September 30, 2008    |   Vol. 1, No. 5    |   ISSN: 1943-1457
Above the Fold
A weekly newsletter for the changing world of libraries, archives and museums

In this issue:

Innovative Thinking  (External site)

CEO Forum Group   •  Winter 2008

Innovation just wants to be real. Jason Clarke says all this talk about innovation is just that--talk--unless things start changing at the top: "If innovation is just your latest corporate mantra, don't be shocked if your people just add 'innovation' to their language until the fad blows over. Remember they don't listen to what you say, they watch what you do, so if you take genuine steps to encourage innovation, it'll happen. If you reward it, it'll happen faster. If you remove the cultural barriers and crack down on people who kill original thinking, it'll fly."

A refrain that we've heard a lot from research librarians recently is about our culture. Interesting to hear "the problem" described as usually a symptom of old cultural issues. ( Michalko)

How to Save a Billion Dollars  (External site)

Open Forum  •  September 10, 2008

Think before you merge. Read this article before you think about consolidating community resources in the name of synergy. Bigger isn't always better and synergy doesn't always play out.

Some of the errors pointed out here resonate with things that have been said in the research information community. Do we "play semantic games to convince ourselves we have something that matters in a new market?" ( Michalko)

User-Generated Science  (External site)

The Economist  •  September 18, 2008

Science 2.0 is on the rise. Internet-based peer review is much more efficient that the cumbersome conventional scientific publishing process, but scientists are still leery about divulging their research online. Now there's Seed Media Group's Research Blogging, a forum that aims to streamline the process of scientific discourse.

Consider how our desire to capture, preserve and offer up the units of scientific discourse will be challenged by this phenomenon. ( Michalko)

The Tell-All Campus Tour  (External site)

The New York Times  •  September 21, 2008

College search meets social networking. Unigo.com is a an unfettered, grass-roots response to college review publishers like Fiske and Peterson's. It's time to look beyond the established players when we're assisting high schoolers in search of the perfect higher ed experience.

"The pictures of kids on the lawn won't do anymore." Indeed. ( Michalko)

The Secret of Storytelling: Why We Love a Good Yarn  (External site)

Scientific American   •  September 18, 2008

Why do we love stories so much? Our brains are hardwired to respond to narrative tales--to the point that people believe information presented as a story more than it it's told as "straight facts." How can we harness the power of storytelling to effect change?

Having scientists consider the roots of storytelling gave me a different way to think about what we've always taken as true. And every aspiring entrepreneur in an elevator with a venture capitalist has tested. ( Michalko)

OCLC Programs and Research advances exploration, innovation and community building for libraries, archives, and museums.

Above the Fold is a Web-based newsletter published by OCLC Programs and Research. It has been developed to serve a broad international readership from libraries, archives and museums. News items are supplied weekly under contract by Suzanne Douglas, Ibis Communications Inc. Programs and Research items are supplied by staff in RLG Programs and OCLC Research. Please send comments and questions about this or other issues to rlg@oclc.org.
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