Speaker Profiles

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Speaker: Richard Gaston, Addleshaw Goddard LLP.

Presentation: Parallel session 3B - "From albatross to chameleon: the future of business information research in law firm libraries."

Richard GastonProfile: Richard has over ten years experience delivering and managing business information research in a range of professional services contexts. He began his career at Lehman Brothers, providing business research as part of a global Information Services team, later combing this with management of Lehman's outsourced business research function. A well-timed move prior to one of the largest corporate bankruptcies in history took him to the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) - migrating his information management and business research skills to manage a team and resources dedicated to winning foreign direct investment into the Northwest of England; this role had a significant, directly client-facing aspect as part of the NWDA's business development activities. He escaped the bonfire of the quangos only lightly singed and is currently Information Services Manager for Addleshaw Goddard, a management role within a team providing sector-focussed knowledge and intelligence supporting the Firm's business development activity.

For more information regarding this parallel session, please see the BIALL website.

Posted by Sally Peat at 10:15 0 comments  

Speaker Profiles

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Speaker: Iain Dunbar, LAC Group & Dr Paul Clough, University of Sheffield

Presentation: Parallel session 4B - "Exploiting search trails to improve information access, discovery and learning in law firms"


Iain Dunbar

LAC Group provides consultancy and managed services to law firms across the USA and is now established in the UK. The company is committed to improving information and knowledge management provision across a wide variety of organisations, also having clients in the government, corporate and academic sectors. Iain is General Manager of LAC Group’s UK operations and was formerly Director of a leading LMS provider, developing and supplying software to organisations worldwide

Dr. Paul Clough

Dr. Paul Clough is a Senior Lecturer in Information Retrieval at the University of Sheffield’s Information School, one of the international group of world-leading iSchools, and recognised as the premier school of its kind in the UK. His research interests mainly revolve around developing technologies to assist people with accessing and managing information. He is Scientific Director of an EU-funded project called PATHS (Personalised Access To Cultural Heritage Spaces) that is developing technologies to support information exploration and discovery through digital cultural heritage collections. 

For more information regarding this parallel session, please see the BIALL website.

Posted by Sally Peat at 17:09 0 comments  

BIALL 2012 Quiz final team scores, positions & photos!

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

The final team scores and positions from the BIALL 2012 Quiz are now available – see list below.  The Cogwheel Trust International and Wallace Breem Memorial Award will share the £1030.76 raised from the event – thanks to Prenax and Wildy & Son for their continuing generous support and to everyone who came along on Tuesday evening.
Roll on 2013 and your chance to deprive the Inner Temple team of a hat-trick of victories!


Please see below for some of the team names:

Team Name
* 2nd after tiebreaker
Contributed by: Lynne Cameron

Posted by Sally Peat at 10:04 0 comments  

Speaker Profiles

Monday, 19 March 2012

Sara Batts, Kirkland & Ellis LLP; Susanna Winter, Baker & McKenzie;
Jas Breslin, Morrison & Foerster

Presentation: Parallel session 5B - "Communication, Culture and Context: Best Practice for Working Internationally"


Sara BattsSara Batts

Sara Batts is Library Services Co-ordinator for the London office of Kirkland & Ellis International LLP. Sara graduated from City University in 2006. Prior to undertaking this career-changing MSc Information Science, Sara held a number of challenging posts including organising conferences for a professional organisation.

Jas Breslin

Jas BreslinJas Breslin has worked as an information professional in the law firm environment for over 12 years. She is currently Regional Information Resources Manager at Morrison & Foerster, responsible for library resources in the London and Brussels offices, and has worked there since 2005.

Abstract: Between them, Susanna, Jas and Sara have 18 years' experience working in international law firms. This session will help you to understand the differences in communication and culture between key jurisdictions and the wider context in which working cultures are embedded. We will explore the assumptions your US colleagues might make about a UK-based information professional, discuss key working practices in Asia & the Middle East, and consider our experiences of supporting European colleagues. There will be opportunities to ask questions and learn from the presenters' experiences to help participants work more effectively and collaboratively with colleagues you may never actually meet.

For more information regarding this parallel session, please see the BIALL website.

Posted by Sally Peat at 10:26 0 comments  

Wildy BIALL Law Librarian of the Year Award 2012

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

The Wildy BIALL Law Librarian of the Year Award was established in 2005. From 2007 it became the responsibility of the Awards & Bursaries Committee (ABC) who now administer this prestigious award. The award is generously sponsored by Wildy & Sons Ltd.

The annual award of £500 is made, courtesy of Wildy's, to an individual law librarian / legal information professional who has made a significant contribution to the work of BIALL and/or the legal information world, either in the UK, Ireland or overseas.

For more information please see the BIALL website.

Posted by Sally Peat at 10:56 0 comments  

Another Great BIALL Quiz!

In this guest blog Libby Whitethread gives us her account of last nights BIALL quiz!

Last night, 18 teams gathered at the Penderel's Oak, Holborn, for the BIALL quiz.  Hosted by the legendary John Evans (LLS/Prenax) the evening kicked off with the marathon round, comprising a number of cryptic chocolate clues (e.g. Question = Where refined people live. Answer = Quality Street).   Other rounds included numbers (v tricky!), music (I realised at this point I spent way too much time in the 1980's listening to the radio in my bedroom), a logo round (compiled by Richard Grove) and the ever-popular faces round (during which a photo of Heather Mills brought up such diverse "answers" as Marilyn Manson and Lady Gaga).

The eventual winners ("Where's Michael" from Inner Temple, scoring 95 points) were announced, thereby retaining their title as BIALL quiz champions.  Congratulations!  Hot on their heels, and joint second with 93 points each, were the teams from Hogan Lovells ("The John Evans Fan Club (2)"*) and Allen & Overy ("Boolean Operators").  A closely fought tie-breaker resulted in the JE Fan Club (2) claiming the 2nd prize – a selection of classy Penguin mugs.

Many thanks to John, Lynne Cameron, Mark Haines, Wildy's, Prenax and everyone else who worked so hard to make this a really special evening. The proceeds from the evening were split between 2 charities: the Cogwheel Trust and the Wallace Breem Fund.  A date for your diaries …. John is planning to host another quiz in October.  Make sure you don’t miss out and look out for publicity nearer the time!

(*It should be mentioned that 2 teams had the bright idea of currying favour with the quizmaster by calling themselves the "John Evans Fan Club" – hence "(2)")

Posted by Philip Cable at 09:30 0 comments  

A Human Resource - BIALL Conference 2012

Monday, 12 March 2012

In this guest blog Jas Breslin explains why you should be at BIALL 2012. You will find her presenting at the parallel session "Research@Mofo: Providing a virtual enquiry service and co-presenting "Communication, Culture and Context: Best Practice for Working Internationally" Find more details here.

You are an information professional. You find information from all over the world without even leaving your office. You already know how to use all the databases at your workplace, and your clientele seem happy with what you do for them. So just what would you gain from your attendance at the BIALL Conference?

The short answer is meeting people. While you might, perhaps reasonably enough, ask yourself why you need to go through the expense of time and money travelling to another city to meet with lots of other people who do the same job as you from their own desk, maybe you should also ask yourself just who are these other people – and what might you learn from them?

Nothing beats meeting and interacting with other people from within your profession, people who face the same problems as you do, and people who might well have an answer to those problems.

Okay, you might say you can use social networking tools to reach out and connect with other people. But who should you contact? You can Tweet endlessly about what you are up to. But will people follow you if they don’t know anything about you? How can you connect with the people that matter?

And yes, your clientele are satisfied with the job you do, but could you be impressing them with a much better service if you knew how to locate information more quickly, or (importantly these days) more cheaply? Is there something more you could be doing to strengthen your position within your organisation, by broadening the worth of your work? Chances are that other people in the same profession will be able to help.

Not convinced? Well, just imagine if your library budget is slashed and you have to get rid of some of your beloved resources, either books or online databases, or both. How are you going to run the same service you always did without having trusted contacts and colleagues to help and advise you on how to locate information from other sources? How do you get an impartial overview of other suppliers and vendors in the marketplace, and how do you connect with them to build a lasting relationship?

The amazing thing is that there are so many ways that the BIALL Conference can help you develop your service and your own personal skills. The Conference this year is being held in Belfast, and the main conference and accommodation will be under one roof. This provides the perfect opportunity for delegates to chat together informally over breakfast, lunch, dinner or even a beer, as well as to gather together at formal plenary and parallel sessions to discuss ways to improve our day to day working life. There are opportunities at most presentations to ask questions, and gain the benefit of the experience of a genuine expert in his or her field.

But probably the most important thing you will take away from a BIALL Conference is the list of new contacts you have made, the little solutions to problems that have been bugging you for months on end, and the knowledge of a handful of new resources that will change the way you handle a particular research request.

So yes, you are an information professional. You find information from all over the world without leaving your office. But what more can you do with the knowledge you could gain from a few days in Belfast? How much further could you reach?

Contributed by: Jas Breslin

Posted by Philip Cable at 09:18 1 comments  

Looking Forward: BIALL Conference 2012 Belfast

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

In this guest post Therese Broy the Head Librarian at Arthur Cox looks forward to BIALL 2012.

It is hard to believe that it is almost 20 years since I attended my first BIALL Conference in Edinburgh in September 1992.

I had no idea at that time how important a role BIALL would play in my professional life.

Over the years I have learned much from my colleagues in BIALL, shared ideas and experiences and enjoyed many social events at the annual conference. I have gained so much knowledge from the great variety of presentations and also from the suppliers at the exhibition.

I am really looking forward to attending the 2012 Conference in Belfast. It is such a great opportunity to meet new people and for me personally to catch up with many friends I have made in the profession and also amongst the suppliers who will be exhibiting.

The BIALL Conference is even more relevant today as we face the many challenges we are dealing with. It offers a unique opportunity to share problems with colleagues, to put a face to the name of people you have only met on email or by phone and to have some really good fun networking and exploring a new city.

Posted by Philip Cable at 11:20 0 comments  

Details of the application process to attend the CALL Conference and the AALL Conference for 2012

Monday, 5 March 2012

BIALL's Awards & Bursaries Committee will be pleased to consider applications to attend the CALL Conference, Toronto, Canada, 6th - 9th May 2012 and the AALL Conference, Boston, USA, 21st - 24th July 2012.

Applicants must be BIALL personal members and should complete the Overseas Bursary Application Form, available to download on the BIALL Awards & Bursaries webpage - http://www.biall.org.uk/pages/overseas-conference-bursaries.html.  Your application should include details on why you are particularly interested in your chosen conference, and how the specific  programme relates to your role.

CALL Conference - you can get full details about the CALL Conference, including the programme, via the CALL website http://www.callacbd.ca/en/node/530

The deadline for applications for bursaries to attend the CALL Conference  is Friday 16th March 2012.

AALL Conference - you can get full details about the AALL Conference, including the programme, via the AALL wesite http://www.aallnet.org/events

The deadline for applications for bursaries to attend the AALL Conference is Friday 25th May 2012.

Contributed by: Angela Donaldson, Chair of BIALL's Awards & Bursaries Committee

Posted by Sally Peat at 10:08 0 comments