Closing the Digital Curation Gap Project

Posted in Digital Curation & Digital Preservation, Grants on November 22nd, 2009

The Institute of Museum and Library Services has awarded $249,623 to the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill School of Information and Library Science for the Closing the Digital Curation Gap project.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

Scientists, researchers, and scholars across the world generate vast amounts of digital data, but the scientific record and the documentary heritage created in digital form are at risk—from technology obsolescence, from the fragility of digital media, and from the lack of baseline practices for managing and preserving digital data. The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) School of Information and Library Science, working with the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and partners in the United Kingdom (U.K.), are collaborating on the Closing the Digital Curation Gap (CDCG) project to establish baseline practices for the storage, maintenance, and preservation of digital data to help ensure their enhancement and continuing long-term use. Because digital curation, or the management and preservation of digital data over the full life cycle, is of strategic importance to the library and archives fields, IMLS is funding the project through a cooperative agreement with UNC-CH. U.K. partners include the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), which supports innovation in digital technologies in U.K. colleges and universities, and its funded entities, the Strategic Content Alliance (SCA) and the Digital Curation Centre (DCC).

Well-curated data can be made accessible for a variety of audiences. For example, the data gathered by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (www.sdss.org) at the Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico is available to professional astronomers worldwide as well as to schoolchildren, teachers, and citizen scientists through its Galaxy Zoo project. Galaxy Zoo, now in its second version, invites citizen scientists to assist in classifying over a million galaxies (www.galaxyzoo.org). With good preservation techniques, this data will be available into the future to provide documentation of the sky as it currently appears.

Data and information science researchers have already developed many viable applications, models, strategies, and standards for the long term care of digital objects. This project will help bridge a significant gap between the progress of digital curation research and development and the professional practices of archivists, librarians, and museum curators. Project partners will develop guidelines for digital curation practices, especially for staff in small to medium-sized cultural heritage institutions where digital assets are most at risk. Larger institutions will also benefit. To develop baseline practices, a working group will establish and support a network of digital curation practitioners, researchers, and educators through face-to-face meetings, web-based communication, and other communication tools. Project staff will also use surveys, interviews, and case studies to develop a plan for ongoing development of digital curation frameworks, guidance, and best practices. The team will also promote roles that various organizations can play and identify future opportunities for collaboration.

As part of this project, the Digital Curation Manual, which is maintained by the DCC, will be updated and expanded www.dcc.ac.uk/resource/curation-manual/chapters and the Digital Curation Exchange web portal will receive support (http://digitalcurationexchange.org). Through these efforts, the CDCG project will lay the foundation that will inform future training, education, and practice. The project's research, publications, practical tool integration, and outreach and training efforts will be of value to organizations charged with maintaining digital assets over the long term.

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    Oberlin College Adopts Open Access Policy

    Posted in Open Access on November 22nd, 2009

    Oberlin College has adopted an open access policy.

    Here's an excerpt from the press release:

    The Oberlin College General Faculty unanimously endorsed on November 18 a resolution to make their scholarly articles openly accessible on the Internet. As a result of the measure, the rich scholarly output of the Oberlin faculty will become available to a much broader national and international audience. The Oberlin resolution is similar to policies passed at Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of Kansas, and Trinity University.

    "Through this resolution the Oberlin College faculty has expressed a principled commitment to disseminating their scholarship as widely as possible,” said Sebastiaan Faber, Professor of Hispanic Studies and Chair of the General Faculty Library Committee. “The current system of journal publishing, which largely relies on subscriptions and licenses, limits access to research information in significant ways, particularly for students and faculty at smaller and less wealthy institutions, as well as for the general public. Access is also seriously limited around the world in countries with fewer resources."

    Under the new policy, Oberlin faculty and professional staff will make their peer-reviewed, scholarly articles openly accessible in a digital archive managed by the Oberlin College Library as part of the OhioLINK Digital Resource Commons. Oberlin authors may opt out of the policy for a specific article if they are not in a position to sign journal publishing agreements that are compatible with the policy, or for other reasons. The resolution also creates an institutional license that gives Oberlin College the legal right to make the articles accessible on the Internet through the digital archive. The resolution further encourages, but does not require, authors to submit publications other than peer-reviewed articles in the same manner. . . .

    "I'm delighted that Oberlin's faculty and staff have made this important commitment to open access," said Ray English, Azariah Smith Root Director of Libraries. "The movement for open access to scholarly research information is international in scope and growing rapidly as academic institutions, research-funding agencies, and policy makers see the benefits of unfettered access to scholarly research. The library looks forward to putting in place the support structures that are needed to carry out this important initiative."

    Adopted at the recommendation of the General Faculty Library Committee, the policy calls for the committee, in consultation with a faculty council, to establish procedures for carrying out the policy and to monitor its implementation. Policy implementation will be coordinated by a scholarly communications officer, a member of the library staff designated by the director of libraries. The text of the faculty resolution is available online at: http://tinyurl.com/ykyfz2j

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      Preliminary Approval Granted for Amended Google Book Search Settlement

      Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on November 20th, 2009

      US District Court Judge Denny Chin has granted preliminary approval of the amended Google Book Search Settlement.

      Here's the order.

      Read more about it at "Judge Gives Preliminary Approval to Google Deal, Sets Feb. 18 for Final Hearing" and "Judge Sets February Hearing for New Google Books Deal."

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        "Examining Law Journal Publication Agreements for Copyright Transfers and Self-Archiving Rights"

        Posted in Author Rights, Copyright, Scholarly Journals on November 19th, 2009

        Benjamin J. Keele has self-archived "Examining Law Journal Publication Agreements for Copyright Transfers and Self-Archiving Rights" in SSRN.

        Here's an excerpt:

        This study examines 78 law journal publication agreements and finds that a minority of journals ask authors to transfer copyright. Most journals also permit author to self-archive articles with some conditions. The study recommends journals make their agreements publicly available and use licenses instead of copyright transfers.

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          Institutional Repository Manager at University of Essex

          Posted in Digital Library Jobs on November 19th, 2009

          The Research and Enterprise Office of the University of Essex is recruiting an Institutional Repository Manager.

          Here's an excerpt from the ad (Ref# SS948):

          The postholder will be accountable for delivering an institutional repository (IR) for the University’s research outputs, to schedule and on budget, and for managing the IR once implemented. This will involve working closely with other members of the University, both in academic departments/schools and in professional services, to identify a suitable system, to implement it, and to maintain it in the future so as to provide a quality service for those within and outside the University.

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            Systems Programmer 2 at Yale

            Posted in Library IT Jobs on November 19th, 2009

            The Yale University Library is recruiting a Systems Programmer 2.

            Here's an excerpt from the ad (STARS# 8624BR):

            Purpose In a dynamic 24x7x365 production data center environment, working independently and collaboratively as a senior member of an interdepartmental team, provides Unix and Windows system administration, storage and backup administration, and application administration for Yale University Library, consortia, and development partner’s servers and web services. Plays a leadership role in the acquisition and deployment of new hardware.

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              CONTENTdm Version 5.2 Released

              Posted in Digital Asset Management Systems on November 19th, 2009

              OCLC has released CONTENTdm version 5.2.

              Here's an excerpt from the press release:

              With the new release, the CONTENTdm Project Client now supports auto updates, enabling users to get updates as quickly as they are available. It automatically checks for software updates in the background, so work is not interrupted. If updates are available, they are downloaded but not installed until the organization is ready.

              To better support text-based collections, PDF print quality can now be specified in the Project Client, enabling users to select a quality level when generating optional print versions of their compound objects. For users with large, full-text collections, several enhancements improve performance and reduce indexing times. Other enhancements include the addition of a new thesaurus, Canadian Subject Headings (CSH), and configuration options to filter hits in Usage Reports.

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                "Memento: Time Travel for the Web"

                Posted in Digital Curation & Digital Preservation on November 19th, 2009

                Herbert Van de Sompel, Michael L. Nelson, Robert Sanderson, Lyudmila L. Balakireva, Scott Ainsworth, and Harihar Shankar have self-archived "Memento: Time Travel for the Web" in arXiv.org.

                Here's an excerpt:

                The Web is ephemeral. Many resources have representations that change over time, and many of those representations are lost forever. A lucky few manage to reappear as archived resources that carry their own URIs. For example, some content management systems maintain version pages that reflect a frozen prior state of their changing resources. Archives recurrently crawl the web to obtain the actual representation of resources, and subsequently make those available via special-purpose archived resources. In both cases, the archival copies have URIs that are protocol-wise disconnected from the URI of the resource of which they represent a prior state. Indeed, the lack of temporal capabilities in the most common Web protocol, HTTP, prevents getting to an archived resource on the basis of the URI of its original. This turns accessing archived resources into a significant discovery challenge for both human and software agents, which typically involves following a multitude of links from the original to the archival resource, or of searching archives for the original URI. This paper proposes the protocol-based Memento solution to address this problem, and describes a proof-of-concept experiment that includes major servers of archival content, including Wikipedia and the Internet Archive. The Memento solution is based on existing HTTP capabilities applied in a novel way to add the temporal dimension. The result is a framework in which archived resources can seamlessly be reached via the URI of their original: protocol-based time travel for the Web.

                Read more about it at "Time-Travelling Browsers Navigate the Web's Past" and the Memento project website.

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                  "The Practice and Perception of Web Archiving in Academic Libraries and Archives"

                  Posted in Digital Archives and Special Collections, Digital Curation & Digital Preservation on November 18th, 2009

                  Lisa A. Gregory's Master's theses, "The Practice and Perception of Web Archiving in Academic Libraries and Archives," is available from the School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

                  Here's an excerpt:

                  In order to dig deeper into possible reasons behind archivists’ and librarians’ reluctance to archive Web sites, the study described here asks professionals to reveal their Web archiving experiences as well as the information sources they consult regarding archiving Web sites. Specifically, the following two research questions are addressed: Are librarians and archivists at institutions of higher education currently engaged in or considering archiving Web sites? What sources do these professionals consult for information about Web archiving?

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                    Head of Library Systems at Johns Hopkins

                    Posted in Library IT Jobs on November 18th, 2009

                    The Sheridan Libraries at Johns Hopkins University are recruiting a Head of Library Systems.

                    Here's an excerpt from the ad:

                    Responsibilities include technology analysis and strategic planning; overseeing implementation of central and distributed hardware, software, networking, desktop support, and help desk services; coordinating computing and telecommunication support for various library and university activities; supervising staff; recommending operating budgets required to support, enhance and expand the Libraries’ digital resources.

                    Works closely with other library departments in developing and maintaining library services; collaborates variously with the Digital Research and Curation Center; coordinates and collaborates with Information Technology @ Johns Hopkins and the other university libraries, as appropriate, to facilitate use and development of the Libraries’ electronic resources, as well as other electronic resources on campus; maintains strong partnerships with IT staff throughout the University in the ongoing assessment of and planning for the robustness of Hopkins’ network infrastructure; coordinates computing and telecommunication support for the shared library management system, the library’s Web site, and other Web-based services; collaborates with Libraries’ Human Resources Manager on technology training.

                    Manages and implements of special projects, as appropriate. The Libraries’ budget is approximately $27 million with a staff of 150. Library systems manages and supports: staff desktop workstations and application software at six sites; Windows servers; paid printing services; network hardware and infrastructure for six library sites; wired and wireless public access networks; Unix servers running Solaris and Linux; SirsiDynix Horizon integrated library system and HIP; library Web site; and library-specific applications, such as SFX. The Head of Library Systems reports to the Associate Dean for Library Digital Programs and serves as a member of the Libraries’ Management Team.

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                      NSF Awards $20 Million to DataONE (Observation Network for Earth) Project

                      Posted in ARL Libraries, Cyberinfrastructure/E-Science, Data Curation, Open Data, and Research Data Management on November 18th, 2009

                      The National Science Foundation has awarded a $20 million grant to the DataONE (Observation Network for Earth) Project, which reports to both the Office of the Vice President of Research and the University Libraries at the University of New Mexico. William Michener, professor and director of e-science initiatives at University Libraries, is directing the project.

                      Here's an excerpt from the press release:

                      Researchers at UNM have partnered with dozens of other universities and agencies to create DataONE, a global data access and preservation network for earth and environmental scientists that will support breakthroughs in environmental research.

                      DataONE is designed to provide universal access to data about life on Earth and the environment that sustains it. The underlying technologies will provide open, persistent, robust, and secure access to well-described and easily discovered Earth observational data.

                      Expected users include scientists, educators, librarians, resource managers, and the public. By providing easy and open access to a broad range of science data, as well as tools for managing, analyzing, and visualizing data, DataONE will be transformative in the speed with which researchers will be able to assemble and analyze data sets and in the types of problems they will be able to address. . . .

                      DataONE is one of two $20 million awards made this year as part of the National Science Foundation's (NSF) DataNet program. The collaboration of universities and government agencies coalesced to address the mounting need for organizing and serving up vast amounts of highly diverse and inter-related but often-incompatible scientific data. Resulting studies will range from research that illuminates fundamental environmental processes to identifying environmental problems and potential solutions. . . .

                      The DataONE team will study how a vast digital data network can provide secure and permanent access into the future, and also encourage scientists to share their information. The team will help determine data citation standards, as well as create the tools for organizing, managing, and publishing data.

                      The resulting computing and processing "cyberinfrastructure" will be made permanently available for use by the broader national and international science communities. DataONE is led by the University of New Mexico, and includes additional partner organizations across the United States as well as from Europe, Africa, South America, Asia, and Australia.

                      This grant is important nationally, and locally especially for our research community. University Libraries Dean Martha Bedard said, "The University Libraries are key partners in UNM research initiatives, and are excited and committed to supporting the emerging area of data curation, which this grant seeks to support in sophisticated ways."

                      DataONE will build a set of geographically distributed Coordinating Nodes that play an important role in facilitating all of the activities of the global network, as well as a network of Member Nodes that host relevant data and tools. The initial three Coordinating Nodes will be at the University of New Mexico, UC Santa Barbara (housed at the Davidson Library), and at the University of Tennessee/Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Member Nodes will be located in association with universities, libraries, research networks, and agencies worldwide.

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                        Brenda Johnson Named as Dean of Indiana University Libraries

                        Posted in ARL Libraries on November 18th, 2009

                        Brenda Johnson has been named as the Ruth Lilly Dean of the Indiana University Libraries. Johnson is currently the University Librarian at the University of California, Santa Barbara, a position that she has held since January 1, 2008.

                        Here's an excerpt from the press release:

                        "I am delighted to have been selected to serve as the next Ruth Lilly Dean of University Libraries at IU," Johnson said. "I believe a library is the greatest metaphor for a university. It provides essential resources for academic research, is a repository for scholarly achievement, a source of intellectual inspiration, a stage for public discourse, a center of cultural life, an incubator for new ideas, and is, in and of itself, a 'community'."

                        "I'm delighted to see the IU Libraries already stand very strong in embodying those values and concepts," Johnson continued. "I look forward to leading a library that is already recognized as one of the top libraries in the country as we engage with faculty, students and staff to achieve even-greater excellence and to create innovative and emergent services for a changing academic environment."

                        Major initiatives coordinated by Johnson at the University of California, Santa Barbara, include planning for a $62 million library addition and renovation, the UCSB Reads program (a program that engages the campus and community in conversations about a key topic while reading the same book), increased emphasis on outreach to students and faculty, and a rejuvenation of fundraising efforts for the UCSB libraries.

                        Prior to assuming the role of University Librarian at UCSB, Johnson served as interim co-university librarian of the University of Michigan Libraries. She served the University of Michigan Libraries in various roles for more than 20 years. From 1997-2007, she served as associate university librarian for public services. . . .

                        "Brenda Johnson's background and experience with the Big Ten and the Committee on Institutional Cooperation have prepared her well for the IU Libraries deanship," said [Debora] Shaw [professor in the School of Library and Information Science]. "We on the search committee were especially impressed with her breadth of understanding and her sense of how to help the libraries continue to build on their strengths and partnerships."

                        "I am delighted that Brenda Johnson will be joining IU as Dean of Libraries," said [Bobby] Schnabel [dean of the School of Informatics and Computing and interim vice president for research]. "Her vision for the future directions of libraries, enthusiastic personality, and vast experience and proven leadership abilities at both the University of Michigan and at UC, Santa Barbara, make her an outstanding choice." . . .

                        The dean of University Libraries provides administrative leadership for a system of libraries on eight campuses. On the Bloomington campus, the dean provides strategic planning and policy direction in the areas of collection development, public and technical services, facilities planning and personnel policies.

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