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Emeritus Professor of Information Science, University of Pretoria

Professor Dick was appointed as Head of Department on 1 July 2016. He is also Chairperson of the School of Information Technology in the EBIT Faculty. Having been attached to the University of the Western Cape for ten years, and the University of South Africa for ten years, where he was a Deputy Dean from 2001-2003, Professor Dick joined the Department of Information Science at the University of Pretoria in May 2003. He has extensive experience in teaching at all levels in Information Science in both contact and distance education environments. He worked in several academic and professional committees and served on national committees in education and in library and information services. In 2008 he was a member of the technical team responsible for drafting the Department of Arts and Culture's Library and Information Services (LIS) Transformation Charter. From 2009 to 2011 he was Deputy Chairperson of the IFLA committee of Freedom of Access to Information and Freedom of Expression.

In 2012, the Minister of Arts and Culture appointed him as Chairperson of the National Council of Library and Information Services (NCLIS). Unisa Press published his monograph The Philosophy, Politics, and Economics of Information (2002, re-printed 2006). The University of Toronto Press published The hidden history of South Africa's book and reading cultures in 2012, and the South African edition was published in 2013 by the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal Press. These books have been widely reviewed. A number of newspaper articles, and a book chapter, based on his research have appeared recently (See below). The National Research Foundation rated Professor Dick as an internationally acclaimed researcher in 2016.

He reviews manuscripts for a number of scholarly journals, and serves on several local and international editorial boards. He delivered the Alan Paton lecture in March 2013 at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal. He was a Visiting Professor at Wayne State University in 1997 and at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in 2007, and in 2012 he was an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was a co-applicant with Dr. Caroline Davis for a British Academy-sponsored research project: Print, Publishing and Cultural Production in South Africa, 1948-2012. See:

Current Research Interests

Philosophical and historical aspects of librarianship and information science
Manuscript, book, reading, and writing cultures
Member of Editorial Boards


Advisory Board: New Directions in Book History (Palgrave Macmillan): 2014-
Advances on Information Processing and Management (AIPM) Book Series: 2011-
International Journal on Integrated Information Management (IJIIM): 2011-
World Libraries: 2011-
Innovation: Appropriate Librarianship and Information Work for Southern Africa: 2003-
Advisory Board: Society for Authorship, Reading, and Publishing (SHARP): 2018-
Advisory Board: South African Journal of Libraries and Information Science (SAJLIS): 2018-

Information Development: 2010-2014 ; Columnist: 2012-2014
New Contree - Reviews Editor: 2010-2014
Journal of Education for Library and Information Science: 2007-2009.
African Identities: 2003-2006.
The Library Quarterly: 2002-2003.
Mousaion: 2003-2013.
Aslib Proceedings: 2010-2013.
Quarterly Bulletin of the National Library of South Africa: 2007-

Membership of National and International Bodies

Chairperson, National Council of Library and Information Services, NCLIS: 2012-13.
Vice–Chairperson, IFLA/FAIFE: 2009-2011.
Member of LIASA (Library and Information Association of South Africa).
Member of SHARP (Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing): 2009-


  • –present
    Head of Department and Professor of Information Science, University of Pretoria

Grants and Contracts

  • 2019
    Head of Department and Professor of Information Science
    Funding Source:
    National Research Foundation