Kaser Lecture Series

The Department of Information & Library Science David Kaser Endowed Lecture is a speaker series on topics relevant to the field of library and information science. Established by colleagues and students to honor Distinguished Professor Emeritus David Kaser, the series regularly invites a scholar to campus to deliver a lecture (followed by an open reception) and meet with students and faculty. A beloved professor, Dr. Kaser taught at IU from 1973 until 1991 and remained active in the library and information science community until his death in 2017. Read more about Dr. Kaser.

To be informed of future Kaser Lectures, contact Katie Novak at katinova@indiana.edu. If you wish to support the fund, go to myiu.org and in the “Search All Funds” field, enter “Kaser.”

Past Kaser Lectures:

2018 - Geoffrey Bowker, Professor of Informatics, University of California, Irvine: “How the West was Won by Data.”

2015 - James L. Mullins, ’84 Ph.D., Dean of Libraries at Purdue University: “How Long the Odyssey

2012 – Lorcan Dempsey, Vice President and Chief Strategist of the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC): “The Research Library: Scalabe Efficiency and Scalable Learning

2010 – Jinnie Y. Davis, '81 Ph.D., Coordinating Consultant for The Ohio Board of Regents: "Academic Libraries in the For-Profit Sector"

2009 – John Richardson, Jr., ’78 Ph.D., Professor Emeritus at UCLA: “From Hand Printer to Ecological Informatician: Or, How I Discovered the Lost Ship of the Colorado Desert: - an autobiographical speculation on how the field has changed over my thirty plus year career with advice on focusing on the present, studying the past, and planning for the future..."

2008 – William Crowe, ’86 Ph.D., Librarian Emeritus at the University of Kansas: "The Research Library of the Future: A View from the 1960s Revisited"

2004 - Nicholas Basbanes, Author: "The Permanence of Books in an Impermanent World"

About David Kaser:

Following service with a tank battalion in the Alaskan and European theaters, David Kaser earned degrees from Houghton (AB, 1949), Notre Dame (MA, 1950), and Michigan (PhD, 1956). He then served as Director of Libraries at Vanderbilt University for eight years and at Cornell University for five, and he began teaching at Vanderbilt and at Syracuse University. He joined the IU faculty in 1973, where all of his teaching has been at the graduate level in the School of Library and Information Science.

Dr. Kaser has written, edited, or co-authored fifteen books and some 200 papers, edited two national journals, refereed numerous manuscripts, and participated in many colloquia. He was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1967 and has received other funding for his work from such sources as the National Historical Publications Commission, the Pacific Cultural Foundation, and the American Philosophical Society. Elected to Phi Beta Kappa, he has also served as international president of Beta Phi Mu, the honor society in his field.

Dr. Kaser long maintained an active presence in many parts of the world. He crossed the Pacific Ocean twenty-four times and the Atlantic Ocean thirty-six times researching, lecturing, and consulting for such diverse agencies as the Asian Development Bank and the Agency for International Development. Despite frequent absences from campus, he has never cut a class.

At IU he taught regularly in Bloomington and at IUPUI, and he offered frequent lecture courses across the State through the IHETS television facility. He directed fifty doctoral dissertations here and served on many advisory and dissertation committees. The University presented him a Distinguished Teaching Award in 1981 and the rank of Distinguished Professor in 1986. In the latter year former students and colleagues published a Festschrift in his honor; and upon his retirement from active teaching they endowed a University lectureship in his name.” –via Indiana University Honors & Awards.

Additional Readings
  • Just Lucky, I Guess: My Adventurous Life as a Hoosier Librarian – Autobiography by David Kaser
  • Academic Librarianship Past, Present, and Future: A Festschrift in Honor of David Kaser – Edited by John Richardson, Jr. and Jinnie Y. Davis
    Access Dr. Kaser's In Memoriam Biography.