Conference Program

Enteprise Search & Discovery 2021 offers attendees three days of practical advice, thought leadership, and interaction with colleagues and peers. Discover how to design, build, and manage better search and discovery to help extract critical knowledge and business value from your organizational data. Now in its 18th year, Enterprise Search & Discovery is the only conference dedicated to exploring this critical business and technical challenge and opportunity. Join us as we explore how to provide transformative enterprise search and information discovery across your organization.


Monday, Nov 15

Preconference Workshops


Preconference Workshops

09:00 AM2021-11-152021-11-15

Monday, November 15: 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Enterprise Search & Discovery 2021 is a part of a unique program of four co-located conferences this November — Enterprise Search & Discovery,KMWorld,Taxonomy Boot Camp, andText Analytics Forum. Please take an opportunity to explore these events and their content, then choose a Platinum Pass to gain full access to these distinct, but synergistic, conferences.

Only interested in adding a workshop? We also offer an Enterprise Search & Discovery Plus Workshops pass.

Check back soon for workshop details.

Tuesday, Nov 16

Opening Keynotes



08:30 AM2021-11-162021-11-16

Tuesday, November 16: 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Check back soon for keynote details.

Tuesday, Nov 16



Semantic Search at PayPal

11:00 AM2021-11-162021-11-16

Tuesday, November 16: 11:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Semantic search is one component that PayPal's content architecture team, as part of its transformation effort, examined to reach its goal of developing reusable, componentized content to meet the needs of e-payment customers and merchants, as well as a unique user group of global customer service agents. Come hear what the team has learned about realizing semantic search and their future plans regarding knowledge graphs and ontologies.


, Taxonomist, PayPal

, Manager, PayPal

, Content Engineer, PayPal

, Information Architect, PayPal


Modernizing Search for Multi-Cloud World Using Applied AI

11:45 AM2021-11-162021-11-16

Tuesday, November 16: 11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

As more companies adopt a multi-cloud and hybrid IT approach for meeting their customer demands, it’s clear that the traditional approach to enterprise search is no longer suitable for today’s business needs. The time has come to modernize your enterprise search systems. This does not mean you have to rip and replace your existing systems. Instead, Meerasahib suggests thinking about an alternative approach that is cost-effective and transformative at the same time. At Raytion, innovation in search and discovery is an ongoing endeavor. Learn about some recent projects where customers profit from the recent advances in cloud search.


, Global CTO - Data Analytics, AI, ML & IoT Solutions, Micro Focus Inc

, Search Manager, Raytion GmbH


Leveraging the New Normal to Drive Adoption of Enterprise Search

01:45 PM2021-11-162021-11-16

Tuesday, November 16: 1:45 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.

When the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) was just starting to roll out a new enterprise knowledge management function, enterprise search was part of the plan, but RWJF expected to approach it gradually. Then COVID hit, and everything changed as remote working became the norm. RWJF capitalized on this through a rapid-cycle user research process and enterprise search prototype that garnered broad organizational awareness and support. RWJF is now firmly on the path to implementing an enterprise search experience that combines enhanced use of available in-house technology capability with targeted new supporting roles to help it continually identify and elevate the kinds of information RWJF staff most want and need. Learn how RWJF has been able to leverage the “new normal” to drive dialogue around the importance of effective internal search capability, as well as the kinds of staff engagement, cross-departmental collaboration, and leadership support necessary for enterprise search to succeed in the long-term.


, Knowledge Management Officer, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

, Co-Founder, Ideal State


Where We Stand With Open Source and Enterprise Search

02:45 PM2021-11-162021-11-16

Tuesday, November 16: 2:45 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

The open source movement has taken over many aspects of enterprise information systems, including enterprise search. Open source experts Ulmer and Pugh look at what the dominance of open source means for search. They first remind us of what open source is and is not, then move on to an overview of the open source ecosystem for search and its recent evolution, in particular with Elasticsearch and other open source systems, notably Datafari. They conclude with their outlook on the future of open source search.


, CEO, France Labs

, CEO & Co-founder, OpenSource Connections


Microsoft Search A–Z

04:15 PM2021-11-162021-11-16

Tuesday, November 16: 4:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

What should we do now that “classic" search in SharePoint Online is legacy and out-of-the-box Microsoft Search cannot be customized? Molnar notes that PnP Modern Search is the solution that more and more organizations choose in Office 365. It is modern and customizable. You can build your own search center, or you can add it to your modern pages and provide search-driven content there. Also, you can create custom search-driven applications. She demonstrates the features of PnP Modern Search library and provides a trade-off analysis of when it is useful to use it in Office 365.


, Managing Consultant, CEO, Search Explained

Wednesday, Nov 17




08:30 AM2021-11-172021-11-17

Wednesday, November 17: 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Check back soon for keynote details.

Wednesday, Nov 17



Implementing Search in the New World of AI & ML

10:45 AM2021-11-172021-11-17

Wednesday, November 17: 10:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and knowledge graphs are changing how search is implemented and delivered. Do you understand how these advanced technologies are changing search and what you need to do to keep pace? Hilger explains how these technologies impact search and shows examples from work done with clients around the world. Learn what these technologies really do without the hype and take back to the office some practical ideas for enhancing search using these powerful new tools.


, COO, Enterprise Knowledge LLC


What I Mean Is … Intelligent Search Inside the Enterprise

11:45 AM2021-11-172021-11-17

Wednesday, November 17: 11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Google's game-changing introduction of human input into relevance ranking plus the collection of massive amounts of user search data introduced a new landscape with user behavior as a ranking factor. Today, query terms do not have to appear in documents’ text because search engines use AI to “understand” the query. AI-mediated information retrieval is an experience calculated by algorithms not informed by human understanding. Sweeny explores how we can do a better job of matching the external enterprise search user experience to the one inside the enterprise firewall. A separate talk by Mindbreeze concentrates on the value of advanced insight engines to provide intelligent answers and holistic views to a variety of queries in different industries with diverse business goals.


, Principal Consultant, Daedalus Information Systems

, COO and VP, Customer Success, Mindbreeze


Site Search: Would You Like Ads With That?

01:30 PM2021-11-172021-11-17

Wednesday, November 17: 1:30 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Retailers started to develop retail media programs. Ecommerce site search is one intersection where marketing asks, retail media initiatives, and the customer intersect. The talk explores what aspects to consider to successfully balance relevancy and what can be the right approach to set up search, including merchant ads and interaction with stakeholders involved.


, Head of Site Search, Home Depot


Understanding Your Users Through UX Design

02:30 PM2021-11-172021-11-17

Wednesday, November 17: 2:30 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.

White walks participants through the UX design process and provides examples of UX approaches and activities that will help you better understand your users. Learn how to use an iterative approach to build content repositories, databases, and enterprise search tools that will stand the test of time. She warns not to overlook the immense value of UX design when stakeholders are included. UX design also encourages greater employee engagement. The iterative approach provides opportunities to identify and avoid many of the risks associated with building KM solutions and will save businesses money and time in the long run.


, Senior KM Analyst, Enterprise Knowledge


Trends in Enterprise Search

04:00 PM2021-11-172021-11-17

Wednesday, November 17: 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

To paraphrase Mark Twain, the reports of the death of enterprise search have been greatly exaggerated. Yet expectations around the power and proficiencies of enterprise search remain high, even when promised benefits do not always materialize. AI-based technologies, analytics requirements, visual search, internal content bias, indexing capabilities, conversational search, and more are open for discussion. This panel examines the current trends in enterprise search, putting them in perspective and speculating on what’s down the road.


, Editor-in-Chief, Online Searcher Magazine, USA

Thursday, Nov 18




08:30 AM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Check back soon for keynote details.

Thursday, Nov 18



The Tale of Two Searches: Multiple Enterprise Search Solutions

10:15 AM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 10:15 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Come with Majer as he leads you through what it’s like to have more than one enterprise search solution in a company. Looking at what Merck has done, he points out the pros and cons of such an approach. Is having more than one approach to search, but each with a different focus better, or should we always push to unify it into one big search? Let’s spark a discussion based on the Merck experience and what the company has learned over the years.


, Search Engineer, Merck & Co.


Enterprise Search in Slack

11:15 AM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 11:15 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

As Slack usurps email and word processing suites as the operating system for work, it needs more powerful search tools that can power internal self-serve support. So many questions are asked and answers are given in Slack, that it has become a de-facto knowledgebase. Unfortunately, it is very poorly designed for this use case. Without proper enterprise search functionality, Slack channels become simply noisy and confusing.


, Co-Founder and CEO, Obie


Keynote Luncheon

12:00 PM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Check back soon for keynote details.


Mastering Content Aggregation

01:00 PM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 1:00 p.m. - 1:45 p.m.

Enterprise search solutions are built on the assumption that content repositories are on the corporate intranet, so that content aggregation and integration are not problems that the search solution need address beyond being pointed at the repositories on the enterprise network. But for some use cases—competitive intelligence and market research come to mind—much valuable content is from third-party sources. The process of aggregation from multiple external parties is operationally challenging to manage due to a myriad of publishing systems, document formats, metadata conventions, publishing schedules, and technical access gateways, not to mention complex and widely varying document access rights. Seuss reviews the dizzying array of issues, as well as the strategies for addressing them.


, CEO, Northern Light


Beyond Buzzwords Panel

02:00 PM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 2:00 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.

Despite what press releases and marketing materials say, not everything is “game-changing” or “the best thing since sliced bread.” Our panel of practitioners report from the trenches on what really works and what doesn’t. They give their tips, based on long experience, about how to get beyond the buzzwords to evaluate new vendors, upgrades, and search platforms.


, Editor-in-Chief, Online Searcher Magazine, USA


Measuring Diversity of Search Results

03:00 PM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 3:00 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Traditionally search has been all about "How do I find the one (or five) documents that answer my question?" However, what about when I want to encourage serendipity and discovery (common in research use cases)? In those cases, I care about increasing the diversity of my search results, while still ensuring the precision and relevance are decent. Pugh provides a simple formula for measuring your search results diversity and offers some concrete tips on surfacing diverse search results.


, CEO & Co-founder, OpenSource Connections

Thursday, Nov 18



Closing Keynote

04:00 PM2021-11-182021-11-18

Thursday, November 18: 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Check back soon for keynote details.

Co-Located With