A quick review of our faculty pages shows a wide range of research interests and expertise.

Projects are funded by a variety of sources, including the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Library of Medicine (NLM), and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Colleagues from other departments and organizations, as well as SILS students, work collaboratively with faculty on their research. The results are shared through published works, conference presentations and proceedings, special speaking engagements, symposia and other events.

  Read   Watch Listen

Core Strengths

Our faculty's research and outreach have enabled the UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) to become a global leader in four specific areas:

Digital Curation

Digital curation involves selecting, maintaining, preserving, and adding value to digital content throughout its lifecycle. Libraries, archives, and museums have been actively involved with digital curation for decades, digitizing historical documents and preserving born-digital materials. Increasingly, businesses and government agencies are using digital curation practices to improve the quality and usability of their data and other digital assets. Successful digital curation mitigates digital obsolescence and data degradation, keeping information accessible to users indefinitely. Digital curation encompasses digital asset management, data curation, digital preservation, and electronic records management.

SILS faculty with expertise and interests related to digital curation:

Health Informatics

Health informatics refers to the optimal use of information, often aided by the application of technology, to improve individual health, health care, public health, and biomedical research. The UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) is a lead partner in the Carolina Health Informatics Program (CHIP). A truly interdisciplinary program, CHIP brings together faculty from public health, medicine, nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, information science, computer science, and other units across campus. Researchers examine numerous topics, from personal health information seeking behaviors, to wearable health technology, to data visualization for improving diagnoses and outcomes. 

SILS faculty with expertise and interest related to health informatics:

Information Interaction & Retrieval

In the digital age, humans encounter more information from more sources through more mediums than at any time in history. By better understanding how people seek, interpret, and use information, we can optimize new technology and create better systems and interfaces, which can lead to higher levels of prosperity and wellbeing around the globe. We must also critically examine the negative impact of the modern information ecosystem, including violations of personal privacy, the spread of misinformation and disinformation, and the risks of information overload.

SILS faculty approach these challenges from a variety of angles. Visit the faculty pages below to learn more:

Librarianship of the 21st Century

SILS faculty study how new technologies and evolving purposes create new challenges and opportunities for today’s libraries. In addition to sharing their findings with the academic community and their current students, faculty often develop programs that can help practicing librarians better meet their community or organization’s information and learning needs. From bridging the digital divide to creating more inclusive spaces, SILS faculty strive to find modern approaches to the traditional values of library science: universal access, collaboration, intellectual freedom, self-directed learning, organization, and stewardship. 

Research Labs

Center for Information, Technology, and Public Life (CITAP)
CITAP is dedicated to researching, understanding, and responding to the growing impact of the internet, social media, and other forms of digital information sharing.

Interactive Information Systems Lab (IISL)
At the IISL, researchers study how people search for information and interpret results, and develop new tools and approaches to help people find what they need faster.

Community Equity, Data & Information Lab (CEDI) Lab
CEDI works with community members, not-for-profit organizations, and other researchers to understand and support the information, data, and technology needs and use of people, communities, and individuals who are traditionally marginalized.

Visual Analysis and Communication Lab (VACLab)
VACLab conducts research at the intersection of interactive visualization, human-computer interaction, and machine learning.