Our podcasts consist of recorded interviews with industry thought leaders and up-and-comers—as well as recorded audio from meetings or presentations with OCLC Research staff.

Each file is available in several ways: click the link for direct streaming and immediate listening online or right-click to save the file to and view it from your own drive. This content is also available through our RSS feed and are also available in the iTunes Store. New files will be updated regularly, so be sure to check back often.

What's keeping you awake at night? That's the question we've been asking as we travel around and find ourselves in places with people who are thinking ahead, worrying about big issues or imagining the next big thing. We've recorded these impromptu interviews and posted them here to share with you.

Date Recorded Speaker Title
9 January 2012

David Lankes,
Professor and Dean Scholar for the New Librarianship
Director of Library Science at the Syracuse University's School of Information Studies
Director of the Information Institute of Syracuse

Interviewed by Roy Tennant,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

The Power of Raised Expectations (.mp3: 10.6MB/21min.)

In this wide-ranging and optimistic interview, Professor Lankes challenges us to raise our expectations—of ourselves, our colleagues, and of our institutions—to better serve our communities. He describes how fostering an environment where risk-taking and expectation of occasional failure (as opposed to mistakes) can better enable us to meet our challenges. He urges us to engage in lively conversations with the communities we serve and imagine what we could be instead of what we were. And of course he says this in a much more engaging, interesting, and eloquent way than this pitiful summary can depict. Listen and be inspired.

20 September 2010

Dorothea Salo,
Research Services Librarian and Adjunct Faculty
University of Wisconsin, Madison

Interviewed by Roy Tennant,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

How Libraries License e-Content (.mp3: 15.9MB/11min.)

In this podcast, noted library author and "provocateur" Dorothea Salo discusses what keeps her awake at night: how libraries license e-content. She asserts that the current system is broken and must change. She further urges collective action by libraries and library consortia to change how licensing currently happens. Listen to the interview to hear exactly what she would like to see change, and when.

The blog post to which Dorothea refers can be found at:

29 April 2009

John Price Wilkin,
Executive Director, Hathi Trust
AUL for Library Information Technology, University of Michigan

Interviewed by Roy Tennant,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

The Hathi Trust and "The Silence of the Archive" (.mp3: 14.6MB/19min.)

In this interview, the Executive Director of the Hathi Trust, a shared digital repository of vast amounts of digital content, discusses this invigorating collaborative development. John talks about recent accomplishments and future plans for that cooperative effort, and makes an amazing prediction that there will be 15 million volumes online at the Hathi Trust in 3-4 years. John also talks about "the silence of the archive" and the issues that poses for those interested in preserving our cultural heritage.

04 December 2008

Joe Janes,
Associate Professor, Information School,
University of Washington

Interviewed by Roy Tennant,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

Professional Pivot Point: Regaining Relevance in a Rapidly Changing World (.mp3: 22.8MB/28min.)

In this interview, Joe Janes asserts that we are at a professional crossroads. The future will either leave libraries in the dust, or we can seize opportunities to demonstrate our value and solidify our place in modern society. For example, Joe says, "libraries have to figure out how to be relevant to people who spend half their life on a device they hold in their hands." In typical Joe Janes style, there isn't a single boring minute in this look at challenges we face in libraries, museums and archives and what we should be doing to regain our relevance for the communities we serve.

06 November 2008

Grace Agnew,
Associate University Librarian for Digital Library Systems,
Rutgers University

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

Beyond Brilliant Silos: Video Content, Data Sets, Open Source and Rights Management (.mp3: 6.9MB/20min.)

Tune in to find out why video content, data sets and open source are keeping Grace Agnew awake at night, plus why she believes you can never get away from rights management.

04 September 2008

Robert Crawford,
Poet and Professor of Modern Scottish Literature,
University of St Andrews

Interviewed by John MacColl,
RLG Partnership European Director,
OCLC Research

Research Libraries: the Viewpoint of a Scholar Poet (.mp3: 19.2MB/21min.)

In this interview, Robert Crawford talks about the scholarship which supported "Scotland's Books," a recently published book about the history of Scottish literature, and a forthcoming biography of Robert Burns. He describes the importance of digitized archives as well as the pleasures of working with paper in archives such as that at St Andrews, with hundreds of years' worth of undigitized material still to be charted. He also discusses the inspiration his poetry derives from new technologies, which is nonetheless inflected by anxiety about the loss of democratic access to the works which form a common heritage, and the uncritical adoption of the virtual world in preference to a natural world which needs our urgent attention. He finishes by reading his recent poem "The Digital Library, St Andrews."

29 August 2008

Richard Ovenden,
Associate Director and Keeper of Special Collections,
Bodleian Library, Oxford

Interviewed by John MacColl,
RLG Partnership European Director,
OCLC Research

Special Collections and Beyond—Conservation, Project Funding and Digital Surrogates (.mp3: 10.3MB/11min.)

In this interview, Richard Ovenden discusses the three main areas of his responsibility, arguing for a need to return to more active conservation, describing problems in digital library development caused by over-reliance on project funding, and pointing to the dangers of over-use of digital surrogates. He also considers an interesting and unforeseen consequence of being a Google Library Partner.

21 August 2008

Alice Schreyer,
Assistant Director for Special Collections & Preservation;
Director, Special Collections Research Center,
University of Chicago Library

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

Picking Up the Pace: Considering the Implications of Accelerated Archival Processing (.mp3: 13MB/38min.)

What happens when you are successful at increasing processing throughput? What is the impact on researchers, staff and space? Tune in and find out!

30 July 2008

Jackie Dooley,
Head of Special Collections and Archives,
University of California, Irvine;
Consulting Archivist,
OCLC Research

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

Electronic Records: The Archivist's 600-Pound Gorilla (.mp3: 13.4MB/38min.)

Digital does not mean preserved. Methods for managing and preserving born-digital electronic records are complicated and unresolved. Archivists must actively educate themselves about the issues. Learn more about the challenges of digital preservation and some current efforts that illustrate progress.

1 July 2008

Ken Hamma,
Executive Director for Digital Policy and Initiatives
J. Paul Getty Trust

Interviewed by Günter Waibel,
Program Officer,
OCLC Research

The Cost of Owning Technology (.mp3: 9.17MB/20min.)

Owning technology requires significant ongoing investment, but there are various options—including development of open source and Web-based systems—that can bring down costs and lead to a more collaborative future.

8 May 2008

MacKenzie Smith,
Associate Director for Technology,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer
OCLC Research

Strategically Embracing Technology to Improve Libraries (.mp3: 7.3MB/21min.)

What are the risks of missing out on new services, such as personal information management, vertical search, data curation for faculty research collections, and digital preservation? How can we shift resources to develop and implement new services? How do we prioritize the old versus the new? Developing evidence to support decisions is an important part of the puzzle. Clearly, shifts need to happen both with in library schools and also within current library leadership. A discussion of forward-looking MIT projects—such as DSpace, SIMILE (which has gathered wide adoption outside of libraries) and Facade (digital preservation of three dimensional, born digital objects)—and developing systems to deal with policy-driven data curation, is also included.

11 April 2008

Jenn Riley,
Metadata Librarian,
Digital Library Program,
Indiana University, an RLG partner institution

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer
OCLC Research

Why Shouldn't the Library Catalog be an Encyclopedia? (.mp3: 3.2MB/9min.)

Traditionally, the library catalog has not been an encyclopedia, but moving forward it could act more like one, at least in the way that it ties in with other systems to provide seamless access between users.

8 April 2008

Dennis Meissner,
Head of Collections Management,
Minnesota Historical Society, an RLG partner institution

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

Access Improvement (.mp3: 6MB/15:07min.)

How to invest resources wisely to best serve audience needs, and the importance of self-study.

25 January 2008

RLG Programs partner Jeremy Frumkin,
Head of Emerging Technologies,
Oregon State University

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

Moving Toward the Network Level (.mp3: 9.6MB/28min.)

What does "moving toward the network level" really mean, who is doing it and how will it impact libraries?

13 January 2008

RLG Programs partner Mark Dimunation
Chief of the Rare Book and Special Collections Division,
Library of Congress

Interviewed by Merrilee Proffitt,
Senior Program Officer,
OCLC Research

The Value of Physical Artifacts in an Increasingly Virtual World (.mp3: 7.4MB/22min.)

Special collections need to keep collecting and building collections of real things, but also need to be smart and be part of the digital conversation. How do libraries create a digital environment where researchers can derive the evidence they need to do their work?