Librarians Ted Baldwin and Eira Tansey receive honors at UC Faculty Awards Ceremony

In a ceremony held April 2 during Research and Innovation Week, librarians Ted Baldwin and Eira Tansey were recognized for their contributions to colleagues and to their fields. The Office of the Provost and the Office of Research jointly sponsor the awards to honor faculty who have demonstrated excellence in teaching, research and/or service. Continue reading Librarians Ted Baldwin and Eira Tansey receive honors at UC Faculty Awards Ceremony

The University of Cincinnati Libraries Annual Progress Report, 2019-2020: A Year Like No Other

annual progress report graphicWhat a year it’s been.

The University of Cincinnati Libraries Annual Progress Report, this year completely online, covers July 2019 through June 2020, an academic year that started off normally, but in the spring would be disrupted in ways never thought possible because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Fall semester was business as usual with students, faculty, researchers and staff accessing our facilities and resources for research and study, or simply to grab a cup of coffee between classes. Librarians and staff provided instruction on how to find the best research materials, offered reference assistance, collected and made our collections available and collaborated with faculty and researchers to translate information and data into knowledge. The usual activities in the library would come to a sudden halt spring semester.

This year’s report reviews how we responded to the Covid-19 pandemic, but it also celebrates our numerous accomplishments, highlights new special collections and library exhibits, spotlights the achievements of our faculty and staff and provides usage stats and financial information.

As the semester and 2020 come to a close, we wish you warm wishes for the holiday season. May the new year bring you health, harmony and joy.

Read Source, the online newsletter, to learn about the news, events, people and happenings in UC Libraries

Read Source, the online newsletter, to learn about the news, events, people and happenings in UC Libraries.

In this issue of Source, Dean Xuemao Wang reflects on his eight years at UC and asks questions about the future. We announce a new collaboration to manage UC’s Art Collection, as well as share the news that The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded the University of Cincinnati a $700K renewal grant to advance and expand the Digital Scholarship Center’s (DSC) “catalyst” model.

Ted Baldwin and Rebecca Olson tell of a partnership with the UC Venture Lab to boost innovation and Melissa Cox Norris writes about the New Way(s) of Work.

Remote events are featured in this issue of Source, including the recent Life of the Mind lecture with links to the video and bibliography of submitted UC faculty and staff creative and scholarly works, as well as upcoming events announced such as UC DATA Day and the Cecil Striker Webinar Series.

Read these articles, as well as past issues, on the web at http://libapps.libraries.uc.edu/source/ and via e-mail. To receive Source via e-mail, contact melissa.norris@uc.edu to be added to the mailing list.

Read Source, the online newsletter, to learn more about the news, events, people and happenings in UC Libraries.

source headerRead Source, the online newsletter, to learn more about the news, events, people and happenings in UC Libraries.

In this issue of Source, Dean Xuemao Wang writes about how a digital core is part of a 21st-century liberal education.

Two exhibits that highlight women who fought for equality are featured in this issue along with an article by Kevin Grace, university archivist and head of the Archives and Rare Books Library, who writes of Mark Twain’s relationship with Cincinnati, including that quote attributed to Twain about where he hopes to be when the world ends.

This issue announces the exciting comeback of the former popular Authors, Editors & Composers exhibit that will combine with the current Life of the Mind lecture to form one event that will celebrate the achievements of UC’s artists, authors, editors & composers. We announce the 5th University of Cincinnati Libraries Annual Progress Report – A Year of Reflection.

Lastly, we announce two upcoming events – the second Hidden Treasures: An Adopt-A-Book Evening on March 12 and the upcoming annual Cecil Striker Lecture to focus on Dr. Christian R. Holmes and scheduled for May 7.

Read these articles, as well as past issues, on the web at http://libapps.libraries.uc.edu/source/ and via e-mail. To receive Source via e-mail, contact melissa.norris@uc.edu to be added to the mailing list.

Announcing the 5th Annual University of Cincinnati Libraries 2018/19 Annual Progress Report – A Year of Reflection.

annual progress report coverThis past year the University of Cincinnati marked its Bicentennial led by the tenants: To Honor the past. Elevate the present. Bend the future. While
celebrating the Libraries’ vital role in the past 200 years of the university, we also took this opportunity to reflect on our goals, objectives, accomplishments and gaps as the next phase of our strategic direction.

Our year of reflection has resulted in the need for the creation of an emerging, and even bolder, Strategic Framework – one built upon the knowledge of our strengths and challenges, coupled with the needs and perspectives of our users, and that will propel us forward as we strive to become the globally engaged intellectual commons of the university – now and well into the future.

The University of Cincinnati Libraries Annual Progress Report, 2018/2019, available online at https://issuu.com/uclibraries/docs/uclannualreport18_19, makes note of the accomplishments and happenings of the previous year, as well as celebrates the people and donors integral to us fulfilling the work of our mission to empower discovery, stimulate learning and inspire the creation of knowledge by connecting students, faculty, researchers and scholars to dynamic data, information and resources.

Questions? Request a print copy? E-mail melissa.norris@uc.edu.

Happy Reading!

Edith Starbuck Named Distinguished Librarian of the Year at the Midwest Chapter of the Medical Library Association

edith starbuck

Edith Starbuck, information services librarian in the Donald C. Harrison Health Sciences Library, was presented with the 2019 Distinguished Librarian of the Year Award at the Midwest Chapter of the Medical Library Association’s Annual Meeting held October 4-7 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 

The award is publicized and nominations solicited annually from chapter members. Criteria used to evaluate nominees on meaningful and measurable service to the chapter may include leadership, advocacy, scholarship, research, publications, teaching, mentoring, outreach and professional activities. Edith has been a member of the chapter since 1993, serving continuously on committees since 2015 including Co-Chair of the 2018 Ohio Program Planning Committee, Recording Secretary and the Government Relations Committee. Her most recent contribution, and the one in which she was given the award, is taking the lead in establishing an annual scholarship fundraiser and committee.

In 2015 while serving as Awards and Scholarships Committee Chair, Edith learned that the chapter budget had taken a severe hit and funds to adequately support scholarships and awards were lacking. After successfully lobbying the Executive Board to fund certain scholarships, Edith was charged with fundraising to fill the deficit. After two successful fundraising years, Edith then asked the Executive Board to make the Fundraising Committee official so it could be integrated into annual conference planning, agreeing to serve as chair for 2019. With input from committee members Edith developed committee documentation that defined committee member roles, outlined procedures, and established an annual calendar based on the conference planning calendar, thus the Fundraising Committee was made official.

Congratulations, Edith!

Arlene Johnson to Head New Collection Development Services and Engagement Department

arlene johnsonThe University of Cincinnati Libraries announce a new strategic endeavor and department aimed at creating a holistic strategy for collections and the services provided for them. Effective Oct. 1, the new department is called Collection Development Services and Engagement and is to be led by senior librarian Arlene Johnson.

In her new role, Arlene will be responsible for:

  • development of a collections development services strategy for UC Libraries.
  • oversight and day-to-day management of all UC Libraries resource sharing activities.
  • development of services and strategies for remote storage of physical collections.
  • continuation as the selector and liaison to the Romance and Arabic Languages and Literatures Department.

The goals of this new initiative and department are to create a sustainable collection development services approach by looking across all disciplines at UC Libraries, understanding OhioLINK and other nationwide and international trends in resource sharing and ensuring that long-term remote storage needs will meet and exceed users’ expectations. Over the next six months, Arlene will work collaboratively with College and Departmental Library heads, liaison/selector faculty librarians and content management faculty and staff to perform an environmental scan of current best practices, as well as national research trends and approaches, so as to identify and articulate a series of recommendations to the UC Libraries community for feedback, development and implementation.

Arlene has 19 years of service and scholarship with UC Libraries, serving previously as co-director of the Digital Scholarship Center and before that head of the Libraries’ Circulation and Multimedia Services Department.

“Arlene brings an outstanding skill-set and experiences to lead this important strategic endeavor,” said Brad Warren, associate dean of public services for UC Libraries. “Her understanding of the role of the liaison coupled with the changing landscape of scholarship and the unique needs of the academic community, make her the ideal choice to head up this new department.”

“I would like to thank Arlene for her recent work with the Digital Scholarship Center,” said Xuemao Wang, vice provost of digital scholarship and dean and university librarian. “She played an instrumental role in introducing the concept of digital humanities to both UC Libraries and to our colleagues at the university, as well as in the early establishment of the Digital Scholarship Center.”

Congratulations to Arlene on her new position and responsibilities!

Librarians James Van Mil and Hannah Stitzlein take on new roles in digital collection production and management

To meet vital digital collection production and management needs, UC librarians James Van Mil and Hannah Stitzlein have taken on new responsibilities to support digital content, collection and repository service needs for metadata, access, discovery, promotion, ingest/harvest and preservation. Working closely with Sidney Gao, digital lab coordinator, and Glen Horton, head of the development team, they will provide matrix support for content, collections, imaging, repository functional development and technology infrastructure support.

james van mil and hannah stitzlein
James Van Mil and Hannah Stitzlein

James Van Mil has a new title of digital projects and preservation librarian. In this role within the Content Services Team he is responsible for planning and implementing strategies for the life-cycle of digital content. James is a primary contact point for digital collections project management services, UC Libraries digital content strategy and assuring adherence to standards and clarity of workflow for digital preservation.

Hannah Stitzlein has a new title of metadata and repository services librarian. Hannah Stitzlein, in her first year with UC Libraries has had a primary focus on metadata, the standardized description of digital content that ensures future access and data transfer for the libraries digital collections. In concert with metadata analysis and application, Hannah will now begin to provide repository services to further promote use of repository content and enhance discovery of collections.

Amy Koshoffer Named to the 2019 Cohort of TRELIS Fellows

Amy Koshoffer

Amy Koshoffer, science informationist in the Geology-Mathematics-Physics Library, was named to the 2019 cohort of TRELIS Fellows. Amy will join colleagues from around the country in Washington, D.C. at a workshop designed for professional development for women educators in geospatial sciences.

Below is the press release issued by TRELIS naming Amy to the cohort. Congratulations!

_____________________________

In June 2019, the TRELIS project, Training and Retaining Leaders in STEM-Geospatial Sciences, will hold its second workshop in Washington, D.C. TRELIS is a unique model for professional development for women educators in the geospatial sciences. The program builds leadership capacity and skills to address career development, communication, conflict resolution, and work-life integration. With the name, we instill the concept of a human capital trellis or scaffold of support, and embrace the reality of nonlinear career trajectories that move sideways, take leaps, and do not follow a single upward ladder. There is significant demand for TRELIS-related knowledge and support in the geospatial sciences, reflected in part by the large pool of applicants to TRELIS events each year.

We are pleased to announce the following members of our 2019 cohort. These TRELIS Fellows will participate in a 3-day workshop that has been designed to target topics and concerns of early-career individuals and focus on envisioning and crafting leadership pathways. Immediately following the workshop, the TRELIS Fellows will continue their professional development exchanges during the UCGIS Symposium.

 

  • Clio Andris, Pennsylvania State University
  • Sara Carr, Northeastern University
  • Li (Kerry) Fang, Florida State University
  • Kelly Gleason, Portland State University
  • Melinda Kernik, University of Minnesota
  • Marynia Kolak, University of Chicago
  • Amy Koshoffer, University of Cincinnati
  • Huyen Le, Virginia Tech University
  • Samiah Moustafa, Brown University
  • Stephanie Rogers, Auburn University
  • Vanessa Rojas, State University of New York – ESF
  • Donna Selch, Stony Brook University
  • Di Shi, University of Kansas
  • Monica Stephens, University at Buffalo
  • Caixia Wang, University of Alaska at Anchorage
  • Jennifer Watts, Woods Hole Research Center

TRELIS is managed by a leadership team from the University of Maine, Hunter College, the University of Colorado, the University of Southern California, Arizona State University, Tableau Software, and the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS). It is supported with generous funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF Grant #1660400). For more information, contact Kate Beard, TRELIS PI, at the University of Maine or look for resources at www.ucgis.org/TRELIS.

Blockchain and Ohio law

 

Blockchain by Frühstück from the Noun Project

In my capacity as the University’s Records Manager, I’m on a statewide group called the Ohio Electronic Records Committee (Ohio ERC). Ohio ERC consist of professionals from Ohio’s public entities (including archivists, record managers, IT professionals, lawyers) who have an interest in electronic records. We meet quarterly, and produce resources of interest to other public employees, such as best practices tip sheets based on Ohio-specific concerns and annual workshops. It’s a great way to stay up to date with what’s happening within state government, since what is decided in Columbus can impact records management at UC.

At our last meeting, the topic of blockchain in state government came up. It turns out that there was legislation in the last General Assembly concerning blockchain. You can see information about the bill here. Blockchain is a distributed digital ledger system that is protected through cryptographic measures, and which records all changes, transactions, and modifications to the file or object in question. Blockchain’s most famous implementation is the cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. While there is a lot of tech futurist excitement about blockchain, many others caution blockchain suffers from a lack of uniform standards, and others criticize the technology’s voracious energy usage. The reason blockchain is associated with high levels of energy use is because significant computing resources are used to generate its cryptographic verification. As a result, “bitcoin mining” tends to take place in areas with the cheapest electricity. For some time, this included places with extremely cheap coal-generated electricity like China, but this may be changing as renewable sources of cheap power come online.
During the meeting, we took a look at the full text of the bill (SB 300). Something that jumped out to many of us in the room was the definition of blockchain. The bill defined it in the following manner:
“Blockchain technology” means distributed ledger technology that uses a distributed, decentralized, shared, and replicated ledger, which may be public or private, permissioned or permissionless, or driven by tokenized crypto economics or tokenless. The data on the ledger is protected with cryptography, is immutable and auditable, and provides an uncensored truth.”
As I read this, something seemed a little off – the language seemed a little too bombastic to be written by state legislators, which made me think it was likely a form of model legislation. So I did some searching, and found that indeed, the phrase “uncensored truth” was part of similar legislation introduced in at least two other states, including Arizona and Tennessee. In other words, SB300 was model legislation, though it still isn’t clear who is shopping this around to state legislators. In 2018, eighteen states had some kind of legislative activity related to blockchain.
As it turns out, SB 300 was not passed, however language pertaining to blockchain (minus some of the colorful descriptions like “uncensored truth”) was part of another bill and is now part of the Ohio Revised Code (i.e. state law). It is in the section pertaining to commercial code and electronic transactions:
“(G) “Electronic record” means a record created, generated, sent, communicated, received, or stored by electronic means. A record or contract that is secured through blockchain technology is considered to be in an electronic form and to be an electronic record.
(H) “Electronic signature” means an electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record . A signature that is secured through blockchain technology is considered to be in an electronic form and to be an electronic signature.”
Incidentally, earlier this month, a top aide of Governor Kasich (who recently left office due to term-limits) reportedly left state government “to work for a Cleveland tech company that’s developing ways to use blockchain to store and record government records.” It seems likely that we’re going to start hearing a lot more about blockchain in Ohio soon.