ALLA 2013 – Experiences

By Holger Aman

My experience of ALLA Agitations began with the social media panel. It was a sensational cross section of views on social media in the law and the highlight for me was hearing Judge Gibson and her (relatively avant garde) views on social media use by the judiciary.

I was fortunate enough to introduce Kay Tucker and Carolyn Knaggs, from Monash University and their discussion on engagement in training. I will certainly be borrowing ideas around getting law students to actively participate in training as a way of raising engagement.

Cindy Martin and Alicia Cohen presented an innovative ‘rolling panel’,which had three groups of three talking about their experience in the ‘middle ground’ of their professional lives. I personally found this incredibly interesting, and the format was probably my favourite yet. It allowed a lot of content to be covered, while still remaining fresh and engaging.

The conference dinner was simply magnificent. It was a delightful (and very Sydney-esque) evening spent eating, drinking and networking by the harbour. The photobooth also got quite a work out!

Hearing the President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Beazley speak, was both entertaining and inspirational. It truly did make me proud to be a court librarian, supporting the work of Judges. I was rather pleased to hear her talk about recent cases that I had been following including Norrie v NSW Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages. It was fascinating to hear her perspective on such things.

David Shumaker provided a glimpse into the world of the embedded librarian and raised some very interesting points. For me, I was especially interested in his views on the librarian being known less as a stand-alone resource, but rather as an integral member of the team that was a link to resources.

It was my great pleasure to speak on the 10×10 panel and I believe we were fortunate enough to be granted one of the best audiences of the conference. My fellow presenters were informative and erudite, making the enormous hall seem far less daunting a place to speak in.

The knowledge café was a great place to share some ideas on training in an informal, collaborative and intimate format. It was nice to be able to discuss tricks and ideas with law librarians from across the disciplines.

These were the events that I was privileged enough to attend and I heartily look forward to next year!

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