Classification is at the heart of ISKO's mission. All of us learn and apply the techniques; many of us also teach the subject. But classification is not the only approach to knowledge organization, and today's information professionals need to master more subjects and skills than ever before. Classification is being squeezed into a steadily smaller corner of the curriculum.

The time is ripe to reconsider what we all need to learn about classification, and how best to learn it. A full day seminar and workshop will be held in London on Monday 16 July this year, in the hope that many  ISKO members will take this opportunity to participate in considering the best way forward.
The programme starts by reminding ourselves of the basics: the principles of classification, the philosophy and the research into cognitive psychology. We shall hear from experts in five different fields where classification is applied. The employment opportunities too will be considered, before we join breakout groups to consider what we can and should do to develop our understanding and skills, and to engage the next generation of knowledge organizers. (See detailed programme below.)

The event is organized jointly between ISKO UK and the Information Retrieval Specialist Group  (IRSG) of the British Computer Society. In the breaks we hope to arrange demonstrations from vendors of software designed to handle classification automatically.

The event fee (which includes lunch and refreshments) is 25 pounds to ISKO and BCS members and to full-time students and just 60 pounds for non-members, payable in advance.  To reserve a place and see more details, please go to Shortly we'll be looking for people to lead the breakout sessions, and we'd love to hear from you if you have ideas for structuring these.

"I think, therefore I classify" - Outline programme for 16 July 2012:

Session 1: The need for classification education and skills
•    Principles of classification for libraries physical or virtual  - Vanda Broughton
•    How is classification currently taught? Review of current courses in UK -  Chris Urquhart
•    Demand for classification skills: the employment/recruitment trends  - Donald Lickley

Session 2: Perspectives on classification
•    Classification in the sciences, especially biology - Sandra Knapp
•    Information retrieval and classification - Fabrizio Sebastiani
•    Categorization and website architecture - Tony Russell-Rose
•    Classification in records management: part of the solution or part of the problem? - Steve Bailey
•    Class structure of ontologies, and uses in the Semantic Web - [speaker to be confirmed]

Session 3: Back to basics
•    To Cognize is to Categorize: From the 'Blooming, Buzzing Confusion' to the 'Cognitive Commons' - Stevan Harnad (by videoconference)
•    Philosophy of classification - John Dupré

Session 4: What to do about it?: Breakout sessions:
•    Curriculum content in university LIS courses
•    Learning in the workplace
•    Classification in electronic/networked environments
•    Formal versus informal classification
•    Classification content of computer science curricula

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