#RLUK24 Virtual Conference :: 20-22 March 2024

New Frontiers: The expanding scope of the modern research library

The role of the research library continues to expand as formats multiply, technology advances, and the expectations of the research community grow. As in many sectors, AI has the potential to significantly shift the research process, research dissemination, and workflows. All aspects of library activity could be impacted, from content creation, cataloguing and metadata, through to interactions with researchers. But with these exciting possibilities come ethical considerations and the need to consider the impact on both staff and users of libraries. RLUK24 seeks to consider the potential of AI but will give space to pause and consider the implications of such rapid and significant change.

Research libraries are placed within larger institutions and the wider communities – both local, national, and international. RLUK24 will investigate the ways in which libraries can align and support institutional strategies, build partnerships, and engage with wider (often new) communities.

As our libraries take on this expanding scope, the skills that library staff need also expand. RLUK24 will look at leadership in a post-pandemic blended world, as well as ways in which we can demonstrate the impact and value of new activities.

We look forward to your joining us on 20-22 March 2024, as we explore the new frontiers for research libraries.

RLUK24 is sponsored by

RLUK24 Keynote Speakers

Alison Mudditt
Public Library of Science (PLOS)

Since June 2017 Alison has been CEO of PLOS, an organisation dedicated to advancing equitable, open science for the benefit of everyone everywhere. Prior to PLOS, Alison served as Director of the University of California Press and as Executive Vice President at SAGE Publications.

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Natasha McCarthy
Royal Academy of Engineering

Natasha McCarthy is Associate Director, National Engineering Policy Centre, at the Royal Academy of Engineering. Prior to this, she was Head of Policy at the Royal Society, leading the Society’s work on data and digital technology, covering issues including the governance of AI and data use. 

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Renée Cummings
University of Virginia

Professor Renée Cummings, a VentureBeat AI Innovator Award winner, is an artificial intelligence (AI), data and tech ethicist, and the first Data Activist-in-Residence, at the University of Virginia’s (UVA), School of Data Science, where she was named Professor of Practice in Data Science. 

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Torsten Reimer
University of Chicago

Dr. Torsten Reimer is University Librarian and Dean of the University Library at the University of Chicago. With a background in digital scholarship and research infrastructures, Torsten’s career is focused on making the global knowledge environment more open. 

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Kate Robson Brown
University College Dublin

Kate Robson Brown is Vice-President for Research, Innovation and Impact at University College Dublin, Ireland. Between 2018 – February 2024 she was Director of the Jean Golding Institute for Data Science and AI, and Professor of Engineering Mathematics and Biological Anthropology, at the University of Bristol, UK.

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About the RLUK24 Conference

RLUK24 will be a virtual conference held from 20-22 March 2024 on the Pheedloop platform.

**Please note Pheedloop does not work with Internet Explorer, therefore you will need to use another browser (e.g. Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge) to participate in the conference.

The conference is open to all, and is an excellent opportunity for colleagues to connect and discuss how we can help shape the research library of the 21st century.

Why virtual?

Like many other events the RLUK Conference pivoted to online in response to the pandemic in 2021. While there are many benefits of an in-person conference, the virtual space has allowed us to open up our conference in a very positive and inclusive way.

Our online conferences have heard from colleagues from across the research and academic library community, here in the UK and Ireland and much further afield, and our accessible online pricing has allowed us to welcome a much wider audience to join us in rich and invigorating conference discussions.

The RLUK Conference is a space where we wish to bring all colleagues together, regardless of their geography or career level, so for 2024 we have decided to keep the conference as a virtual event. We hope that you will be able to join us as either a speaker or attendee.

Conference fees

The fees for the RLUK24 conference are:

  • RLUK Member delegate: £25 +VAT (£30) This ticket option is open to colleagues from an RLUK member institution only.
  • Non-RLUK Member (UK): £100 +VAT (£120) This ticket option is for delegates that are based in the UK, and are NOT from an RLUK member institution.
  • International (outside the UK): £100 This ticket option is for delegates that are based outside of the UK, and that are not subject to VAT.

If you accidentally purchase the incorrect ticket your order will be cancelled and you will be required to register again.

Registration closes on Friday 15 March at 12:00 (GMT).

RLUK24 Bursaries

We aim to make the RLUK24 Conference as accessible as possible, and to help achieve this we are offering a number of bursaries to help those that may otherwise not be able to participate with the conference. This year we are also offering a networking grant to facilitate regional, in-person conference events.

We particularly encourage those from underrepresented groups to apply for these bursaries. These may include but are not limited to:

  • Members of ethnic minority communities and other underrepresented groups within the library and information sectors
  • Early career researchers and professionals
  • Low income households or those for whom the fee is prohibitive

We welcome applications from all colleagues with a professional interest in the research sector, from the UK, Ireland or internationally. RLUK24 bursaries and grants are NOT restricted to colleagues working in RLUK member institutions.

RLUK24 bursaries will be awarded at the discretion of RLUK, and we will not be able to provide feedback to unsuccessful applicants. RLUK reserves the right to amend or withdraw any bursary award or grant without prior notification.

Any transfer of monies will be by bank transfer only.

RLUK24 registration bursaries

We are offering 20 registration bursaries which will cover 100% of the cost of the conference fee for colleagues from underrepresented groups, early career professionals, those in roles below associate director level, or those who would otherwise not normally attend the event.

RLUK24 registration bursaries will cover the RLUK conference fee only. Any other incidental expenses will need to be borne by the recipient. Registration bursaries will not involve any transfer of monies.

Bursary recipients will be expected to attend all days of the conference, and within one month of the end of the event will be required to produce a summary of their experience, which may be published on the RLUK website(s) or in other promotional literature.

▶️Apply for an RLUK24 registration bursary (Closes Friday 1 March)

RLUK24 access bursaries

We recognise that even for virtual events there may be some barriers which prevent people from fully participating in the conference. Our access bursaries are provided to help overcome some of these barriers. They may be in respect of technology limitations, or to cover costs for care for parents and caregivers, or to give you the space to engage with the conference by being able to rent a hot desk space etc.

Access bursaries are for the maximum amount of £200 and there are five bursaries on offer.

Please note applicants for access bursaries will also need to apply for a registration bursary if appropriate.

▶️ Apply for an RLUK24 access bursary (Closes Monday 19 February)

RLUK24 networking grants

We wish to help facilitate regional, in person, networking ‘watch parties’ during the conference, and are offering a limited number of grants of £2,000 which may cover the costs for room hire, technology, catering and other incidental costs for an in-person event.

A key requirement for networking grants is that any event must be open to colleagues from outside the applicant’s own department, institution or organisation, and the audience that the event will be promoted to should be listed in the application. This may include other local institutions, membership bodies or staff/ECRs outside of the library.

Please note networking grant payments will be made to an institution or organisation only.

*We do not intend to charge for access to the session for watch parties and would provide zoom details for free. But if attendees wished to interact in the conference platform they would be required to purchase a normal ticket. 

▶️ Apply for an RLUK24 Networking Grant (Closes Friday 16 February)