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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


"The Aftermath: Recent Restrictions on Information."

Leslee Shell.

One impact of the terrorist attacks of 9/11 was the enactment of legislation increasing the USA government's authority over civil liberties, withdrawing some public documents from access, and limiting availability of certain "sensitive" scientific materials. In particular, the USA Patriot Act and the Homeland Security bill have implications for the science community. Provisions in the new legislation may limit some foreign students' research with certain biological substances and affect the privacy of library trnasactions and computer records. Some scientists fear that the newly formed Science & Technology Directorate, part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will alternately promote development of science in the interest of national security, but add layers of secrecy to the process of scientific inquiry. Public scrutiny of the federal agencies in charge may be eliminated. Educators are noting changes in availability of ERIC documents.

This interactive session will discuss recent developments, guidelines, policies, and ways academic institutions have responded to the change in information access.


Leslee Shell  (United States)
Science Librarian
Fletcher Library
Arizona State University West

Currently a life sciences and nursing librarian in Phoenix, Arizona, Leslee Shell has experience as a medical and hospital librarian.

  • USA Patriot Act
  • Homeland Security Bill
  • Secrecy in Scientific Information
  • Libraries and Librarianship

(60 min Workshop, English)