University of Pittsburgh
December 2, 2001

Professor who Helped Establish Information Ethics Course at the University of Pittsburgh to Retire


PITTSBURGH—Stephen Almagno, professor of library and information science in the School of Information Sciences (SIS) at the University of Pittsburgh who helped establish the School's information ethics course in 1990, will retire from the University this month to assume leadership of the worldwide education programs of the Franciscan Order of the Roman Catholic Church. Almagno, a Franciscan friar, will be headquartered in Rome.

Almagno joined the University of Pittsburgh in 1972 as a visiting lecturer and became a

SIS professor in 1980. His major research and teaching have been in the area of historical bibliography, the humanities, and information ethics (IE). With SIS Dean Toni Carbo, he established an IE lecture series in 1989, and together they introduced a course in IE in 1990. Almagno has taught the IE course twice a year since then. He also led the effort to establish an Information Ethics Fund, which supports the Information Ethics Fellowship, a student scholarship program established in 1996, and the Ethics Web site,

Almagno earned the Bachelor of Science degree in philosophy from Immaculate Conception Seminary in 1961, and the Master of Library Science degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1965. The author or editor of 18 books and monographs, Almagno is an internationally recognized scholar. In addition to numerous articles, contributions to books, and book reviews in English, he has translated works from Italian and French to English, and from English to French and Italian. He also is highly regarded as a teacher, advisor, and mentor. Countless students and colleagues have attested to the major impact he has had on their lives, either through his course on information ethics or counsel and advice he has provided.

This fall, the Ethics of Electronic Information in the 21st Century (EEI21) Conference at the University of Memphis was dedicated to Almagno. He was the keynote speaker, delivering an address titled "Information Ethics: the Duty, Privilege, and Challenge of Educating Information Professionals." Additionally, the papers presented at the conference will be published as a Festschrift honoring Almagno upon his retirement. Contributions to the IE Fund are being sought to honor Almagno and to continue his legacy.

"This recognition of Professor Almagno is well-deserved," said Carbo. "I have received a great number of positive comments about Professor Almagno over the years. Many of his former students tell me that he changed their lives through the information ethics course. We are very pleased that he is being honored in this way."