Several years ago, Pat Graham and David Stewart initiated a conversation about developing a metric for success among ATLA librarians. For a long while I have thought they were right in asking whether we were actually measuring what we should be. Chip Conley asks the same question:
In conversations with faculty, librarians, students and administrators in recent months, two common themes have emerged. First, exciting new technological tools are emerging that hold great promise for enhancing research and learning at Boston University. Second, the task of integrating these new technologies into a seamless, easy-to-use research and learning environment is daunting.
Recent work on the Libraries’ web sites, a small piece of the overall effort, reveals that in many ways we need to leap over system tools that are mere content management systems to develop and utilize a content integration system. The libraries manage and disseminate vast amounts of information from many sources. We want the user to experience the information rich environment we provide as a place that is not confusing, that encourages engagement with the information and that supports collaboration, innovation, learning, and research. Accomplishing this in a scalable way is a significant challenge.
In a variety of conversations, the need for a broadly conceived, more integrated environment capable of supporting research and learning emerged. That environment must both reduce barriers to participation, provide sufficient added value as incentive to faculty and students to participate, and integrate with the University’s administrative and business processes to merit University support.
The environment should be both outward and inward facing. External stakeholders and constituencies should easily be able to not only discover summary information about BU research and learning opportunities, but be able to drill down to discover details and relationships that might allow collaboration, enrichment, and a more sophisticated description and analysis of the intellectual and creative work done at BU.
The environment should feed University administrative business processes, and enhance learning and assessment processes, facilitate collaboration, strengthen the intellectual rigor of our research and facilitate innovation. It should recognize and integrate the many sources of information and data that exist in University, making them easily discoverable.
Though we speak of it as a single environment, we didn’t envisage this as a single software application, but rather, implementation and integration of select applications that reflect and facilitate best practices in scholarly collaboration, learning, research and writing. When properly integrated, these applications will allow the end-user to engage in her/his intellectual and creative activities to seamlessly draw on the University’s resources to support that work.
Emerging from the conversation we identified four key capacities that the environment should facilitate:
- Intellectual networking;
- Information discovery and analysis;
- Learning and assessment;
- Research and writing
The Purpose of Copyright by Lydia Pallas Loren
Lydia Pallas Loren is Associate Professor of Law, Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College.
The core purpose of copyright law is not difficult to find; it is stated expressly in the Constitution. Article I, section 8, clause 8 of the United States Constitution provides that Congress shall have the power: “to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”
The idea of developing model language for author rights in library content licenses emerged at a meeting on policy development for open-access repositories hosted by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) in January 2009…. An ad hoc working group was self-organized in late 2009 to explore the feasibility of drafting standard language for author rights that could be included in library content licenses.
Ivy Anderson. “Model Language for Author Rights in Library Content Licenses.” Research Library Issues: A Bimonthly Report from ARL, CNI, and SPARC, no. 269 (April 2010): 11–13. http://www.arl.org/resources/ pubs/rli/archive/rli269.shtml.
American Libraries published an interview with Thomas Frey on the Future of Libraries…
All around me I see people transitioning from consumers to producers. These “tools of production” that Chris Anderson talked about are now easily accessible. For libraries, the patrons are shifting from information consumers to information producers. Readers are becoming writers, audio listeners are becoming audio composers, and video watchers are becoming video producers.
Libraries need to begin offering access to these “tools of production.” They may range from podcast studios, to audio capture and audio editing, to video capture and video editing, to virtual world stations, to blogger stations, to mashup consoles, to graphic editing stations. The possibilities are only limited by our own imaginations.
JISC/OCLC report | Digital information seekers: How academic libraries can support the use of digital resources
Users’ perceptions of library services have been slow to change and many people still tend to think of libraries as collections of books rather than providers of electronic resources. Academic libraries serve many constituencies with different needs and behaviours, such as academic discipline, research experience, demographic category and information-seeking context. Libraries need to understand those needs and adapt to meet them in a flexible manner.
- Library systems must do better at providing seamless access to resources such as full-text e-journals, online foreign-language materials, e-books, a variety of electronic publishers’ platforms and virtual reference desk services
- Library catalogues need to include more direct links to resources and more online content
- Libraries should provide moredigital resources of all kinds, from e-journals to curated data sets, as well as emerging services such as virtual research environments (VREs), open source materials, non-text-based and multimedia objects, and blogs
- Library systems must be prepared for changing user behaviours, which include advanced search options, demands for immediate access and quick perusal of resources
- Library systems need to look and function more like search engines (eg Google) and popular web services (eg Amazon.com), as these are familiar to users who are comfortable and confident in using them
- High-quality metadata is becoming more important for discovery of appropriate resources
- Librarians must now consider the implications of power browsing behaviours
- Students need more guidance and clarity on how to find content and how to assess its worth as well as its relevance
- The library must advertise its brand and its resources better to academics, researchers and students, demonstrating its value clearly and unambiguously
Just noticed Dorothea Salo’s article:
Salo, Dorothea. “Who owns our work?” Serials 23:3, 2010.
Much turmoil in the scholarly-communication ecosystem appears to revolve around simple ownership of intellectual property. Unpacking that notion, however, produces a fascinating tangle of stakeholders, desires, products and struggles. Some products of the research process, especially novel ones, are difficult to fit into legal concepts of ownership. As collaborative research burgeons, traditional ownership and authorship criteria are stretched to their limits and beyond, with many contributors still feeling short of due credit. The desire for access and impact brings institutions and grant funders into the formerly exclusive relationship between authors and publishers. Librarians, stripped of first-sale rights by electronic licensing, wonder about both access and long-term preservation. Emerging solutions to many of these difficulties threaten to cut publishers out of the picture altogether, perhaps a welcome change to those stakeholders who find publishers’ behavior to block progress.
The recent fund raising campaign launched by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) prompted several responses including Lawrence Lessig’s response in the Huffington Post in which he defends Creative Commons, Creative Commons own response, and the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s response.
Lessig invites ASCAP President Paul Williams to a debate to address the issues:
This isn’t the first time that ASCAP has misrepresented the objectives of our organization. But could we make it the last? We have no objection to collecting societies: They too were an innovative and voluntary solution (in America at least) to a challenging copyright problem created by new technologies. And I at least am confident that collecting societies will be a part of the copyright landscape forever.
So here’s my challenge, ASCAP President Paul Williams: Let’s address our differences the way decent souls do. In a debate. I’m a big fan of yours, and If you’ll grant me the permission, I’d even be willing to sing one of your songs (or not) if you’ll accept my challenge of a debate. We could ask the New York Public Library to host the event. I am willing to do whatever I can to accommodate your schedule.
Let’s meet and address these perceived differences with honesty and good faith. No doubt we have disagreements (for instance, I love rainy days, and Mondays rarely get me down). But on the issues that your organization and mine care about, there should be no difference worthy of an attack.
One of the significant issues raised at the SPARC Forum in June was open access text books. Richard Baraniuk talks about one of the open access publishing platforms, Connexions, developed at Rice University.
Richard Baraniuk: Goodbye, textbooks; hello, open-source learning
The scale model that built companies like Macmillan, Inc. is irreparably dead to anyone thinking about the future of publishing. The only way out – and it’s not an easy suggestion – is to recognize that those functions that used to provide scale benefits are no longer doing so and need to be carved out….
The only way out – and it’s not an easy suggestion – is to recognize that those functions that used to provide scale benefits are no longer doing so and need to be carved out.