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The challenge of the Digital Library. Author: Ros Pan

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Case study of the managerial and personal challenges presentedby the digital library. Presented at Internet Librarian conference, London, 2007

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The challenge of the Digital Library. Author: Ros Pan

  1. 1. Session C101 – Challenges of DigitalLibrary Service, “a little lessconversation a little more action” Rosalind Pan Sub-Librarian Electronic Services University College Dublin Library (Ireland) rosalind.pan@ucd.ie UCD Library Leabharlann UCD University College Dublin, An Coláiste Ollscoile, Baile Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland Átha Cliath, Belfield, Baile Átha Cliath 4, Eire
  2. 2. UCD library is engaged…. and makinggood digital library progress
  3. 3. We are engaged….
  4. 4. We are engaged…. CSE – Google Custom Search Engine
  5. 5. We are engaged…. Mash-up Second Life
  6. 6. We are engaged…. Google Earth
  7. 7. We are engaged….Second Life
  8. 8. We are engaged….Blogs
  9. 9. We are engaged…. RSS Blogs have RSS feeds, plus maintain 2 for News and Electronic Resource News
  10. 10. We are engaged….
  11. 11. We are engaged….web 2.0 and widgets http://www.doodle.ch/ www.polldaddy.com
  12. 12. We are engaged….
  13. 13. We are engaged….
  14. 14. We are engaged….
  15. 15. We are engaged….
  16. 16. So the digital library at UCD isdeveloping…• Online resources• Online resource discovery tools• Online library services• Library 2.0 additions
  17. 17. So … WHAT IS THE CHALLENGE?• Individual challenges – the role, the skills, time management• Management challenge – teams, processes, management and policy making methods• Evolution or Transformation?
  18. 18. Web 2.0 and Library 2.0 From http://www.webware.com./html/ww/100.html
  19. 19. It has all happened quickly“A typical academic library needs a whole arsenal of products, including the following:• An ILS for managing the librarys physical collections• An OpenURL link resolver to provide linking and other access options for electronic content• A federated searching tool to make it easier for users to search multiple information resources simultaneously• An electronic resource management (ERM) system to help staff manage subscriptions to electronic content products• An institutional repository for archiving and accessing scholarly articles or other material produced within the organization• An application for creating and managing local digital content, such as photograph collections, digitized manuscripts, or other special digital collections “From : Marshall Breeding, Knitting Systems Together, Computers in Libraries, 26(9) 2006, pp 32-35
  20. 20. Some challenges summarised
  21. 21. 1. The individual challenge: perceptionsof role and range of skills • Update web and portal pages - javascript • Maintain RSS feed, blog, WIKI • Work on online tutorials • Produce quality illustrated guides and workbooks • Use online business tools – applications, online calendars and meeting fixers, RSS current awareness systems • Contribute to online reference service via Chat • Put content into VLE environment • Master new resource discovery tools
  22. 22. 1 The individual challenge RSS feeds for current awareness Netvibes My principal current awareness tool now – new since mid 2005 Had RSS workshops for Library staff in Summer 2006 – but how many are using it?
  23. 23. 1. The individual challenge Webstrat.blogspot.comwww.wetpaint.com
  24. 24. 1. The individual challenge •Lecture + Podcast •Podcast of student interview •Online quiz •Handbook - 2 formats •Handout - summary •Individual activity •Group tutorial •On-line FAQ
  25. 25. 2. More individual challenges: timemanagement and productivity • Analyse how you spend your time • Delegate to library assistants all around you • Time management in a serious way - the simple “to do” list is a wonderful tool • Keep meetings to a schedule with action points, timelines and designated persons responsible • Multi-tasking at least 4 strands is required – core work, quick bits, unexpected problems, unexpected opportunities • A fast pace of work is required • Need aims, objectives personal and group targets
  26. 26. Sector and Library and Organisation information knowledge Managing and skills self Learning and ICT teachingProjectworking Marketing
  27. 27. 3. The challenges of lack of confidenceand risk aversion on digital service• You cannot wait months or years before developing digital library service• You don’t need to wait and see what other libraries are doing every time – you can lead as well as follow• “A little less conversation a little more action”• You may have failures but that is an acceptable risk to take, rewards don’t come without risk• Libraries need an experimental strand, with no definite known outcomes at the start, to run alongside the normal management targets and timelines “Always say yes”
  28. 28. 4. Challenge: Am I turning into a legacy staffproblem?BEBOFlickrYouTubeMySpaceDel.icio.us?A librarySquidoolens??? –you’ve gotto be joking! http://www.secondlife.com/
  29. 29. 4. Challenge: Am I turning into a legacystaff problem? … Spreading FUD about beta level technologies in their infancy doesnt elevate libraries or librarians, it makes us look even more antiquated than were all ready perceived (Go ahead, ask any teenager). [http://features.lisnews.com/features/05/10/07/0921246.shtml?tid=18]
  30. 30. 5. Some challenges for management:agility, quick response and retainingcontrol“As organizations libraries are slow movers, hosted by slowly moving institutions. Libraries are slow to recognize the fact that a new technology may allow [or beg] for a new mode of operations. The information world runs on Internet time” (Van de Sompel, 2000)
  31. 31. 5. Some challenges for management: agility, quick responseand retaining control• Agile and quick systems for strategy formulation and decision-making• A different vision of meetings and how to do them• Bring in all grades and people from all teams• Bring individual enthusiasts into the process, avoid Techno-Worship• Avoid by-passing of management structures• Need a proper managed cycle: – Brainstorming for new and modified services – Planning for services and success – Evaluating those services on a regular basis
  32. 32. 6. Some more challenges formanagement: planning the digitallibrary in the longer term and sorting outthe mess• Senior management must lead developments as well as manage them• We need a long term strategic plan• We need to put all developments into a wider coherent plan• We need to review the wide range of digital systems that we have• We need to begin to integrate systems and also to work on interoperability
  33. 33. 7. Some more challenges formanagement• Can we evolve or must we radically transform?• Tweak existing teams or have totally new ones to match our digital library?• Some new types of library role?• Mainstreaming v. Dedicated e-service teams?• The IT skills issue
  34. 34. Just a few Solutions to end with
  35. 35. Possibilities – New types of roleOnline tutorial developers, Podcast developers, Blog and WIKI developers, Library business process managers, Information Skills co-ordinators, Website managers, Data librarians, GIS librarians, repository managers
  36. 36. Possibilities – New groups• Emerging Technologies Group• Web Development Group• Electronic Resources Framework
  37. 37. Possibilities – new library teams Review current workflows Identify mainstreaming opportunities and changes in role needed Identify where extra staff could be added to supplement teams Consider what additional Digital library teams are needed with what skills
  38. 38. Possibilities – awareness and trainingprogramme for library staff 1-off events Series of related training All year round programmes External programmes
  39. 39. A more radical approach required?BY ROB FAULKNER“When McMaster University hailed the hiring of a new chief librarian last year, then-provost Ken Norrie called the arrival of the new man a “coup.” Now, just seven months into the job, Jeffrey Trzeciak is shedding parts of the old regime and changing the basic mission of the library.Forget resorting the card catalogue — his “transformation ” is all about Second Life, blogs, wikis and the hiring of what’s likely the first gaming librarian at a university library…..”
  40. 40. A more radical approach required?Digital Transition Brings Changes to LC’s Workforce“…LC Director for Workforce Acquisitions Bill Ayers said 200 employees had taken advantage of a voluntary retirement incentive for librarians who had become “very comfortable” with traditional librarianship and chose not to gain new technological skills …LC is preparing a workforce transformation initiative to help current employees upgrade their abilities while attracting new staff with digital- era skills.”
  41. 41. Thank you.Rosalind.pan@ucd.ie

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