(March 15th Deadline) CFP for MLA 2023 panels on "What do we want in research & learning platforms of the future?"

Drawing of person before a computer workstation depicted in cyberpunk or steampunk style
Tuesday, March 15, 2022 - 3:00am to Wednesday, March 16, 2022 - 2:55am
CFP: Modern Language Association Convention 2023 Call for Panels Organized by the MLA Committee on Information Technology
Research and teaching are core missions of our higher-ed institutions. Yet when it comes to major information technology (IT) platforms and services—general-purpose document-creation and management platforms, learning management systems, proprietary databases, and data services—as well as more specialized tools for video conferencing (and remote instruction), surveying, mapping, design and visualization, etc.—researchers and teachers are accustomed to reacting to (or critiquing) directions set by others. They are latecomers to decisions that result in acquisitions of large enterprise systems that bundle research and teaching IT into business models originally intended for industry or other institutions with different student populations and needs. Administrative or support demands unrelated to higher-ed’s core functions and instead common to _all_ institutions (communications, document creation, storage, management, payroll, timekeeping, security, etc.) thus come to determine IT investments that can be millions of dollars each year per institution.

What if, instead of merely reacting, educators led with their visions of long-term directions for research and teaching IT platforms? What if they set forth clear goals for future IT environments whose material, operational, organizational, and labor infrastructures and functions align with core research and teaching missions, and did so in ways that are ethical and sustainable? What could _having a plan_, even if at first only impractical, give scholars as leverage in the shared-governance conversations they will need to have over the next decade with university administrators, IT industry representatives, staff, students, and others (including those from their ranks who work in relevant areas of engineering, education, or policy research)? We invite short papers for two panels that plan, speculate about, or suggest technologies or strategies  optimal for supporting our scholarship and instruction.

Panel 1: What do we want in a research platform of the future?
Instead of just critiquing major information technology (IT) platforms that higher-ed institutions commit to, panelists “lead with the solution.” They set forth visions, plans, and ethical, sustainable principles for the research IT of the future.

Panel 2: What do we want in a learning platform of the future?
Beyond critiquing major information technology (IT) platforms such as learning management systems at their institutions, panelists “lead with the solution.” They set forth visions, plans, and ethical, sustainable principles for the teaching IT of the future.

Abstracts: 300 words or less, by the end of the day (all time zones): 15 March 2022. Please submit your abstract using this Google Formhttps://forms.gle/6usmSxEmhD1xpKtJ8

(CFP as posted on the MLA Committee on Information Technology's blog: https://infotech.mla.hcommons.org/2022/cfp-mla-2023-call-for-panelists/)

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