Must-Have Program Topics

The Annual Meeting Program Committee has compiled the following list of “must-have” program topics (see FAQ) for the 2020 Annual Meeting & Conference—timely topics that AALL members have identified as being vital to their professional education. These topics support various competencies and skills comprising AALL’s Body of Knowledge (BoK) domains.

Peruse the list— Perhaps one of the topics is exactly what your library has been tackling this year. Perhaps you know the perfect presenter. Perhaps a working group within your SIS has been brainstorming about the topic already.

Programs on the topics below will be offered in New Orleans. Any topics not sufficiently covered by the submitted proposals will be curated by the AMPC, often with assistance from interested members and SISs who may have expertise and/or speaker recommendations in a particular area. Of course, if you are thinking about proposing a completely different program—go for it! You might also be inspired by the other ideas AALL members have already shared.) We can’t wait to see your proposals!

Topics by Body of Knowledge domains:

  • Professionalism + Leadership at Every Level

    • Fostering diversity, equality, & inclusionBoK Professionalism + Leadership at Every Level icon
      Cultural and identity awareness and competencies. Recognizing and cultivating emotional intelligence. Globalization demands approaches that include foreign, comparative, and international perspectives. Actively combating stereotypes.
    • Developing communication skills
      Advocacy strategies for individuals, departments, libraries, and the profession. Building bridges across silos. Negotiation, navigating controversy, and change management.
    • Future of the profession
      Recruitment & mentoring. Professional development. Career transitions across library types, departments, positions, institutions.
    • Strengthening strategic leadership skills
      Team building. Meaningful goal setting. Process improvement (e.g., onboarding, project management). Remote work opportunities and challenges.
    • Professionalism & ethics
      Developing and following a professional code of conduct. Ethical obligations. Values & principles. Access to information. Prioritizing social justice.

  • Research + Analysis

    • AnalyticsBoK Research + Analysis icon
      DIY analytics. Analytics on a shoestring. Update: what’s new in analytics. New vendor spotlight: newer companies (e.g., DocketAlarm Analytics Workbench).
    • Technology & information ethics
      Ethical research. Vetting resources. Human intel: information retrieval by direct contact. Designing and building library apps.
    • Managing expectations
      Linking deliverables and timeframes. Communicating what is possible.
    • Civil law research
      Legislative process (various jurisdictions). Influences on civil law. Tools. New Orleans/Louisiana law.
    • Evolution of government research
      Evolution of tools. Government research tips (legislative and regulatory). Administrative proceedings. Dockets.

  • Information Management

    • Emerging technologies and innovationBoK Information Management icon
      Mobile technology. Cool tools. AI. APIs. Database management. Authentication.
    • Institutional repositories
      Open source platforms. Best practices. Metadata issues in IR. Systems integration. Discovery layers.
    • Risk management and information security
      Disaster planning and recovery. Business continuity. Ethics. Privacy.
    • Information organization
      Knowledge management in law firms. MarcEdit. ILS systems. Records management. Collection development. Resource management.
    • Information access and preservation
      Copyright. Archives, records, and data preservation. Vendor license negotiation skills.

  • Teaching + Training

    • Highlighting subject-specific research toolsBoK Teaching + Training icon
      Focusing on tools, tips, and resources that accentuate specialized expertise and subject-specific research to teach students and working attorneys how to better fulfill client and agency needs.
    • Assisting non-JD patrons
      Finding supplemental ways to provide service to our non-traditional populations such as public librarians, pro se litigants, non-JD students while adhering to our ethical standards.
    • Reimagining student engagement techniques
      Offering more than just swag and cookies – creating innovative techniques for capturing law students’ attention and preparing them for success beyond the classroom.
    • Increasing workplace efficiency and competency
      Whistle while we work – utilizing thoughtful implementation of assessment and metrics, offering tools for self-improvement and interpersonal connections, and providing training (and retraining) opportunities for all staff and management.
    • Preparing newer librarians
      Bring in the newbies…and keep them here – how to adequately prepare newer librarians with necessary core skills for the practical and aspirational aspects of the profession in their first years on the job.

  • Marketing + Outreach

    • Marketing, branding, and communications strategies
      BoK Marketing + Outreach icon
      Finding the right balance between your professional and casual voice. Showing the ROI of your library. Engaging in fundraising activities. Outreach to connect with current and new patrons.
    • Collaborations & partnerships
      Strengthening traditional & non-traditional partnerships. Legal research instruction for the non-law/public librarians. Partnering with your organizational colleagues & departments. Sharing resources & collections with other libraries.
    • Using technologies to deliver your message
      Fair use of media. Let’s podcast. From story boarding to editing – simple steps for creating effective video recordings. Implementing & using widgets, bots, and AI to enhance your library services.
    • Access to justice: advocacy & outreach
      Providing legal resources & research assistance to pro se litigants. Understanding community resources for your public patrons. Helping law students create A2J tools. After UELMA: accessing and protecting free official law online.
    • Leveraging collections & services
      Creating a law archive. Putting your collections & services in the spotlight during library orientation. Special collections to enhance the library experience and its services – exhibits, research, reference, and teaching.

  • Management + Business Acumen

    • Job descriptions and duties
      BoK Management + Business Acumen icon
      Creating new positions. Reconfiguring existing positions. Recruiting candidates with appropriate skill sets for new positions.
    • Analytics
      Analyzing data. Benchmarking. Using a data-driven approach in strategic planning both to create the plan and measure progress towards plan goals.
    • Negotiation
      Negotiating vendor contracts. Negotiation with prospective employers/employees. Saying no.
    • Emergency preparedness
      Planning for worst-case scenarios such as active shooters, natural disasters, failing infrastructure, and catastrophic climate change.
    • Supporting personnel
      Providing appropriate training not just for new hires but for personnel throughout their careers, nurturing and developing talent, identifying and grooming leaders and supervisors, caring for all level of employees’ mental health.