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Bertha Bassam Lecture – Beyond Bindings and Binaries with Professor Lynne Howarth

Submitted on Friday, February 17, 2023

The Faculty of Information and its Alumni Association (FIAA) invite you to the 17th edition of the Bertha Bassam Lecture. The lecture, Beyond Bindings and Binaries, will be delivered this year by Dean and Professor Emerita Lynne Howarth, who will discuss the 21st century information landscape and the “Future Search” planning methodology.

Register by March 27th.


Beyond Bindings and Binaries: The Information Professional in 2050

The dynamic nature of the 21st information landscape challenges us to regularly revisit, rethink, and indeed re-envision, how we create, disseminate, acquire, and find new opportunities in the mass of data in multiple media formats that technological advancements now afford us. Using a “Future Search” planning methodology, the Bertha Bassam Lecture will offer an opportunity to “get there from here,” to engage in a strategic visioning process that reveals what 2050 will hold for, and require of an information professional. Join colleagues in exercising your amateur information futurist.

Event details:

Date: Thursday, March 30th, 2023

Doors: 6:20 PM

Bertha Bassam lecture: 6:35 PM

Cocktail reception: 7:50 PM

Lecture and reception are complimentary, but registration is required. Everyone is welcome.

Location: 2 Sussex Avenue, Innis Town Hall, University of Toronto


Innis College is accessible on the main floor, including Innis Town Hall. There are four dedicated spaces for assistive mobility devices at the rear of Innis Town Hall, and the theatre has power-assisted doors for full access. Please note: while the stage is accessible, stage doors are not power assisted. Assistive-listening devices are also available. An accessible gender-neutral washroom is located next to the Innis Café. Please direct any accessibility inquiries to

About the speaker:

close up of Lynne C. Howarth smiling

Lynne C. Howarth is Professor and Dean Emerita at the Faculty of Information. Professor Howarth completed her Ph.D. in 1990 and was appointed to the Faculty of Information Studies the same year, becoming Dean in 1996. She served in that position until 2003. She was Associate Dean, Research from July 2010 to June 2013, and Interim Director of the Museum Studies Program from September 2008 to December 2009. In June 2014 she received the University of Toronto 25-Year Service Award.

Between 2011 and 2013, Professor Howarth completed a two-year affiliation as Distinguished Researcher in Information Organization at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee iSchool. She was honoured with the Distinguished Scholar Lectio Magistralis in Biblioteconomia, Florence University, Italy, in 2011, and presented with the prestigious 2015 ALISE Service Award in recognition of her contributions to the Association and to LIS education. In January 2017, she received the ALISE / Connie Van Fleet Award for Research Excellence in Public Library Services to Adults.

Professor Howarth has conducted several studies funded by the Social Science and Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). “Enhancing Pathways to Memory” (2008-2012) explored how individuals with early stage Alzheimer’s disease use tangible mementos to recall life stories. “Memory, Meaning-Making, and Collections” (2013-2016), conducted with Professors Cara Krmpotich and Heather Howard (Michigan State University), involved object handling and storytelling sessions with a group of seniors associated with the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto. “Show, Tell, Bridge: The Affordance of Objects in Negotiating Individual and Group Identity” (2015-2019), explored what objects and their stories say about an individual and the ways that mementos serve to forge bonds within groups. Professor Howarth has also worked with Professors Eileen Abels (Simmons University), and Linda Smith (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) on an Institute of Museum and Library Services-funded project, “Envisioning our Information Future and How to Educate for It” (2014-2017), which offered a unique opportunity to reflect on and build progressive, future-focused pedagogy within the Information discipline in North America.

About the lecture series:

The Bertha Bassam Lecture in Librarianship was established by the Faculty’s Alumni Association to honour Dr. Bertha Bassam, Director of the Library School from 1951 to 1964 and a founding member of the Faculty of Library & Information Science at the University of Toronto. She was the author of “The Faculty of Library Science University of Toronto & its predecessors 1911-1972”.

The lectures, which are open to the profession and members of the public, are delivered every three to four years by an outstanding individual, whose topic and experience are relevant to librarians and librarianship. They are selected for their ability to offer thought-provoking ideas and reflections on the important societal roles of the information & cultural professions.