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New Technologies and Religious Communities

The Center for the Study of Information and Religion in Kent State’s School of Library and Information Science welcomes abstracts for consideration for its fifth annual Conference on Information and Religion, scheduled for June 4 and 5, 2015, at Kent State University.

The conference theme is “New Technologies and Religious Communities.”
David Michels, Head of Public Services at the Sir James Dunn Law Library, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, will present the keynote address.

Technology offers new resources that impact preaching by integrating multimedia in worship, expanding outreach through streaming services and podcasts, and providing live feedback through tools such as Twitter/chat. The life of religious communities is also impacted by new communication technologies that blur the boundaries of local and remote participation and challenge traditional ideas of koinonia. Our keynote speaker and participants will explore these issues and others.

This call for proposals seeks original contributions in all areas related to information and religion. The conference theme invites participants to share their work in a variety of areas that might be called intersections of technology with religion and information. Topics that might be addressed include but are not limited to the following:

  • Uses of information technology and/or social media in preaching, ministry and the life of the religious community as a whole – including (but not limited to) worship, children’s and youth ministries, organizational management, record-keeping, operation of religious libraries;
  • Privacy and security issues in information management or social media applications for religious organizations; – Uses of information by members of religious communities
  • Uses of information to add value to membership in a religious organization;
  • The application of information science/management principles for efficient, timely, and accurate research; – Dissemination of information by religious organizations;
  • Auto-ethnography as a research method in religious organizations;
  • The use of investigative or observational research and its impact on the religious service;
  • Information in its application to clergy and congregations as communities of practice.
  • Prospective participants are encouraged to submit abstracts that report on recent research and scholarship. Contributions to this call for papers should not have been previously published. There are no restrictions on research methodology.


Oct. 1, 2014: Deadline to submit abstracts – Go to and click on the “Submit Event” link.

Nov. 15, 2014: Notification of acceptance

May 1, 2015: Deadline to submit final, completed papers in order for them to be considered for publication in ASIR: Advances in the Study of Information and Religion.

Papers must be in proper APA style. Additional details regarding submission of full papers will be sent to those whose abstracts are accepted for conference presentation. Once selected, presenters are responsible for their own expenses related to the conference, including but not limited to registration fees, lodging, transportation and meals.


For more information, please contact Dr. Don Wicks (, Director of CSIR, or Dr. Dan Roland (, CSIR Primary Researcher.