Tuesday, October 17, 2017

#NDPthree : Opening Scholarly Communications

Ashley Sands, IMLS - Moderator

This conversation was mostly on gaps.

Ixchel Faniel, OCLC - Comes to this as a person who studies research data management issues.  (1) Continued education for librarians an archivists - There have been studies on this in Europe, Australia and the U.S.   Librarians are interested in this.  Existing staff are being repurposed and they need the correct training. There needs to be an investment and a clear return in investment. There needs to be a more concerted effort conceptually. (2) Meeting researchers needs - Expect to see a big return here.   Expanded data and new methods of collaboration.  Sharing data and reusing data.  How do activities in the data life-cycle influence each other?  We need to consider the full life-cycle. What and who are touching the data?  What is the result of those touches?  How are downstream activities impacted?

Mark Parsons, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute - He comes from a data perspective, although new to RPI and IMLS.  He is skeptical of the term “scholarly communications” although he likes the broad definition in the NDP report.  Infrastructure is a body of relationships.  Libraries and museums are mediators and thus part of the infrastructure.  In terms of mediation, we are not done until people can use the data to improve their lives. We need to focus on users and providers.   Mediators need to work from different perspectives. We need radical collaboration and radical trust.  We need to develop standards.  He believe the big gap is around economics.  Scholarly communications needs reciprocity.  We need to share.

Merce Crosas, IQSS, Harvard University - IQSS develops tools which help in research. They help with data management, FAIR data plans, data citation principles.  (1) building communities - Bringing together the users and e developers.   (2) supporting larger data sets -These needs to be done in the cloud. Your work will be in the cloud. It could be an open cloud.  (3) supporting sensitive data - Sensitive data sets exist now.  How can they be made usable?  What privacy tools are needed? (4) intregration of the data life cycle - It needs to be easy and interoperable. 

John Wang, University of Notre Dame - Example of a book that included multimedia.  Researchers are incorporating various data/artifacts in their work.  How do you preserve these materials?  How do you assure continued access?  The problem of interconnected objects.  Preservation is often an afterthought.  Many faculty do not understand that librarians can help solve these problems.  And they do not engage librarians early enough in the process.

Sayeed Choudhury, John Hopkins University - From innovation to impact.  Think of return on impact, not just return on investment.  The infrastructure is invisible until something goes wrong.  If someone uses data in your institution without your help, that is impact.  If someone uses data in unanticipated ways, that is impact. One way of having impact is to use as librarians what others have created.  He noted that using content is continual and creation is continual, which causes problems and concerns.

Ashley -  What is the most pressing problem or concern?  
  • Sayeed said that IMLS has a probing of view that no one else does. What is IMLS seeing? 
  • Mark’s answer was trust.  Can IMLS help to steer the conversation in the academy, especially in terms of what publications are (format) and how they are rewarded? 
  • Ixchel wondered how we work collaboratively.  What changes are needed?  
  • Merce said that IMLS needs to recognize the changing output of funding efforts.
Comment - In the arts - digital arts - some of these topics have already been discussed.  Can we learn from them? 

John - There are different ways of thinking about value that occurs much further upstream.  We cannot plan for the unanticipated, but we can facilitate it.

Emily - Have you had success in working outside the library environment?  What was needed? 

Mark - You need lots of time to build relationships and trust. You need to make a commitment. 

Merce - Spoke about collaborating across cultures and borders.  Everyone needs to have some sense of ownership.

Roger Schonfeld - He noted the breadth in the definition of scholarly communications.  For profit investments in end to end scholarly communication workflow. Is it less about communications than research workflow? John’s answer spoke to partnership.

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