CONUL ANNUAL CONFERENCE

Keynote Speakers

Chris Bourg

Director of Libraries at Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Chris Bourg is the Director of Libraries at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where she also has oversight of the MIT Press. She is also the founding director of the Center for Research on Equitable and Open Scholarship (CREOS). Prior to assuming her role at MIT, Chris worked for 12 years in the Stanford University Libraries, most recently as the Associate University Librarian for Public Services. Before Stanford, she spent 10 years as an active duty U.S. Army officer, including three years on the faculty at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Chris has extensive experience promoting open scholarship. She is currently co-chair of the MIT Ad Hoc Task Force on Open Access to MIT’s Research, and is a member of the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine Roundtable on Aligning Incentive for Open Science. She is also a member of the Steering Committee of SocArXiv, an open access platform for social science research; a member of the Harvard Board of Overseers Committee to Visit the University Library, and chair of the Management Board of the MIT Press. She has served on the Board of Directors for the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), and is past chair of the Committee on Diversity and Inclusion of the Association of Research Libraries. In 2016, Chris co-chaired the MIT Ad Hoc Task Force on the Future of Libraries, which produced a bold vision for research libraries in a computational age.

Chris has written and spoken extensively on equitable and open scholarship, the future of research libraries, diversity and inclusion in higher education, and the role libraries play in advancing social justice and democracy. She received her BA from Duke University, her MA from the University of Maryland, and her MA and PhD in sociology from Stanford.

Melissa Highton

Assistant Principal for Online Learning | Director of Learning, Teaching and Web Services, University of Edinburgh

Melissa leads services and projects in support of the University’s strategic priorities for digital and distance learning on global platforms, blended learning, virtual learning environments, technology enhanced learning spaces, the digital student experience and use of the web for outreach and engagement. She has particular interests in digital skills, 21st century curricula, open educational resources, research led teaching and online media. She leads the continuing expansion and diversification of the University website and provision of digital AV technology services in over 400 teaching rooms across the campus.

Melissa is strategic lead in the University for a wide range of technologies and support for innovative learning and teaching, including blended learning tools, bespoke  web development, online video, lecture recording, VLEs, open education resources,  partnerships with platforms such as Coursera, Edx, FutureLearn and Wikimedia. Her teams support a range of online provision including taught online Masters programmes, Micromasters programmes, CPD and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

The Learning, Teaching and Web Directorate at University of Edinburgh is one of the most successful and comprehensive learning technology groups in the UK, with diverse teams of muti-professional staff, student interns and expert consultants.

Melissa is an invited speaker at conferences about learning technology leadership, distance learning strategies, library and learning technology futures, learning innovation, equality,  diversity and inclusion( EDI) and digital skills.

She blogs at https://thinking.is.ed.ac.uk/melissa/ and you can follow her on Twitter @honeybhighton