@yale.edu) with ideas for novel formats and timely topics

Deadline: Friday, October 23, 2015

Questions: Jane Gillis (jane.gillis@yale.edu), chair