Call for Papers: Congress 2020

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The Canadian Association for Information Science / l’Association canadienne des sciences de l’information (CAIS/ACSI) invites submissions for its 48th Annual Conference, to take place during the 2020 Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, June 1-3, 2020 at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario.

London is situated where the Thames River (Deshkan Ziibi) forks into its north and south branches and flows separately onwards to distant mouths.  In this space marked by bifurcation, we are invited to consider the ways in which the scholarship and practice of information science is both coming together to a point and diverging along different trajectories.  At this critical juncture that is the present moment, what choices are we to make?  What are the options before us and what are potential solutions to bridge unwanted divides or avoid perilous futures?  Thus, this year’s conference will investigate “Diverging Trajectories in Information Science.”  Applicants can consider, among other subjects, the following:

  • Diverging methodologies in information science;
  • Contested grounds in data collection, data interpretation and study findings;
  • Cognitive versus social approaches;
  • Questions of theory and practice and their divergence;
  • Trajectories and their possibility of future convergence;
  • Scholarship involving information and decision-making.

We invite papers, panels, and posters representing diverse topics and methods related (but not limited) to the above theme. In particular, we encourage individuals to submit papers, panels, and posters on the revised Congress 2020 theme emphasizing the confrontation of colonialism and anti-black racism.

Types of proposals

CAIS/ACSI welcomes proposals reporting on empirical, theoretical, and practice-based research. Proposals may be submitted in English or French. CAIS/ACSI will likely have overlapping dates with several related conference associations such as CAPAL/ACBES.

Papers: 20-minute oral presentations of completed or well-developed projects on topics suitable for publication in scholarly journals.  Proposals reporting on completed or ongoing research will be given preference. Diverse and innovative perspectives (theoretical and applied) and methodologies are welcome. Proposals should be in the form of an extended abstract (approximately 1000-1500 words excluding references). Please use this template.

Panels: 90-minute oral presentations from three or more authors on emerging domains, trends, or contrasting viewpoints, including time for questions or discussion.  Panels are an opportunity to engage in discussion of shared concerns including those not available in completed research or yet adequately recognized. We recommend three to five panelists plus a moderator and there will be an opportunity to modify the list of panelists after acceptance. Proposals should be in the form of an extended abstract (approximately 1000-1500 words excluding references), that identifies the topic to be discussed, provides an overview of the structure of the panel, and includes relevant qualifications and contributions of each participating panelist. Please use this template.

Posters: Visual presentations of projects at any stage of development on topics suitable for publication in scholarly journals. Diverse perspectives (theoretical and applied) and methodologies are welcomed. Proposals should be in the form of a short abstract (maximum 750 words excluding references), reporting on research projects, theoretical developments or innovative practical applications. Please use this template.

Student-to-CAIS/ACSI and Best Paper by a Practitioner Awards: Paper proposals by graduate students and practitioners will be considered for these awards. The Student-to-CAIS/ACSI award includes a monetary prize. Both awardees will have the opportunity to publish the full manuscript in the Canadian Journal of Information and Library Science / La Revue canadienne des sciences de l’information et de bibliothéconomie. In order to be considered for these awards, please indicate if you are a student or practitioner when submitting your proposal. Winners will be selected based on their extended abstracts. Details of the award, including previous winners, can be found at the CAIS/ACSI website at

Proposals will be evaluated on theory/methodology, clarity, impact/originality, and overall quality. Proposals will be received and reviewed using CAIS/ACSI’s Open Journal System.

If you run into issues submitting your paper, poster, or panel through the OJS system by the submission date, please submit instead by email to Grant Campbell ( with “CAIS2020” as the subject line.

Doctoral Forum: We are pleased to invite doctoral students to the fourth annual Doctoral Forum. The Forum’s goal is to provide students with an opportunity to present and discuss their research project, get feedback from senior researchers, and make connections with other doctoral students. Students at any stage of their doctoral program are invited to submit to the Forum.

Please be prepared to present informally on an aspect of your research for 5-10 minutes, which will be followed by discussion. More details will be provided upon acceptance.

To participate, please fill out the following submission form.

The submission deadline for all proposals is January 20, 2020 January 27, 2020.

Authors will be notified no later than February 28, 2020. All presenters must register for the conference. Abstracts will be published on the CAIS/ACSI website once registration has taken place. Final versions must be submitted no later than April 30, 2020. Authors are also encouraged to submit full papers to the Canadian Journal of Information and Library Science / La Revue canadienne des sciences de l’information et de bibliothéconomie.

Initial submissions should be scrubbed of identifying information for double-blind peer review.

Registration: Expect more details soon.  Registration will be available online through the Congress website ( Congress 2020 will offer childcare options and family-friendly activities.

For further information, please contact the CAIS/ACSI 2020 Conference Co-chairs.

Roger Chabot
Library Assistant, Western Libraries
Course Instructor, Faculty of Information and Media Studies
Western University

Grant Campbell
Associate Professor
Faculty of Information and Media Studies
Western University

Leah Brown
PhD Student
Faculty of Information and Media Studies
Western University