International Association of Scientific and Technological University Libraries

IATUL News Alerts

Archive February 2015

IATUL 2015 - Register now!

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 5:32:57 p.m.

Registration is now open for the 36th IATUL conference in Hannover, Germany from 5 - 9 July 2015.

The theme of the conference is "Strategic Partnerships for Access and Discovery"

Travel Grants are available for first-time attendees -see the website for further details. 

Thousands of early English books released online to public by Bodleian Libraries and partners

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 5:21:11 p.m.

more than 25.000 early English texts from 1473-1700 have been released online to members of the public as part of a collaborative initiative led by the University of Oxford's Bodleian Libraries and the University of Michigan Library. From Shakespeare and Milton to little-known books about witchcraft, cookery and sword fighting, this rich data set comprises fully-searchable text files that can be read online or downloaded in a variety of formats.

This corpus off electronic texts has been created and released by the Early English Books Online Text Creation Partnership (EEBO TCP), an international collaboration among universities, funders and ProQuest, an information company central to global research. Previously, the texts were only available to users at academic libraries involved in the partnership but the data was released into the public domain in 1 January 2015.

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Using Design Thinking in Higher Education

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 5:04:19 p.m.

Design thinking focuses on users and their needs, encourages brainstorming and prototyping and rewards out-of-the-box thinking and takes "wild ideas" and transforms them into real-world solutions.

Albert Einstein famously said, "No problem can be solved by the same kind of thinking that created it." So, assuming we agree, what exactly are our alternatives? how can we go beyond our standard approach to problems in higher education and entertain new possibilities? One promising alternative is to engage in design thinking.

Design thinking offers a creative yet structured approach for addressing large-scale challenges. In September 2014, we conducted an EDUCAUSE webinar, Design Thinking: Education Edition and offered examples from out Breakthrough Models Incubator (BMI).

Here we offer a summary of that webinar, discussing design thinking principles and process, describing real-world examples of design thinking in action and offering possibilities for how you might introduce the approach into your own organisation.

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Top 10 IT Issues, 2015: Inflection Point

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 4:38:12 p.m.

Change continues to characterise the EDUCAUSE Top 10 IT Issues in 2015. The pace of change seems not to be slowing but, rather, increasing and is happening on many fronts. There is reason to believe that higher education information technology has reached an inflection point - the point at which the trends that have dominated thought leadership and have motivated early adopters are now cascading into the mainstream. This inflection point is the biggest of the three themes of change characterising the 2015 EDUCAUSE Top 10 IT Issues. A second dimension of change is the shifting focus of IT leaders and professionals from technical problems to business problems, along with ensuing interdependence between the IT organisation and business units. Underlying all this strategic change, the day-to-day work of the IT organisation goes on. but change dominates even the day-to-day, where challenges are in some ways more complex than ever. this "new normal" is the third theme of change.

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The Centre of excellence model for information services

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 4:07:14 p.m.

In 2013 , The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded a group of librarians from ARL's Research Library Leadership Fellows programme a planning grant to examine the centre of excellence (CoE) model for information services. used in a variety of industries, CoEs are designed to attract the most talented researchers in a particular field, enhance collaboration and improve access to the resources needed for their research. The planning grant was awarded to determine whether the CoE model could serve as a means to provide the new services required for the effective use of digital information.

This report describes the team's approach to examining the feasibility of CoEs in the library setting. the team conducted preliminary investigations of more that 100 centres, which they narrowed to 35 for in-depth research. Interviews were conducted with staff at 19 centres and 7 funding their conclusion, the team advises developing "networks of expertise" or "expert networks" instead of CoEs and provides a series of recommendations for building such networks.

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STM Consultation on Article Sharing

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 3:55:08 p.m.

Research is inherently collaborative with the sharing of information and expertise essential to advance our collective understanding and knowledge. STM ( global trade association for academic and professional publishers) would like to make sharing simple and seamless for academic researchers, enhancing scholarly collaboration, while being consistent with access and usage rights associated with journal articles.

To gain a better understanding of the current landscape of article sharing through scholarly collaboration networks and sites, STM is undertaking an open consultation across the scholarly community. The aims of this consultation are to facilitate discussion by all stakeholders, to establish a core set of principles that maximize this experience for all. Our goal is that publishers and scholarly collaboration networks work together to facilitate sharing which benefits researchers, institutions, and society as a whole.

To initiate the consultation, STM has drafted a set of ‘Voluntary principles for article sharing on scholarly collaboration networks’.  Stakeholders are invited to provide feedback and share their views. Suggested questions for submissions are outlined in the section below. Organisations and individuals are also invited to formally express support for these principles.

We envision that this is the first step in an ongoing collaborative process, and invite a wider representation of the scholarly community to help identify and action future steps. 


Report of the Association of Research Libraries Strategic Thinking and Design Initiative

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 3:50:55 p.m.

This report documents the Strategic Thinking and Design work in which the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) engaged from the fall of 2013 through the spring of 2014. Fueled by the deep desire of the ARL membership to rise up to the challenges facing higher education in the 21st century, and grants from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Association engaged in an unprecedented project to reimagine the future of the research library and reshape its organization to help bring that future into being.

This process was unprecedented in two ways: it neither listed the challenges that research libraries face and then tried to meliorate them one by one nor did it seek a silver-bullet technological solution to move the community forward. Instead, the process—which engaged more than 360 people drawn from throughout the library community, both within ARL and beyond, and from the academic, funding, and association communities—used a technique called “worldbuilding,” coupled with deep research into the strategic planning in which higher education institutions have already invested heavily, to fashion a “System of Action” for ARL to achieve its desired future. The ARL membership will again examine that work and then consider it for adoption at the October 2014 Membership Meeting in Washington, DC. Some initial work toward implementation has already begun, and the Association plans to assess, consider, re-evaluate, and revise its actions on an on going basis as it works to support this key part of the world’s higher education infrastructure.

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Purdue Wins Excellence in Academic Libraries Award 2015

Wednesday, 25 February 2015 3:32:15 p.m.

Purdue University Libraries has been awarded the 2015 Excellence in Academic Libraries Award in the university category by the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). Purdue is one of three academic libraries—a community college, college, and university library—being recognized by ACRL this year for “programs that deliver exemplary services and resources to further the educational mission of the institution.”

Purdue is being honored for its many “outstanding initiatives,” including information literacy, library spaces, course redesign with faculty, research data services, and research travel grants for faculty. Steven Bell, chair of the 2015 Excellence in Academic Libraries Committee, said, “Purdue University Libraries succeeds by being experimental, taking risks, innovating, and leveraging collaboration with their faculty, graduate, and undergraduate students to push the boundaries of what research university libraries can accomplish for their community, locally and globally.”

The other 2015 Excellence in Academic Libraries Award winners are Santa Fe College’s Lawrence W. Tyree Library in Gainesville, Florida, in the community college category and Amherst College’s Frost Library in Amherst, Massachusetts, in the college category.

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