Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
Sponsored masterclass: Needles in the Haystack : a session by Karger Publishers and Quertle
Wednesday, 19/June/2019:
1:15pm - 2:45pm

Location: Room 103

Session Abstract

Needles in the Haystack

Presenters : Dr. Oliver Renn, ETHZ Zürich;  Jeffrey Saffer  Quertle, LLC, Las Vegas; Daniel EbneterKarger Publishers, Basel  

How can libraries best support researchers to retrieve the relevant information matching their research question within a Systematic Review? Can state-of-the-art technology allow better search management? An Interactive workshop by Karger Publishers and Quertle. 

There are two variables in our setting: the needles and the haystack - the relevant information hidden among the millions of citations for biomedical literature. In our age of information overload, we are quite aware that the haystack will continuously expand, and the needles will become even harder to find. So, what can we do, if we cannot change our two variables?

The solution is neither new, nor extraordinary, but very practical: We change the way we search.

In this interactive workshop, we would like to discuss introducing a third variable: the magnet.

Discovery solutions based on key word or semantic search have not had the anticipated effects, so far. They were neither time-saving, nor able to deal with complex questions. With the introduction of AI this might change – effectively now!

The session will start with a playful introduction into the world of AI and its current use at the ETH/Zurich, followed by a short presentation of the artificial solution developed by Quertle. 

Based on use cases, taken from real-life research, we will discuss the difference between results driven from traditional search versus AI search.

The session will end with a panel discussion. Comments and critical questions by the participants of the workshop are highly welcome. 

Under the umbrella of the main question „Is Artificial Intelligence, including neural networks, a possible solution for the information overflow? Will new technology be the magnet to help researchers find “the needle in the haystack“?” we invite you to ask, participate and discuss with us.

Learning outcomes

Participants will gain understanding of how AI based technology can improve the quality of research and will learn about  methods to introduce new technology to their students and young researchers. 

Type of interactivity 

The workshop will start with a social gathering to get to know each other. During the introduction and the short lecture attendees are invited to ask questions and give their opinions and comments, which will be collected on a white board. The panel discussion will thrive on active engagement of all workshop participants.  

Level: intermediate 

Target audience: Information specialists, librarians, and review authors 

Preparation for the session: Not required. 

Biography and Bibliography

1Dr. Oliver Renn

Oliver Renn joined the ETH Zurich in September 2012 as Head of the Chemistry, Biology, Pharmacy Information Center. After his PhD in bioinorganic Chemistry in 1990 at the University of Dortmund he continued working in cancer research at the University of California at Davis. In 1996, he left academia and went into publishing, lastly as a Publishing Director at Bertelsmann-Springer in Munich. In 2002 he joined the management board of “Oncology World”, a start-up company focusing on knowledge management and discovery in oncology, and from 2003 to 2012 he headed the Scientific Information Center of the Boehringer Ingelheim.

2Jeffrey D. Saffer, Ph.D.

Jeffrey D. Saffer, molecular biologist by training, became an informaticist out of necessity after encountering many Big Data problems. In 2000, he founded his first company, focusing on visualization of biomedical data. Now, as a co-founder of Quertle, he has been a leader in modern discovery and analytics for the literature.

3Daniel Ebneter

Daniel Ebneter is the CEO and a member of the Management Board at Karger Publishers, a globally active, independent, and family-owned medical and scientific publishing house in Basel, Switzerland..Prior to joining Karger in July 2017, Daniel Ebneter was a member of the executive board of the Hogrefe publishing group. Earlier positions include senior roles in business consultancy and industrial trading as well as teaching at universities. He has extensive professional experience in publishing and digital business. Daniel Ebneter holds a master's degree in applied physics, mathematics and computer science from the University of Bern, Switzerland, as well as an Executive MBA in integrated management from the Universities of Applied Sciences Bern and Fribourg, Switzerland.

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