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College of Information and Communications

Faculty and Staff

R. David Lankes, Ph.D.

Title: Director, School of Information Science
Associate Dean, College of Information and Communications
Department: School of Information Science
College of Information and Communications
Phone: 803-777-3858
Fax: 803-777-7938
Office: School of Information Science
Davis College, Room 113C
1501 Greene Street
Columbia, SC 29208
LinkedIn: My LinkedIn profile
Resources: Personal website
Curriculum Vitae


B.F.A., Special Studies in Art, Syracuse University
M.S., Telecommunications, Syracuse University
Ph.D., Information Transfer, Syracuse University


Prior to joining UofSC, Dr. R. David Lankes served as professor and Dean's Scholar for New Librarianship at Syracuse University's School of Information Studies. He has served on advisory boards and study teams in the fields of libraries, telecommunications, education, and transportation including at the National Academies.

Lankes has been a visiting fellow at the National Library of Canada, The Harvard School of Education, France’s national library school Enssib, and was the first fellow of ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy.

His book, The Atlas of New Librarianship won the 2012 ABC-CLIO/Greenwood Award for the Best Book in Library Literature. 


Lankes is a passionate advocate for libraries and their essential role in today’s society. He also seeks to understand how information approaches and technologies can be used to transform industries. 

Funded Research

2015-Present Community as Collection: Building the Community Profile System, IMLS. Co-PI. A three-year investigation into building a community profile system to allow libraries to better connect to community expertise. $281,000

2015-Present Expect More Collaboratory, Various. PI. A two-year collaborative effort to develop advocacy and training materials for librarians and libraries based on the Expect More book. $63,000

2014-Present Design On Learning: 21st Century Online Learning For Library Workers, IMLS. Co-PI. A three-year continuing education (CE) development and implementation partnership project among South Central Regional Library Council, Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies, and the NY 3Rs Association, Inc. Design on Learning will 1) enable librarian-trainer participants to successfully transfer their in-person teaching skills/pedagogy to the online environment; 2) enable librarian-trainers to evaluate and gain experience with various delivery platforms; and 3) teach library workers to learn effectively in the online environment.

2012-Present Project ILEAD USA, IMLS. Chair of the Instructor Corps. A three-year continuing education initiative that directly addresses the need to expand librarians’ leadership abilities to use participatory technology to effectively engage their libraries’ constituents. The primary goals of this project are 1) to help library staff understand and respond to user needs through the application of participatory technology tools, and 2) the creation of an easy-to-replicate model program. $470,000

2012-2013 Cyber Security and Information Systems, U.S. Department of Defense. Researcher. Assist Quanterion, as it operates the CSIAC, in developing a community of practice platform. $307,000


Lankes seeks to combine theory and practice covering large scale ideas with hands on projects.


Lankes, R. David (2016). The New Librarianship Field Guide. Cambridge, Ma: MIT Press

Lankes, R. David (2016). Expect More: Demanding Better Libraries For Today's Complex World, Second Edition. Jamesville, NY: Riland Publications. (also available as an audio book).

Lankes, R. David (2011). The Atlas of New Librarianship. Cambridge, Ma: MIT Press. – 2012 ABC-CLIO/Greenwood Award for the Best Book in Library Literature. Translations: Italian [L'atlante della biblioteconomia moderna], Chinese in process.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.