Skip to main content

This Year’s Theme: Information Strategy & Structure
In today’s world, organizations are required to rethink how to architect and manage information to maintain a competitive and organizational edge. Many are embracing strategies that are more flexible, moving away from isolated systems and departmental silos. These organizations recognize the need for information to be structured so that it is consistent, transparent, findable and understandable.

But, the need for information strategy and structure extends beyond the enterprise. Whether information is architected to inform algorithms, to bring awareness to important societal challenges, or to clearly communicate available resources to help those in need; information strategy and structure plays an important role in our everyday lives.

The Seattle Event
This year’s event will combine in-person presentations from local and visiting IA professionals and live streams of talks from other WIAD locations around the world. And, of course, we'll close the day with a happy hour so you can mix and mingle with these and other like-minded IA professionals and enthusiasts.

About World IA Day
World Information Architecture Day is a global one-day conference hosted annually by the Information Architecture Institute and held simultaneously in selected cities all over the world. Each year, a new theme is selected, new cities are added, and our community continues to grow as more people from all across the world join this truly global celebration of Information Architecture.

About IAI
The Information Architecture Institute is a non-profit organization empowering local communities to shape the global practice of information architecture by providing places to share and opportunities to learn.

Event date
Sat, 18 February 2017

Venue, parking and transit

General Assembly Seattle

1218 Third Avenue, 3rd Floor, Seattle WA 98101

Here's a map to the Seattle Tower.

MetroSound Transit and Light Rail will get you to within walking distance of General Assembly. (The Union Street light rail station is right across the street from Seattle Tower.)

If you're driving, check out Parkopedia.


9:30 PM - 12:00 PM

Informal Morning Session

We'll be streaming talks from other WIAD locations all morning. Drop in, if you're so inclined, and have a cup of coffee with us.

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

Enterprise Perspectives on Information Architecture

Presented by Leslie Owens

In her role as Executive Director of MIT CISR (Center for Information Systems Research), Leslie works closely with CIOs at large global companies. In this keynote, she will examine the priorities and choices that senior leaders face today, and how those decisions may influence a firm’s information strategy.  Drawing on insights from research at MIT CISR, Leslie will explore the tension that information architects experience as they try to structure information within a firm that is undergoing digital transformation.

1:35 PM - 2:05 PM

Personalized Help: Using IA to Create a Unique Support Experience

Presented by Nick Sweers

Nick will detail how his team, together with Expedia's Global Learning Organization (GLO), re-engineered a bland, boring help site into a state-of-the-art support experience for Expedia's hotel partners worldwide.

2:05 PM - 2:20 PM


2:20 PM - 2:50 PM

Disorder to clarity: storytelling + marketing campaigns

Presented by Catherine Ho

This talk takes a close look at digital design for marketing campaigns and the communication that takes place between functional partners.  Catherine will provide a walkthrough of the experience design process and artifacts that helped REI gain cross-functional alignment in an e-commerce environment.

2:55 PM - 3:25 PM


Presented by Andrew Morton

Andrew is a CMS developer at Forum One, where he helps large non-profits and organizations achieve success in their missions through digital platforms.  He runs the Seattle Drupal User Group (SeaDUG) and bi-weekly office hours for budding web devs.

Andrew will share his experience developing CMS solutions designed to support robust information architecture and allow for easy content editing, organizing, and display.

3:30 PM - 4:00 PM

Ontology and IA

Presented by Michael Uschold

Michael has over twenty-five years’ experience in developing and transitioning semantic technology from academia to industry. He pioneered the field of ontology engineering, co-authoring the first paper and giving the first tutorial on the topic in 1995 in the UK.  

Michael will discuss the role that ontologies can play in information rich IA projects. This talk will start with an overview of ontologies and business benefits they can bring to IA projects. Using case studies he’ll cover the pros and cons of using an ontology instead of a taxonomy and then describe how ontologies can fit into an IA project.

4:00 PM - 4:30 PM

All Speakers - Q&A Time

4:30 PM - 5:30 PM

Happy Hour