U of T’s Faculty of Information expands with five appointments
Five new faculty members have joined the University of Toronto’s Information School (iSchool) for the 2012/13 academic year teaching and researching in the areas of museum studies, communications, databases, and libraries. These professors round out a full complement of expertise for the Faculty’s 20 full-time professors and more than 30 adjunct instructors.
Originally from Greece and with a degree in engineering, Periklis Andritsos has joined us as an Assistant Professor to teach databases — new field for the iSchool. He holds an M.Sc. and Ph.D. degree in Computer Science from U of T. Dr. Andritsos’ research focuses on the analysis of large repositories and, more specifically, the structure discovery in order to facilitate design and speed up querying.
Costis Dallas joins the iSchool as an Associate Professor and Director of Museum Studies after 15 years teaching and researching in the field of cultural heritage management and advanced technologies with the Department of Communication, Media and Culture of Panteion University, Athens. His research interests are mainly in the field of digital heritage and museum informatics.
Patrick Keilty comes to us as an Assistant Professor in the library portfolio. His writing examines and critiques knowledge structures, digital culture, digital humanities, gender and sexuality, intersectionality, and science and technology studies. Prof. Keilty’s teaching interests also include information structures, information behavior, critical theory, sexual representation, and queer media, art, and technology.
With expertise in cultural and communication theory, Irina Mihalache will be an Assistant Professor, arriving in January 2013 to teach in Museum Studies. Dr. Mihalache received her MA in French Studies from New York University and her PhD in Communication from the School of Journalism and Communication at Carleton University. Her research and teaching interests revolve around museum studies, food cultures, space theory and television studies.
Joining us to offer a new area at the iSchool, Leslie Shade comes to us as an Associate Professor of Communications. Her research focus is on the social and policy aspects of information and communication technologies (ICTs), with particular concerns towards issues of gender, youth and political economy.
“These professors infuse new expertise and teaching strength to our outstanding faculty complement, and I am excited that our students will benefit from the innovative research and scholarship that each of these new hires brings to the Faculty of Information,” says Dean Seamus Ross.
Periklis Andritsos received his B.Sc. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece. He then moved to Toronto for his graduate studies and holds an M.Sc. and Ph.D. degree in Computer Science from the University of Toronto.
Professor Andritsos' research focuses on the analysis of large repositories and, more specifically, the structure discovery in order to facilitate design and speed up querying. He has developed a clustering algorithm for categorical data, which has also formed the basis of his novel work on discovering alternative schemas in databases with inconsistencies and errors. His techniques have also been used and patented in the industry.
In 2008, he co-founded and was the lead research scientist of Thoora.com, a start-up company specializing in collecting and bringing forward the user reaction to current news stories in social media platforms (Twitter, blogs etc.). Thoora received one of the 50 "best start-up" awards in the TechCrunch50 2009 competition. In 2010, as a member of the Ontario Cancer Institute at the University Health Network in Toronto, he used his clustering expertise in the automatic discovery of protein-protein interactions from text.
During his years in academia at the University of Toronto (1998-2005), the University of Trento, Italy (2005-2008) and the Free University of Bozen/Bolzano (2011-2012) he has supervised M.Sc. and Ph.D. students and has designed and taught numerous courses in Databases, Information Systems, Data Mining and Machine Learning. He has also coordinated and participated in the following projects: OKKAM-Enabling the web of entities (University of Trento, 2008), the Bolzano-Innsburck-Trento (2005-2008) joint project for fostering research and collaboration among the Universities of the three cities, FITTS (2011-2012) dealing with the automatic planning of itineraries for tourists based on Points-of-Interests (POIs) and user preferences. He is a senior member of the IEEE Computer Society and the Association for Computing Machinery.
Within the Faculty of Information, Professor Andritsos is planning to continue applying his multi-disciplinary expertise on the analysis of big data sources and the gain of intelligence and explanation after the application of existing and new data mining techniques. Current web-page: http://www.cs.toronto.edu/~periklis
Dr. Costis Dallas
Prof. Dallas holds MPhil and DPhil degrees in Classical Archaeology from the University of Oxford. He joins the Faculty of Information, University of Toronto as Associate Professor and Director of Museum Studies after fifteen years of teaching and research in the field of cultural heritage management and advanced technologies with the Department of Communication, Media and Culture of Panteion University, Athens. Before that, he worked for many years in the museums and cultural informatics sector.
He taught and continues to teach, at undergraduate and postgraduate level, on courses spanning a broad range of topics within the broader field of arts and cultural management, museums and heritage studies, including courses on museum management, collections management, cultural heritage informatics, digital collections, new media in museums, as well as material culture and heritage theory.
Costis' research interests are mainly in the field of digital heritage and museum informatics. He presently works on developing a theoretical framework for the digital curation of “thing cultures”, integrating historical approaches to the representation and study of cultural objects with methodologies, infrastructures and environments intended for the management, preservation and use of digital information. He is a Research Fellow of the Digital Curation Unit, "Athena" Research Centre, and a principal investigator in the CARARE – Connecting archaeology and architecture in Europeana project, working on the specification, design and implementation of a repository-based architecture for the management, enrichment and curation of site, building and archaeological feature-related metadata for Europeana harvesting and dissemination.
He also worked recently within DCU on developing a model for representing scholarly information practice of humanities researchers in the context of Preparing DARIAH, the digital research infrastructure for the arts and humanities European network of excellence, and he is currently investigating scholarly information requirements for the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure project. He is also interested in applying a cultural historical activity approach to develop an understanding of the "lifeworlds" shaping diverse aspects of arts and heritage-related practices, through his involvement in research projects focusing on professional and amateur creativity in the arts, on the effect of information technology on museum work, and on museum visitor experience. Since March 2011 he is a member of the Board of Directors of the Acropolis Museum of Athens.
Prof. Keilty joins the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto as an Assistant Professor. He has previously been a Visiting Assistant Professor in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh and Lecturer in the Department of Information Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he earned his PhD/ MLIS in Information Studies, with a concentration in Women’s Studies.
His writing examines and critiques knowledge structures, digital culture, digital humanities, gender and sexuality, intersectionality, and science and technology studies. With Rebecca Dean, he is co-editor of Feminist and Queer Information Studies Reader (forthcoming). With Katie Shilton, he is currently co-editing Critical Information Studies. In addition, he is editing Gender and Sexual Boundaries, and preparing a monograph, entitled Seeking Sex: Embodiment and Electronic Culture, which examines how the Internet has reconstituted our ways of being sexual. His most recent essays have appeared in Knowledge Organization, Proceedings of the Ethics of Information Organization, Proceedings of the iConference, and InterActions. He has recently presented papers at the iConference, the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, and Thinking Gender.
Professor Keilty’s teaching interests include digital culture, information structures, information behavior, critical theory, digital humanities, sexual representation, and queer media, art, and technology. At the University of Toronto, he will offer a class jointly with the Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies.
He was previously the editor of InterActions and has variously worked at the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, the American Library Association’s Washington Office, the Westminster Archive Centre (London, England), the Library of Congress, and the American University Library.
Among his awards and honors, his dissertation received the Center for the Study of Women/ Graduate Division Irving and Jean Stone Dissertation Year Fellowship. He has received additional education at the School of Criticism and Theory, Cornell University; the Art Center College of Design; and the California Rare Book School.
Dr. Irina D. Mihalache
Dr. Mihalache received her MA in French Studies from New York University and her PhD in Communication from the School of Journalism and Communication at Carleton University. Dr. Mihalache is a cultural and communication studies scholar whose research and teaching interests revolve around museum studies, food cultures, space theory and television studies. Her expertise in cultural and communication theory is reflected in an interdisciplinary approach to both research and teaching that resulted so far in a dissertation project about post-colonial museums in France, publications on the cultural significance of restaurants in museums and short articles on the performance of masculinity on cooking shows.
Dr. Mihalache has taught courses on museums and national identity, communication and space and food and identity. As a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Global Communications at the American University of Paris, Dr. Mihalache continued her research on post-colonial museums in Paris, taught courses on topics ranging from fashion studies to space theory and organized a series of seminars about “communicative objects. Dr. Mihalache has presented her work on museums and eating spaces at various international conferences, most recently at Crossroads in Cultural Studies in Paris.
Currently and looking into the future, Dr. Mihalache is working on two main projects: the construction of digital identities for post-colonial French museums; and the significance of eating spaces, which have become autonomous cultural lieux, in contemporary North American cultural institutions. In addition to these projects, Dr. Mihalache is writing a series of short articles to be published on Flow TV on the construction and representation of masculinities in the Food Network kitchens and is preparing an article for publication in Museum International on a recent exhibition about representations of otherness on view at the Quai Branly museum in Paris.
In her spare time, Dr. Mihalache enjoys visiting museums and galleries, watching television shows as diverse as Supernatural, Mad Men, and Parks and Recreation (which she also uses when she teaches). In her courses, she is known for using popular books such as The Hunger Games, The Help and Watchmen. She also likes to bake and is hoping to find time in the future to work on an edited collection about contemporary cupcake cultures.
Leslie Regan Shade
Prof. Shade’s research focus since the mid-1990’s has been on the social and policy aspects of information and communication technologies (ICTs), with particular concerns towards issues of gender, youth and political economy.
Her research promotes the notion of the public interest in ICT policy; publications, community outreach and student supervision have as their goal the promotion of a wider popular discourse on information and communication policy issues and media reform in Canada and internationally for a diverse public and policy audience. This includes an ongoing commitment to building participatory scholar-activist networks.
Formerly President of the Canadian Communication Association, her various publications have drawn on a diverse range of topics from a political economic focus: media concentration in Canada; neoliberal tenets in Canadian telecommunications policy in Canada; community informatics in Canada; the revised discourse of modernization in ICT4D (information and communication technologies for development) and M4D (mobiles for development); gender and technological design; social media and social justice; privacy issues in Facebook; a feminist political economy of the internet; and the commodification of young people’s online spaces.
Recent books include Connecting Canadians?: Investigations in Community Informatics, (Athabasca University Press (2012), and The Internet Tree: The State of Telecom Policy in Canada 3.0, (Ottawa: Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives) (2011).
Arguing that policymakers need to think critically – and creatively – about developing digital literacy skills that consider children and young people as valid and active citizens, particularly those focusing on the authenticity and prevalence of commercial content, raising awareness of privacy rights, and copyright education, Shade’s current SSHRC-funded research is titled Young Canadians, Participatory Digital Culture and Policy Literacy.
Prof. Shade was formerly at Concordia University’s Department of Communication Studies in Montreal, and obtained her PhD from McGill University (MLIS, UCLA; BA, UCSD).
Teaching at iSchool:
INF 1001H, Knowledge and Information in Society (INF 2240H) Political Economy and Cultural Studies of Information.