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Sharing library experiences from around the world

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Anne Powell INASP
Miriam Conteh-Morgan University of Sierra Leone
What are the common themes for research libraries around the world? What are the differences? What can we learn from each other? And how can publishers and libraries work together to ensure that researchers everywhere have access to the materials they need, and the skills to evaluate and use those materials? This session will be led by a librarian who has worked for many years in both African and international university contexts. She will share experiences of new developments and challenges through her career and current work helping African students develop their critical thinking skills

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Sharing library experiences from around the world

  1. 1. Sharing library experiences from around the world Miriam Conteh-Morgan, University of Sierra Leone @micm80 Anne Powell, INASP @annepowellINASP Sioux Cumming, INASP @sdcumming
  2. 2. What will be covered in this session • What are some common themes for research libraries around the world? • What are the differences? • What can we learn from each other? • How can publishers and libraries work together to ensure that researchers everywhere have access to the materials they need, and the skills to evaluate and use those materials?
  3. 3. I hold this truth to be self-evident… …that ALLlibraries are created EQUAL
  4. 4. DISCUSSION POINTS •Life in two places •More commonalities than differences? •How the library is leading change: Examples from University of Sierra Leone
  5. 5. OHIO AND SIERRA LEONE Pop 7.7 m Pop 11.7 m
  6. 6. A TALE OF TWO LIBRARIES OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY MAIN LIBRARY (1876) UNIVERSITY OF SIERRA LEONE LIBRARY AT FOURAH BAY COLLEGE (1827)
  7. 7. • 70+ faculty librarians (2013) • 17 libraries across 7 campuses, plus 8 special collections • State flagship university • Factoid: Cat loving • 20 faculty librarians (2019) • 7 libraries across 3 campuses, plus 1 special collection • National flagship university • Factoid: Christian ministers
  8. 8. ALL LIBRARIES ARE CREATED EQUAL • Service to a chosen public • Always think they are underfunded/need more funds • Always want … IT staff, equipment, space… • Dedicated staff (with an image problem?) • Creative staff and users
  9. 9. THE CAPILLARIES OF THE ACADEMIC BLOOD SUPPLY
  10. 10. WHAT IS DIFFERENT OR COMMON? • Scale and pace of change (scholarly communication; researcher trainings; innovations on campus) • But the focus tends to be on DEFICITS: • Clouds the inclination to look more closely and get a clearer image of libraries and librarianship in Africa • Clouds the inclination of libraries in Africa to look more closely at their strengths and opportunities
  11. 11. “In many ways, the experience is not that different, surprisingly. In all positions that require pushing a change agenda through, it is a matter of understanding the governance structures and ensuring you are able to communicate clearly to those people who are in a position to make decisions.” (Danny Kingsley, Jan 2019, comparing Cambridge University Library with her time at Australian National University, www.researchinformation.info/interview/truly- exciting-time) “Libraries are oddly fractal. They feature strangely recurring patterns.” (Stuart Kells (2018), “The Strange Magic of Libraries”, www.theparisreview.org/blog/2018/04/09/the-strange-magic-of-libraries)
  12. 12. HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS IN SIERRA LEONE STRATEGIC REORGANISATION
  13. 13. Transforming Sierra Leone’s HE System • AQHEd-SL – consortium of 7 HEIs, international partners (including INASP), professional bodies and a gender advocacy group aiming to transform teaching and learning • As a support unit, the library saw an opening and exploited its capilliary role 16/04/2019 13
  14. 14. USL LIBRARY-led INITIATIVES • Discovery platform to leverage teaching, learning and research – ILS, IR + E-journal publishing • Cross-institution training on academic writing for early-career researchers • E-resource training of early-career researchers and students • Writing center for students – critical thinking skills development
  15. 15. FRAMING THE DISCUSSION COLONIAL  POSTCOLONIAL  DECOLONIAL “The demonstrated existence of Northern dominance and influence does not imply Southern passivity, nor uncontested domination. Knowledge production [Global librarianship] is now negotiated, and creative ways of participating are devised…[a] complex interweaving of Northern paradigms and Southern Tier experiences.” Robert Morrell. “The global south is changing how knowledge is made, shared and used” The Conversation, March 25, 2019. theconversation.com/the-global-south-is-changing-how-knowledge-is-made-shared-and-used-113943. [25March, 2019. Review of Colliyer et al. Knowledge and Global Power: Making New Sciences in the South. University of Witswaterstrand Press, 2019
  16. 16. • Supporting critical thinking skills • Helping students and researchers navigate trustworthy journals • Recognizing biases • Publisher negotiations/access support 16/04/2019 17 University library roles in the era of fake news
  17. 17. INASP’s critical thinking online course • Online course for student self study • Toolkit for face to face discussion materials • Pilot and development of materials – Classroom sessions – Faculty support mechanisms • Transfer of content Taster unit: moodle.inasp.info/course/view.php?id=141 16/04/2019 18
  18. 18. INASP’s critical thinking online course “I have been able to learn a lot from the course. And also I have been inspired to share with others for the benefit of all. …I look forward to apply what I have been learning. And I'll be visiting the modules for reminding myself of important things from modules.” - Student, Mzumbe University, Tanzania Taster unit: moodle.inasp.info/course/view.php?id=141 16/04/2019 19
  19. 19. It is vital that Southern researchers have the opportunity to publish their research and for it to be discoverable by other local - as well as global - researchers
  20. 20. Southern journals face challenges in being respected internationally. This can limit the perceived credibility of the published research. The challenges for Southern journals Lack of financial and structural support Lack of familiarity of international publishing standards Under-represented in international indexes and rankings Legitimate but unfamiliar journals wrongly labelled as “predatory”
  21. 21. A far-reaching set of criteria for assessing Southern journals www.journalquality.info Jointly hosted by
  22. 22. Understanding local contexts and challenges faced by Southern journals The JPPS framework builds on many years of work by AJOL and INASP in supporting the dissemination of Southern journals and understanding the various local contexts and challenges faced by these journals. Susan Murray Executive Director of AJOL ” “ Susan Murray with Mr Adhikari from NepJOL
  23. 23. Reassures readers and authors that journals meet international standards to a particular level Guides journal editors on improving publishing processes Acknowledges journals that have attained internationally recognized publishing standards
  24. 24. NOTE: JPPS does NOT assess quality of research content, only publishing practices www.journalquality.info/criteria Over 100 criteria based on: Inclusion standards set out by international journal indices and industry guidelines * Experience of contexts and practices in developing country journal publishing Testing and feedback from journal editors in Africa Assessment criteria *Including DOAJ, SciELO South Africa, Clarivate, Scopus, WAME, FAME, COPE
  25. 25. New title - has been publishing for less than two years, but meets basic inclusion requirements Two stars - compliant with additional publishing practice quality criteria Three stars - consistently excellent in the technical and editorial publishing best practices set out in the JPPS framework criteria One star - has met the basic inclusion requirements for at least two years No stars - not currently meeting the basic criteria for inclusion on a JOL platform Inactive - has not added new content to the JOL platform in over one year Assessment criteria
  26. 26. of assessed journals available only at of JPPS level added to each journal’s site provided to the editor, highlighting areas to improve of every journal on a JOL platform Assessment Report Display Official list www.journalquality.info How it works by experts in international publishing Over 900 journals across six JOL platforms have now been assessed against the JPPS levels
  27. 27. Dr Anuja Abayadeera, Editor Sri Lankan Journal of Anaesthesiology “I am thrilled with the two-star status as it is, but I have stirred the editorial board that we have to achieve three-star status. I am determined to work towards it. Thank you so much for the constant support you have given me to work on the journal.”
  28. 28. Seeking funding for: Implementing the JPPS framework for southern journals beyond the JOLs Training and advisory support via face- to-face and online methods to journal editors to address knowledge and skills gaps Next steps www.journalquality.info @INASPinfo | @JOLsProject |@AJOLinfo
  29. 29. Think. Check. Submit. helps researchers identify trusted journals for their research. Through a range of tools and practical resources, this international, cross-sector initiative aims to educate researchers, promote integrity, and build trust in credible research and publications. thinkchecksubmit.org 16/04/2019 32 Navigating trustworthy journals: Think. Check. Submit.
  30. 30. • Geography – of journals and researchers • Language • Selection of materials in line with institutional and national priorities • Hidden biases in metrics • Access 16/04/2019 33 Recognizing biases
  31. 31. Questions Comments Discussion What role do libraries have in addressing critical thinking/navigating fake and low- quality resources? 16/04/2019 34 Over to you …
  32. 32. MIRIAM CONTEH-MORGAN DEPUTY UNIVERSITY & CAMPUS LIBRARIAN UNIVERSITY OF SIERRA LEONE miriam.conteh-morgan@usl.edu.sl | mcmorgan@ipam.edu.sl | Twitter: @micm80

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