2008

RLG Programs 2008 Annual Partners Meeting
Supporting New Modes of Scholarship
Breakout Session Recap Sent to Participants

Day One
Monday, June 2, 2008

When asked about their interest in the theme, Supporting New Modes of Scholarship, participants mentioned the following in order of frequency (there was much overlap and very unscientific accounting; this doesn't include sweeping inclusions (e.g., "I agree with everything she said."), and we suspect the group dynamic drove the interests in particular directions).


# of Interested Participants Topic # of Interested Participants Topic
6
Faculty partnerships
2
Library, archive, museum convergence
6
eScience
2
Collaborative space
6
Work practices of faculty and students
2
Access to legacy collections
5
Strategic planning
1
Web archiving
5
Digital repository/Institutional repository
1
Use of digital collections
5
Data curation
1
Use of data in scholarship
4
Scholarly communication
1
Usability
4
eScholarship
1
Scholarly needs regarding secondary literature
3
Preservation
1
Print vs. online use
3
Other media
1
Discipline differences
3
ePublishing
1
Digitization for external audience
2
Reputation measures
1
Coordination to avoid redundant effort
2
Open content mandates
1
Capacity and skills of librarians

The topics that rose to the top of the list were either identified as part of the Research Outputs and Reputation Management Program or were ruled out of scope (either because they were being addressed in another breakout session or because they were local challenges to which the RLG partnership couldn't add much value). We returned to the eScience/data curation topics at the end of the session.

Day Two
Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The agenda led the discussion in different directions, though many of the previously stated interest topics came up. Additionally, some new topics were introduced. They either fit into one of the programs in this theme or were ruled out of scope, either because they didn't fit this theme area (social tagging, curation of new media, and merits of quantity over selected, curated content) or because the RLG partnership was not an appropriate place to address them (faculty consultancy).

We started with a summary of the Library, Archive, Museum Collaboration workshops. The group very much supported having a forum to share outcomes with the larger partnership and to explore ways the ideas could find broader application. Paul Constantine (University of Washington), Kathy Spiess (Smithsonian Institution), Alice Prochaska (Yale University) and Meg Bellinger (Yale University) volunteered to be involved in follow up.

The desire for a single point of access, which came up in the workshops, was echoed in the breakout group. This is being addressed in the New Service Infrastructure group. Sally Kalin (Pennsylvania State University) and Mary Augusta Thomas (Smithsonian Institution) volunteered for this topic. It was noted that the library often is expected to provide a leadership role in LAM collaborations. While one attendee commented that this form of discovery should happen at the network level, another opined that access to the physical materials behind the images will remain an intensely local endeavor. A third counseled that local collections are rarely comprehensive enough to support teaching and research, and need to be combined with resources from elsewhere.

We then had a presentation by John Tuck on Digital Lives (.pdf: 96K/16 pp.), a British Library initiative to work with people on how to organize their personal digital collections. This raised the topic of providing guidance for creators, which we returned to after lunch.

Next we discussed the Scholarly Use of Text Aggregation program. People had widely varying ideas of what this topic could include and many possibilities were discussed and dismissed, either because they were in areas over which we had no control or because others were already addressing them.

One suggestion was for RLG/OCLC to make sure that those who run eText centers and those who support scholars who use digitized texts are kept aware of the resources coming out of Research and OCLC services (like Identities, terminologies, the Virtual International Authorities File or VIAF). RLG Programs was advised to watch, but not to participate in, Project Bamboo (at least until they reach the next proposal phase). Staff will track it via partner participation to see if there's a right way and a right time for RLG to be involved.

After lunch, we had a brief discussion of the Personal Research Collections program. The project to look at reference management tools for sharing and investigating whether recommender services could be derived was of interest. At least four institutions represented use Refworks, Endnotes and Zotero. In the context of sharing bibliographies, it was mentioned that some faculty use LibraryThing to see colleague's collections.

Some wondered whether we're focusing too much on pull technologies and not enough on push technologies. Couldn't we suggest likely resources of interest to faculty if we gathered more information about their interests? The idea of using data (circulation, world cat usage, audience info, and other management intelligence) to contribute to user profiling to push relevant content to users identified a need to communicate work being done in Research and in OCLC services.

The topic of the library's role in helping faculty manage their personal collections was discussed again. It was felt that if we don't help them now, we'll have to make sense of their poorly organized and maintained collections when they retire. Should libraries consult with faculty about best practices in managing personal collections? These were compelling topics for Alice Schreyer (UChicago), Fay Chadwell (OreState), Karen Williams (UMinn), Ka-Neng Au (Rutgers), Allen Jones (New School), and Vicki Coleman (AZState).

And, finally, we had a substantial discussion of the Research Outputs and Reputation Management program. Identity management resources were of great interest and resonated with EAC, VIAF and Identities work, as well as proposed work in this and other RLG programs.

A working group was proposed to write a paper on reputation and expertise. Sheila Cannell (Edinburgh), Ross Coleman (USydney), and Pat Renfro (Columbia) volunteered.

Institutional repository service profiles, which dove-tail with faculty workflow, are needed to motivate contribution to the Institutional Repositories. Meg Bellinger (Yale) Sheila Cannell (Edinburgh), Ross Coleman (USydney and Mary Jo Romaniuk (UAlberta) volunteered.

At the end of the day, the only significant interest topic that had not been discussed was eScience. After a brief discussion, we were reminded that an ARL taskforce on sScience had issued a report with recommendations. They will be following up with some of them (mid-Oct meeting). For most US libraries, that will be the venue with the momentum in this area. RLG should coordinate with them (Wendy Lougee, Neil Rambo) to see if there is something appropriate that the RLG partnership should take on.

The main outcomes then were:

  1. A follow-on forum to the LAM workshops which would extend the benefit and lessons from the individual institution investigations
  2. An initiative that would formulate guidance for those interested in managing personal collections
  3. A working group to write a scoping and opportunity paper on reputation and expertise profiling
  4. A working group to profile a suite of services that could be built around faculty workflow and research output.


For more information

Ricky Erway

Program Officer

ricky_erway@oclc.org