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24th Polar Libraries Colloquy

24th Polar Libraries Colloquy

Cold Regions: Pivot Points, Focal Points


  • Jun 11-14, 2012


ATLAS Building
University of Colorado Boulder
Boulder, Colorado

Contact Information:

303 492-5774
303 492-1867

Conference Program:

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About the 24th Polar Libraries Colloquy

Welcome to Boulder!

The polar regions occupy new territory in public awareness.  As a changing climate confronts both local and global populations and remixes environmental systems, shifting perceptions of polar regions are driving scientific discovery, cultural change, news coverage, resource races, and political and social debate.  Even to those who live far from them, the Arctic and Antarctic no longer seem remote.

The theme of the 2012 colloquy emphasizes the global reach of Arctic and Antarctic issues.  As always, papers and panel discussions on all topics are welcome.  The theme may stimulate discussions of scale, networks, or relationships.  For instance:

  • How are changing perceptions of polar regions reflected in our collections or patterns of use?  Are we providing resources to journalists, policy makers, citizens, students?  Are we preserving cultural or historical resources to new ends?
  • How are we thinking global while acting local?  What are ways in which our specific actions in specialized libraries connect to each other or to broader networks?
  • Is it possible to frame trends in our services, funding environment, etc. in concepts like center vs. periphery, near vs. far, plenty vs. scarcity? 
  • How are libraries and archives reaching out to their patrons, or finding new patrons?  How can we create library fans and champions?
  • What new technologies are we using, and what for?  How might we connect people with collections in innovative ways?
  • Libraries have often been described as “windows on the world.”  What views of polar regions are our libraries and archives presenting?

The Colloquy will be hosted by the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR) Library and the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) Resource Office for Cryospheric Studies (ROCS).