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Further Reflections on IWMW 2012

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 21 September 2012

Networking at Our Dynamic Earth at the IWMW 2012 event.

We are currently in the process of finalising a venue for UKOLN’s IWMW 2013 event. Next year’s event will be the 17th in the series of annual events which, as described in the newcomer’s session at IWMW 2012, aims to “keep web managers up-to-date with developments and best practices in order that institutions can exploit the Web to its full potential“.

But before becoming too immersed in the detailed planning it would be useful to look back at the IWMW 2012 event which took place in June at the University of Edinburgh. I have previously summarised the participants’ feedback from the event. When I received an email from the Scottish Web Folk mailing list about a regional meeting taking place which would review the IWMW 2012 event I realised that this would provide an opportunity for further feedback. After the meeting the following summary was sent to the list:

All agreed that it was a great conference.

  • All happy with the range of subjects covered. Many felt that the quality and relevance of talks were excellent. Trends around responsive websites and content as data and data as content appealed.
  • Some were pleasantly surprised that there was little on social media.
  • XCRI-CAP information very useful and all agreed that it would be important to monitor progress on this in England to prepare for impact on Scotland

Some ideas for next year’s conference:

More on content strategy, responsive design, multi-platform strategies.

We also agreed that it might be interesting to consider trying to get a big international name from the Web industry to provide a keynote and possibly controversial talk.

It was very pleasing to hear how well the event was received by Web managers across Scottish Universities. It was also good to see that the two main content areas – addressing the challenges of supporting mobile devices and understanding the opportunities provided by the growth in importance of data – were relevant to the sector.

In addition to the feedback provided from a meeting of Scottish Web Folk during the event itself we asked a small number of participants for their thoughts on the event. This feedback was provided as brief video interviews. There were a total of nine interviews, each of which lasted from 1.5 to 3 minutes. Four of the interviews, from Marieke Guy, David Sloan, John Kelly and Claire Gibbons, were given by workshop facilitators and typically summarised their sessions. The other five interviews were given by participants, three of whom were attending an IWMW event for the first time. These five interviews are available below.

Tracey Milnes
In this interview, lasting 2 minutes, Tracey Milnes, Website Officer at York St John University explains the reasons why she decided to attend an IWMW event for the first time. Tracey works for a small university with a small team Web team. Her main interest is content management and she was looking forward to meeting other people with similar interests – this was the most valuable aspect of the event. She has a particular interest in designing a responsive web site suitable for access to mobile devices. Tracey concluded by telling the interviewer that she’ll be looking forward to attending further IWMW events.
Jess Hobbs
In this interview, lasting 1 minute 55 seconds, Jess Hobbs, Content Manager at the Quality Assurance Agency, summarises her reasons for attending IWMW 2012 for the first time and describes how she learnt about the importance of data, the importance of openness and the importance of applying policies and processes to enhance web accessibility. Every talk and workshop has provided Jess with useful links and resources to investigate when she returns to work.
Sarah Williams
In this interview, lasting 1 minute 50 seconds, Sarah Williams, University of Exeter describes her reasons for attending IWMW 2012 for the first time. Her colleagues had attended previous IWMW event and had said how valuable the event was. She described it as “inspiring”, especially for learning from others and appreciated the willingness of her peers to share their approaches and solutions. She was particularly inspired by the session on Web accessibility and will be looking to apply the approaches used at the University of Southampton at her institution.
Kevin Mears
In this interview, lasting 1 minute 55 seconds, Kevin Mears, Web developer at the University of Glamorgan, describes his doodling activities at the IWMW 2012 event which he shared with other delegates. He highlighted Responsive Design and Data as the two key topics areas of interest and described his intentions to make use of Google Refine for data cleaning purposes.
Tom Knight-Markiegi
In this interview, lasting 1 minute 34 seconds, Tom Knight-Markiegi, Sheffield Hallam University, describes the importance of the networking opportunities provided by the IWMW 2012 event. He has a particular interest in the mobile sessions at the IWMW 2012 event. He has picked up lots of useful resources and tips at the event. He will be suggesting approaches to use of the mobile web to his colleagues and will be sharing details of resources he found, especially a number of relevant JISC resources.

What are the key messages from these interviews? It seems clear that networking opportunities provided at the event is particularly important as is the willingness of participants to share their experiences and share tips and resources. It was also interesting to note how the event can inspire participants. In recent years we have sought to invite inspirational speakers in order to provide such inspiration. Judging by the feedback received for IWMW 2010 and IWMW 2011, Paul Boag and Ranjit Sidhu successfully fulfilled this role in recent years. In light of the suggestion from the Scottish Web Folk that we should “consider trying to get a big international name from the Web industry to provide a keynote and possibly controversial talk” it seems that we should be looking to find an inspirational speaker for next year’s event. Whether the speaker should be encouraged to be controversial is an interesting question; Professor Ferdinand von Prondzynski in his talk which asked “Going Online – Do Universities Really Understand the Internet?” was certainly controversial in his views of the limitations of the home page design for a number of prestigious UK Universities. The reaction to the talk was very mixed with feedback ranging from:

  • “I didn’t agree with everything he said but it was by far the most entertaining and lively talk we saw. Controversy is good“,
  • “He was excellent, even though most of what he said was complete rubbish! Very entertaining.
  • Very useful to get the executive perspective – really helped to understand why the execs don’t get it.

through to:

  • Really shouldn’t have been let in. Waste of a session. Ill informed at best. I can point to user research that contradicts some of his ‘facts’.
  • Abysmal, and to think the day was 30mins longer because of this…

Beyond the style of presenting to the content itself, it seemed that the decision to address the mobile environment and data in a number of sessions was appropriate. It was also pleasing that two of the video interviews highlighted the value of the plenary talk and workshop session on Web accessibility. These sessions, which highlighted the BS 8878 Code of Practice and its relevance in higher education, reflected work I have been involved with over the years with the two speakers, EA Draffan and David Sloan. It does seem that the sector is interested in hearing more about approaches to Web accessibility which go beyond advocacy for WCAG guidelines.

Finally it was interesting to note the value which was given in a number of the video interviews to sharing resources. We have encouraged workshop facilitators to make their slides available on Slideshare using the IWMW12 tag so that the slides can be more easily found by others and the IWMW 2012 Slideshare Presentation Pack currently contains 20 slideshows, including those given in plenary talks and workshop sessions. But beyond the slides we should look at additional approaches we can take to facilitate such sharing of resources. Since one of the interviews mentioned the value of JISC resources to support institutional Web development activities it will, I think, be useful to explore ways in which the range of resources developed through JISC funding can be highlighted across this community. The Scottish Web Folk report also pointed out that the “XCRI-CAP information very useful“. Since the session on “The Xcri-cap Files” given by Claire Gibbons and Rob Englebright was based on the JISC Coursedata programme it would appear desirable to ensure that relevant JISC-funded projects make use of engagement and dissemination opportunities at future IWMW events.

In brief, therefore, these reflections have led me to conclude:

  • IWMW attendees place great importance on the networking and sharing opportunities provided at the event. We should therefore ensure that presentation time (e.g. the plenary talks) does not intrude on networking events. In addition since live video streaming of plenary talks does not encourage such networking opportunities, we should not be concerned that live streaming will significantly reduce the numbers of attendees at the event.
  • We should ensure that relevant JISC programmes and projects are made aware of the opportunities for engagement and dissemination which IWMW events can provide.
  • We should explore additional ways in which resources can be shared.

I’d welcome comments on these reflections.

Acknowledgement: Photograph of Networking at Our Dynamic Earth at the IWMW 2012 event taken by Sharon Steeples and available on Flickr under a CC BY-NC-SA licence.

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IWMW 2012: The Feedback

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 2 July 2012

“Thank you to all the organisers – another great IWMW!”

Over the 16 years of UKOLN’s annual IWMW event we have always valued the importance of user feedback for the event and this year is no exception.  When the rain stopped on the opening morning of the IWMW 2012 event I had the feeling that this year’s event would be special – and the analysis of the evaluation forms confirms my suspicion.

There were a total of 172 participants at this year’s event and we received 64 completed evaluation forms. As can be seen from the accompanying histograms, no fewer than 73% rated the organisation of the event as Excellent, with 41% regarding the content as excellent and 50% regarding the content as Very Good.

The highest ranked plenary speaker was Rob Borley.  His talk which asked “Do I Need an App for That?” scored 4.42 (on a scale of 1=Poor to 5=Excellent).

The other highly ranked plenary speakers were Keith Doyle and Paddy Callaghan, whose talk on “Serve Two Masters: Creating Large-Scale Responsive Websites” received a score of 4.32; Stephen Emmott whose talk on “Measuring Impact”  received a score of 4.32 and Dawn Ellis whose talk on “What Do You Really Want?” received a score of 4.24.  It was also pleasing that all of the plenary speakers received scores of Very Good or Excellent.

The general comments received on the content included:

  • Very good range of speakers in plenaries and interesting parallel sessions.
  • First time at IWMW – excellent conference, great speakers.
  • Was a bit scared that, as a learning technologist, the content would go completely over my head. Was pleasantly surprised that I understood much of the content so kudos to the presenters for putting their ideas over in a simple way.
  • Great topics, well presented.
  • Generally the content was well considered for the audience type and there were some interesting topics of discussion

The comments on the event organisation included:

  • Very well organised event, working like clockwork!
  • Well organised. Kudos.
  • Really well organised and a big shout out to the catering staff who rustled up some lovely gluten and dairy-free lunch for me!
  • Very efficient.
  • very smooth, under 1 roof, the technology worked well.

Comments made about the plenary talks included:

  • really good overview, hopefully his talk will be online and i can get colleagues to watch it“; “i fully intend to implement some ideas at my own institution” and “Some humour helped the drier “medicine” about data, go down very well. And I will definitely be trying out that Tag Galaxy which was demoed” – talk on “Data and the Web Manager” by Kevin Ashley
  • This talk in particular has driven me to open up our data where safe“; “Good to see Edinburgh Council embracing open data and the possibilities it gives for developers” and “Excellent presentation by a very dynamic expert who is always willing to share her knowledge, experiences and to learn.  Sally is a great ambassador for Edin City council. Suraj and Sally are a well rehearsed act. ” – talk on “Open Data Development in the City of Edinburgh Council” by Sally Kerr and Suraj Kika
  • Really thought provoking. Visualisation is cool!“; “Interesting to see the different ways to visualise data” and “Great innovative ways to present data and information” – talk on “Data Visualisation: A Taster” by Tony Hirst and Martin Hawksey
  • I already know A LOT about KIS as I am on the University’s KIS Project Board but it was good to get everyone up to speed with the KIS.  Generated some healthy debate and discussion later.  Andrew explained it very well and was very ‘human’ about the whole thing!” and “For me, this talk was the star of the whole event. A great speaker, who got stuck in and really told us the good, the bad, and the ugly about KIS and how it was going to affect us. Now all I have to do is worry about that widget….” – talk 0n “Key Information Sets Data” by Andrew Oakley
  • Excellent presentation skills and very informative“; “Well polished presentation and speaker outlying the pitfalls and benefits nicely. Well paced with good content” and “really comprehensively argued case that reinforced views that i didn’t realise i had” – talk on “Do I Need an App for That?” by Rob Borley
  • Interesting and useful. Have shared with colleagues back at the Uni and will reflect further with them“; “I knew a lot about this but it was a very good talk and brought together the area very well. She did very well when there was an incident in the audience – obviously an old hand” and “Very good to have this included, as I think Web Accessibility was one of the issues which we used to all worry about a lot, and in recent years has been pushed aside. Particlarly liked the speaker’s approach of showing practical solutions eg the AT Bar.” –  talk on “Beyond WCAG: Experiences in Implementing BS 8878” by EA Draffan
  • “I didn’t agree with everything he said but it was by far the most entertaining and lively talk we saw. Controversy is good”; “He was excellent, even though most of what he said was complete rubbish! Very entertaining.” and “Good speaker and probably the session that we’ll all remember from the conference. Some very good points, but I think it highlighted more the problem of senior managers imposing their somewhat selfish views on university web sites. ” – talk on “Going Online – Do Universities Really Understand the Internet?” by Ferdinand von Prondzynski
  • “This is what IWMW does best – inform about emerging trends and demonstrate approaches that other universities have taken.“; “Very useful, great to have the theory paired with practical implementation and expert voices on both” and “Was completely right to have a plenary on RWD, as it has become so important in the last 18months or so”  - talk on “Serve Two Masters: Creating Large-Scale Responsive Websites” by Keith Doyle and Paddy Callaghan
  • Dynamic busy individual would works with a mix of in-house and outsourced services which might well be the future for better or for worse“; “Great presentation and interesting to see the range of solutions and strategies been employed” and “Something of a twist in the tail from Stephen. I had expected a possible approach to measuring impact so to have Stephen eloquently and logically argue that it’s not our job was thought-provoking and refreshing. One of my favourite IWMW presenters over the years.” – talk on “Measuring Impact” by Stephen Emmott
  • Interesting to see the direction they’ve taken with their website which I think goes against the grain of what everyone else is doing. Also fantastic to hear about open source technologies that are being used.” – talk on “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Two Years of Running a Content Management Service” by Helen Sargan

But although the plenary speakers and facilitators of the parallel sessions provide the content for the event, it always seems that the sum of greater than the individual parts.  Here are some aspects of the IWMW 2012 event which were particularly liked:

  • Very well organised event, working like clockwork!
  • Well organised. Kudos.
  • Really well organised and a big shout out to the catering staff who rustled up some lovely gluten and dairy-free lunch for me!
  • “Spectacularly organised as ever. Everything seemed to run really smoothly from meeting up with everyone on the Sunday to getting bits and bats for our session to lunches and so on.
  • Well done all!”
  • Spot on
  • I liked the central venue which was easy to find and get to by public transport.
  • Generally very good.
  • The venue this year was excellent. The space available (both accommodation and conference space) were of a high standard. The food should get a special mention. The only slight downside was the distance between the accommodation and the conference.
  • It was nice to see a mix of old and new attendees and I know from talking to some “”newbies”” they really saw the value of the community.

And to conclude:

P.S. To whom it may concern:
Please, please, please. please, please keep funding this event. It is a lifeline to HE institutions and their hard-working web-related staff. It is the only event on the calendar which really gets to the heart of the issues we are all looking at, at the time we are looking at them

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Streaming of IWMW 2012 Plenary Talks – But Who Pays?

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 18 June 2012

 

The sixteenth in the series of annual Institutional Web Management Workshops, IWMW 2012, is now underway. As we were concerned last year that Web team budgets and pressures of work would make it difficult for people to attend a 3-day event, the IWMW 2011 took place over two days. However the feedback we received in the final session last year made it clear that there was demand for the event to revert to its traditional 3 day format.

Since the concerns about budgets and workloads will probably be even more valid this year we were still concerned about the number of delegates. However, following an influx of last minutes bookings, the final numbers are even larger than last year with 170 registered delegates.

We also have a number of sponsors again this year, with Jadu sponsoring the badges and lanyards, TERMINALFOUR are sponsoring a parallel session and Siteimprove providing inserts in the delegate pack. In addition Statistics into Decisions and Gas Mark 8 are co-sponsoring the event amplification and video-streaming of the plenary talks.

Since the University of Edinburgh video-streaming service has other commitments this week, TConsult, who have provided event amplification at IWMW events in the past, will this year also be providing the video-streaming service. The ustream.tv service is being used to deliver the live video stream. However since we are aware that viewers will probably not appreciate the adverts include in the free version of the service, we will be using Watershed, the premium version of the service. The charging for this service is based on viewer hours. Looking at the pricing options it seems that we can pay $49 for a month’s subscription, which gives us 500 viewer hours, with an additional $0.49 per additional viewer hour. This seems reasonable – unless the plenary talks attract a large audience. Since there are 8.5 hours of plenary talks we will be able to cater for 60 people watching all the plenary talks. Based on previous year’s experiences the expected numbers should fall within the standard allowance. However if some of the talks become unexpectedly popular – and the popularity which can be generated by viral social networks such as Twitter – we could be hit with a large bill. We have therefore put a cap on the total number of users. In order to ensure that people who wish to watch a plenary talk do not have access blocked we ask that people watching the live video stream switch off the live stream when the talks they are interested in has finished.

These considerations lead to the question: who should pay for live streams at conferences? At recent IWMW events the live video streaming was provided as part of the service by the host institution. However this year we have had to address the question of the business model for the provision on the service for the first time.

Although we are providing access to an ad-free video-streaming service we cannot commit to doing this in the future. One alternative will be to make use of the free ad-supported version of the service. As illustrated, when you join a stream an advert will be displayed, for about 20 seconds, it would seem.

Adverts which are used to fund a video service which is free at the point of delivery is, of course, something we are all familiar with – ITV have been doing this for many years and we are all willing to watch programmes on commercial channels, provided the content is of interest to us.

I would be interested to hear from people who would not be willing to watch video streaming of content of interest to them on how the costs of the service should be provided. I would, of course, expect such suggestions to be reasonable and feasible: saying that we should simply be getting more money to provide such services is not realistic in the current environment.

A similar question could be asked about the accessibility of recordings of the videos. We do not intend to provide captions for the recordings and, since legislation talks about ‘reasonable measures’ we do not feel there is a legal requirement to do this. We feel that the provision of the live video stream itself enhances the accessibility of the event – a point brought how to me last year when Janet McKnight uploaded a photo of herself watching the live video stream, with her baby in her lap (as illustrated). Put simply, the provision of the live video stream itself enhances access to the content for people who can’t attend the event for a variety of reasons. Having to spend additional money from an undetermined source to caption the videos would potentially undermine the provision of the live video stream itself, forcing us back to the world of siloed conferences in which only paying delegates could participate.

Unless, of course, we could make use of the textual summaries of the plenary talks provided by the official event amplifier on her Twitter account. We did this at IWMW 2010, as can be seen from the accompanying image of the Twitter captions of the talk by Ranjit Sidhu. This will be an approach we will explore again at this year’s event.

I‘ll conclude this post by summarising the policy for video streaming and access to video recording of talks at IWMW events.

In order to maximise the impact of the ideas presented in talks at IWMW events we will seek to support event amplification to enable members of the sector who aren’t physically present to engage in the discussions and sharing of ideas. We will also seek to provide a live video stream of plenary talks and access to recordings of the talks after the event.

We will aim to provide these services in a sustainable fashion. We will be transparent about the ways in which these services are being funded.

Is that a reasonable policy?

Posted in Accessibility, Events | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

What Can schema.org Offer the Web Manager?

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 1 June 2012

I’m pleased to say that we will be running an additional parallel session at the IWMW 2012 event in Edinburgh in just over two weeks’ time. Phil Barker will be facilitating a session which will seek answers to the question What Can schema.org Offer the Web Manager? The session, which will take place on Monday 18 June from 14.00-15.30, will explore ideas Phil described in a recent post which asked Will using schema.org metadata improve my Google rank?

As described in the abstract for the session:

Schema.org is a major new initiative supported by Google, Yahoo, Microsoft Bing and Yandex with the aim of “making it easier for people to find the right web pages”. It is a simplified profile of microdata, a means of embedding metadata in web pages that is aligned with HTML5. It differs significantly from previous attempts at providing resource descriptions for web pages to aid discovery, such as various metadata schema, microformats and RDFa in that it has support from the major search engines plus W3C, making it both standards-based and with vendor support.

As can be seen from his guest post on the Creative Commons blog on the Learning Resource Metadata Initiative Phil has a particular interest is in the potential which schema.org may have in enhancing the discovery of educational resources. However when we discussed his proposal we realised that the issues he would be covering in the session would be of general interest: How can one provide structured metadata in Web pages to facilitate discovery? What is different to use of schema.org to previous metadata proposals such as simply embedding Dublin Core in HTML resources? A common example of use of schema.org is for recipes (as illustrated) – how might one develop a vocabulary relevant to the needs of the higher education sector and, equally important, ensure that search engine vendors understand and process such vocabularies?

Phil’s session on a metadata standard for resource discovery complements the session which Alex Bilbie will be facilitating on the following day (Tuesday 19 June) on Linking You (session C5). As described in the abstract for that session:

This workshop will provide an introduction to the JISC-funded Linking You toolkit. We’ll reflect on the project’s recommendations, dig into the sector-wide review of HEI’s use of identifiers and discuss the resulting draft data model for institutions and possible ways forward for implementation.

At the end of this session, participants should have a better understanding of how identifiers are being used across UK university websites, had a chance to respond to the proposed data model and influence future work in this area.

These two sessions would seem to provide an ideal opportunity for those who have an interest in exploring approaches to enhancing the discovery of a range of resources hosted on the Web.

If you have already booked a place at the IWMW 2012 event and this session is of interest you can change your selected parallel sessions using the username and password you were given when you registered (note that the session has code B7). If you haven’t booked a place for the event which takes place at the University of Edinburgh on 18-20 June, the bookings are still open. And note that although bookings were originally due to close later today, in light of the extended Bank Holiday weekend, which means that the event organisers will not be in the office until later next week, we have decided to keep the online booking system open until Friday 8 June.

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IWMW 2012 Open For Bookings

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 11 April 2012

 

IWMW 2012, University of Edinburgh, 18-20 June

I’m pleased to announce that bookings are now open for IWMW 2012, the sixteenth annual Institutional Web Management Workshop. This year’s event will be held at the University of Edinburgh on 18-20 June. We have reverted back to the three-day format for this year’s event, and since we’ll be starting on the opening morning (rather than after lunch) we are able to provide a fuller programme than usual, with 11 plenary talks and 20 parallel sessions.

A summary of the content of the IWMW 2012 event is given below.

Embedding Innovation

The theme for this year’s event is “Embedding Innovation” . The event will provide an opportunity for those with responsibilities for providing institutional Web services to hear about and discuss ways in which news ways of working are being embedded to reflect technological developments and the changing funding and political environment.

Professor Ferdinand von Prondzynski

I am particularly pleased that this year’s event sees the first plenary talk by a Vice-Chancellor. Professor Ferdinand von Prondzynski, the Principal and Vice-Chancellor at Robert Gordon University who, in addition to being a regular blogger and Twitter user, is also featured in Wikipedia. Professor von Prondzynski will contribute to the event’s theme in asking the question “Going Online – Do Universities really Understand the Internet?“. Having come across Professor von Prondzynski’s blog post on Institutional tweets in January 2011 which began “Do universities that maintain Twitter pages know what they are doing, or why they are doing it?” I am particularly looking forward to this talk which will, perhaps, invite delegates to rethink their approaches to use of online services – after all, if we are looking to embed innovation we should probably rethink the approaches we have traditionally taken in the provision of our services. Earlier this year in a post on “Learning, unlearning and relearning” Steve Wheeler, Associate Professor of Learning Technology in the Faculty of Health, Education and Society at Plymouth University, made this point when he suggested that “there are times when unlearning just has to be done“.

The need to rethink established approaches to the development of Web sites will be continued in EA Draffan’s talk on “Beyond WCAG: Experiences in Implementing BS 8878“. In the talk she will suggest that a resource-based standard such as WCAG may need to be used within the context of a process-based standards and, within the UK, we are now in a position to make use of the BS 8878 Web Accessibility Code of Practice. But are universities, after over ten years of suggesting that conformance to WCAG would bring out universal accessibility, ready to acknowledge that, beyond the simple provision of informational resources, universal accessibility – whilst a laudable goal – may not be achievable?

The final plenary talk on the theme of “Embedding Innovation” will address ways in which institutions should be preparing for the Mobile Web. In a talk entitled “Do I Need an App for That?” Rob Borley will point out that although last year saw the 15 billionth download from the Apple app store and there are now over 500,000 different apps available to consumers, in developing a mobile strategy there is still a legitimate need to ask: “Do I need an app for that?“.

Data: the New Content

The second theme for the plenary talks at IWMW 2012 is “Data: the New Content“. The talks in this session will highlight the opportunities provided for those involved in providing institutional Web services in moving beyond the management of content (often text, images and multimedia resources) into the management of and access to data.

This session will provide an opportunity to hear from open data developments beyond our sector, with Sally Kerr, corporate Project Manager at the City of Edinburgh Council, describing “Open Data Development in the City of Edinburgh Council“.

But once you have open data, what can your (and other) developers do with it? In a talk entitled “Data Visualisation: A Taster” Tony Hirst and Martin Hawksey will illustrate how open data can be gathered, processed and visualised – and they hope that this taster presentation will encourage participants to sign up for their 90 minute “Data Visualisation Kitchen” workshop session (although I should add that participants will need to sign up for the parallel sessions in advance!).

We will not, however, focus only on the interests of policy makers and developers. In a talk entitled “Design Work for Key Information Sets” Stuart Church will outline the user-centred design (UCD) process that was used to design the Key Information Sets (KIS) and discusses some of the design challenges that were faced. In addition, he will consider some of the design approaches that can be used to make online ‘infographics’ more effective. For those who are unfamiliar with KIS, are part of a HEFCE initiative to provide comparable sets of standardised information about undergraduate courses. From September 2012, universities and colleges will be expected to publish these information sets on their web sites.

Institutional Case Studies

In a time of cuts, those who work in institutional Web teams should welcome the new opportunities which will be highlighted in the two strands summarised above. But in addition there will be a continued requirement to manage and develop existing institutional Web services. The third strand on “Institutional case Studies” provides an opportunity to hear from practitioners on the approaches they are taking to their mainstream work activities.

In this session we will hear from Dawn Ellis who will provide answers to the question “What Do You Really Want?, Keith Doyle and Paddy Callaghan who will address the challenges in having to “Serve Two Masters: Creating Large-Scale Responsive Websites“, Helen Sargan on “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Two Years of Running a Content Management Service” and Stephen Emmott who will give the final plenary talk on “Measuring Impact“.

The Parallel Workshop Sessions

Although the plenary talks aim to provide shared experiences for participants, with the opportunity to hear about changes, developments and working practices, the importance of active participation at the event has always been emphasised.

This year there will are currently twenty parallel sessions, which last for 90 minutes, which aim to provide opportunities for active participation.

Topics to be covered in these parallel sessions include addressing the legal implications of cookie legislation, development of mobile services, user centred design techniques, agile development, developing large-scale responsive web site, evaluation of conferencing tools, mobilising WordPress, data visualisation techniques, identifying and responding to emerging technologies, addressing digital literacy challenges and more.

More detailed information about the parallel sessions is available. It should be noted that IWMW 2012 participants will be able to three sessions. In addition, we have kept two sessions free to enable anyone who wishes to organise a session at the last minute can do so.

Booking for the Event

Our Dynamic Earth, venue for the IWMW 2012 reception

The online booking form is now available. The cost is £350 per person with two night’s ensuite accommodation or £300 per person with no accommodation. This will include the meals listed on the booking form and refreshments.

In addition to the main event meal on Monday, on Tuesday there will be a wine reception which will be held at Our Dynamic Earth. As described in WikipediaOur Dynamic Earth is a science centre in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is a prominent visitors attraction in the city [which] sits in the Holyrood area, beside the Scottish Parliament building and at the foot of Arthur’s Seat“.

When you book for the event you will be able to select your parallel sessions. Please note that since places on the parallel sessions are provided on a first-come first served basis, we advise early booking if you wish to guarantee a place on a preferred session.

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Call For Proposals for IWMW 2012

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 6 January 2012

UKOLN’s annual Institutional Web Management Workshop will be held at the University of Edinburgh on 18-20th June 2012.  IWMW 2012 is the sixteenth in the series of events which is aimed at those involved in the provision of institutional Web management services.

This year’s theme is “Embedding Innovation“. At the IWMW 2010 we explored the theme of The Web in Turbulent Times and last year we described institutional approaches for Responding to Change. Now, after having absorbed the implications of reductions in funding and begun the processes of new approaches to delivering services we now wish to explore ways in which embed changes related to new working practices and the rapidly changing technical environment and user expectations, especially from students who will be paying significant amounts of money to attend University.

The call for proposals is now open. Since the event is aimed at a broad section of those involved in the provision of institutional Web services we welcome proposals which cover the spectrum of  interests ranging including the technical challenges of managing institutional Web service, the ways in which a diversity of user needs can be addressed, the ways in which content and services can be managed, the increasingly challenging legal  implications of providing online services, they ways in which the Web can be used to support a broad range of business requirements, the growing importance of social media, the opportunities and challenges posed by Cloud Services, strategies for dealing with a mobile environment, staff development issues, etc.

We welcome submissions for plenary talks. There will be a small number of plenary talks which typically last for 45 minutes and should be of relevance to a broad section of the audience. Since the event has always sought to provide opportunities for active participation we will be providing a larger number of workshop sessions, which normally last for 90 minutes and aim to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to participate actively.  In addition we welcome other ideas, perhaps for panel sessions, debates, and other ways in which the challenges of managing large-scale Web services can be addressed in an informative and, perhaps, fun ways.

If you have never attended an IWMW event before you may wish to view the programme for the IWMW 2011, IWMW 2010 and IWMW 2009 events to get a feel for the range of topics which have been covered.

If you have any queries or would simply like to have a chat about possible contributions, feel free to get in touch with me.

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