Even if you’re not familiar with what EthicShare is or what it looks like, this slide gives a good big picture of EthicShare’s conceptual architecture. You can see just how interconnected content, access, community and governance are. If any one of these gears was removed, the EthicShare project wouldn’t move forward, and in fact, would not truly be EthicShare.In a nutshell, EthicShare is an open, freely-available online research environment that supports information discovery and collaboration for scholars of practical and bio ethics. It’s based at the University of Minnesota, built by a team made up of people from the Center for Bioethics, the University Libraries, and the Dept. of Computer Science.
I’m just going to show a couple of screen shots; I’d be happy to give demos if anyone’s interested. This is EthicShare’s homepage.
The groups page; collaboration (librarians familiar with what general search sites look like). This is the content of the Bioethics Librarians group.
A little bit about the survey:It was done through Survey Monkey account (which the EthicShare team had used before).Our final N was 136. The list was made up of relevant department liaison librarians at the institutions listed on the bioethics.net website, as well as EthicShare registered users who identified themselves as librarians. 52 responses; only the first question was answered by all 52 respondents. The questions were not required, and so each question had a different response rate.
Every respondent did answer this question.Those who had visited were evenly split between those who had only visited once and those who had been a handful of times, but about ½ of the visitors stated that they were registered on the site. Those who said no fell into 3 categories, based on their comments: didn’t know about it, hadn’t had the time yet, or felt the resource was out of their scope.
The most used features for the librarians were the basic and advanced search. 1 person also commented that he/she uses the exporting citations to reference managers feature, which I hadn’t included on the original list.
This question asked all respondents, whether or not they had been to the site, whether they would participate in certain EthicShare related-activities. Librarians were most likely to participate in “pointing to EthicShare from a library website” and “mentioning EthicShare during course-integrated instruction.” Using EthicShare to find bioethics resources was also fairly high. The librarians who responded were least likely to contribute events, citations, and keywords to the site, which isn’t perhaps surprising.Librarians were more likely to participate in groups with other librarians (like the Bioethics Librarians group, e.g.) than in groups with their users.
The librarians were more likely to mention EthicShare to graduate students and faculty than to undergraduates and the general public, and as the quotes indicate, often in meetings and in specific courses to audiences who may find it useful in their research.
The feedback on whether EthicShare is helpful to librarians serving their users yielded some interesting feedback that highlighted desired features as well as features that could be highlighted further when we market more to librarians. One respondent desired abstracts, and another implied that we’re going to have to prove some value-added beyond what current resources already offer.On the question of whether EthicShare was helpful to the librarians themselves, responses were across the board. Some found the networking helpful, others did not. Most did not know or have enough experience to offer an opinion.
A few final pretty pictures and interesting demographics. The median birth year for the 35 who supplied it was 1956 (ranging from 1941-1981). I don’t want to over-generalize, but the workforce is changing and “digital natives” will eventually hold these positions. At that point, some of the lack of enthusiasm for the online collaboration/networking aspects might shift. The word cloud is from the titles of those who responded. Most of the respondents did have a bioethics department affiliated. But, as we mainly used the Bioethics.net list to find most of the original list, it was a little surprising to see that a number did not; perhaps we accidently contacted some of the wrong people, or perhaps there are librarians who are registered users of EthicShare who are interested in EthicShare for other reasons?Affiliations with departments: Bioethics Department44.1%15Medical Department44.1%15Philosophy Department44.1%15Religion Department20.6%7
A few basic conclusions-Some factors to consider: time, research areas, population served, interest in collaborative features-Although some librarians may never use the features, they can pass on knowledge to their users, and EthicShare could yet be a place where librarians could connect with their users. Some librarians may use the collaborative features themselves, and we will continue to build the Bioethics Librarians group as a librarian resource.-And we will continue to benefit and learn from both our librarian users and our librarian team members, and welcome communication and feedback.
Entering the World of Online Collaboration: A Case Study of Librarians on EthicShare.org
Entering the World of Online Collaboration <br />A Case Study of Librarians on EthicShare.org<br />Amy Donahue, NLM Associate Fellow<br />Kate McCready, EthicShare Project Director<br />This research was supported in part by an appointment to the NLM Associate Fellowship Program sponsored by the National Library of Medicine and administered by the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education.<br />
Each question had a different response rate.</li></li></ul><li>Librarian Survey Results<br />No<br />“Did not know it existed.”<br />“Because of lack of time, not lack of interest.<br />Yes<br />“I only use the site for information purpose as a way to learn about faculty/student interests, since I am a liaison for the department.”<br />“I will be visiting it routinely now.”<br />
Librarian Survey Results<br />Basic Search<br />Advanced Search<br />Ethics in the News<br />Access full text<br />Groups<br /># of Respondents<br />Name of Feature<br />
Librarian Survey Results<br />Most likely activities:<br />Mention EthicShare<br />Point to EthicShare from resource page<br />Look for resources for patrons<br />Least likely:<br />Contribute keywords<br />Contribute citations<br />Contribute events<br />Participate in general groups<br />EthicShare Activities<br />Percent of Respondents<br />
Librarian Survey Results<br />How/Why?<br /><ul><li> “I will be mentioning it at my next two historical resource instruction classes to undergraduate history of health sciences students”
“EthicShare can be a useful tool for research, so I want these groups to be aware of its existence and basic functions”</li></ul># of Respondents<br />Group<br />
Is EthicShare helpful to librarians serving their users?<br /><ul><li>“…there are no abstracts or other information about the indexed resources, again, reducing the value.”
“yes. Can lead to content, groups, and discussions that would be hard to find otherwise.”
“Probably not a lot. Between PubMed's "bioethics" subset, Philosopher's Index, and Google Scholar, we probably have it covered…”</li></ul>“The Right Tool”<br />Emily Barney, http://bit.ly/aH1cJY<br />Is EthicShare helpful to librarians in other capacities (e.g., networking)? <br /><ul><li>“Yes, especially as it becomes more widely used. It would be a good resource for finding experts or for getting feedback on library issues such as search strategies or collection development.”
“No. Networking feature is more appropriate to long-term researchers.”
“No. Librarians are too busy being librarians. We do not have time to be ethicists too.</li></li></ul><li>Survey Results - Demographics<br />Bioethics Dept: <br />Yes<br />Median birth year: 1956<br />No?<br />
Conclusions<br />Some librarians will be better served than others by EthicShare. <br />Librarians may be involved in the collaboration aspects in different ways.<br />Librarians are likely to post EthicShare up on resource pages and talk about it in classes, increasing the number of people who then know about the site. The EthicShare team will try to take advantage of this in a “teach the teacher” approach.<br />The EthicShare experiment will continue!<br />
Many thanks to the EthicShare Dev Team and the NLM Associate Fellowship Program, and to all the librarians who participated!<br />Amy Donahue- email@example.com<br />Kate McCready - firstname.lastname@example.org<br />Thank You!<br />EthicShare: http://www.ethicshare.org<br />Background: http://www.lib.umn.edu/about/ethicshare<br />