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College of Information and Communications

Pew Research Center speaker to deliver annual lecture

Lee Rainie, director of internet and technology for Pew Research Center, will visit campus to deliver the 2018 Deans’ and Directors’ Lecture on Thursday, April 26, at the South Carolina State Library. His presentation, “Trust, Truth and Democracy,” will begin at 7 p.m.

The lecture, which is free and open to the public, is hosted by the School of Library and Information Science.

Rainie will discuss the latest Pew findings about the state of public trust in libraries and other institutions, public thinking about the state of truth in the “post truth” era, and how Americans think about the core elements of democracy, including a free press, the right to vote and the rule of law. In particular, he’ll look at the role of librarians and news organizations as the information and social landscape change.

“Lee Rainie and the work of the Pew Research Center is foundational to our current conversations about trust, information and the media,” says Dr. David Lankes, director of SLIS. “Lee also provides an amazing link between all of our college programs. His experience as a journalist and his work on the perceptions of libraries and librarians makes his a uniquely powerful voice as SLIS and the college move forward.”

The Pew Research Center, a non-profit, non-partisan “fact tank” that studies the social impact of the internet. There, Rainie runs a research project that explores the social impact of digital technologies, as well as the intersection of science and society.

The project has issued more than 650 reports based on its surveys that examine people’s online activities and the internet’s role in their lives.

Rainie is a co-author of “Networked: The New Social Operating System,” which explores the social impact of the internet, mobile phones and social media. He is also co-author of five books about the future of the internet that are based on Pew surveys.

Prior to joining Pew, Rainie was managing editor of U.S. News & World Report for 12 years.

Since 1986, the School of Library and Information Science has held the annual Deans' and Directors' Lecture in honor of previous administrators. The event is typically preceded by the induction of new members into the Beta Omega Chapter of Beta Phi Mu, the national honor society in library and information science. This year’s lecture will kick off with a reception at 5:30 p.m., followed by awards and Beta Phi Mu inductions at 6:30 p.m.

The South Carolina State Library is located at 1500 Senate Street. For more information, contact Mike Corbo at or 803-777-3858.

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