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March 8, 2006

David Levy to Speak About Mindful Work and Technology on March 22

David Levy, holder of the Harissios Papamarkou Chair in Technology and Education at the Library of Congress, will speak about ways to bring contemplative practices into today's harried workplaces, at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, March 22, in Room 119 of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C.

The event, which is sponsored by the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress, is free and open to the public; no reservations are required.

According to Levy, new information technologies, including e-mail and the World Wide Web, have transformed the way people work, allowing them to collaborate over vast distances and to work at all hours of the day and night. But there is increasing evidence that the stress of working in these accelerated, information-saturated ways is taking a toll on workers, contributing to physical and psychological ailments as well as to a loss in attentiveness and time to think.

"There is growing scientific evidence that simple contemplative practices, including meditation and yoga, not only relieve stress but encourage states of greater attentiveness," said Levy. "It seems natural to explore how such practices might help us design workplaces and work technologies that support more healthful and productive forms of work."

Levy, a professor at the Information School of the University of Washington, holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University in computer science and a diploma in calligraphy and bookbinding from the Roehampton Institute, London. He was a member of the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, where his research focused on the nature of documents and on the tools and practices through which they are created and used. His current research focuses on information and the quality of life.

The Harissios Papamarkou Chair in Education and Technology was established at the Library of Congress through a gift from Alexander Papamarkou (1930-1998), an investment banker who was generous in his support of the arts, education and medicine, in honor of his grandfather, a Greek educator. Holders of the Papamarkou Chair focus their research on the Library’s role in education and examine the impact of education and technology on individuals and society.

Through a generous endowment from John W. Kluge, the Library of Congress established the Kluge Center in 2000. The center brings leading scholars together with key Washington policymakers to discuss important world issues, drawing on the Library's incomparable national and international collections. For more information about the Harissios Papamarkou Chair or other fellowships and programs offered by the Kluge Center, visit www.loc.gov/kluge.

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PR 06-060
03/08/06
ISSN 0731-3527

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