The role of a data librarian in academic and research libraries

Authors : Isaac K. Ohaji, Brenda Chawner, Pak Yoong

Introduction

This paper presents a data librarian role blueprint (the blueprint) in order to facilitate an understanding of the academic and research librarian’s role in research data management and e-research.

Method

The study employed a qualitative ase research approach to investigate the dimensions of the role of a data librarian in New Zealand research organizations, using semi-structured interviews as the main data collection instrument.

Analysis

A data analysis spiral was used to analyse the interview data, with the addition of a job analysis framework to organize the role performance components of a data librarian.

Results

The influencing factors, performance components and training needs for a data librarian role form the basis of the blueprint.

Conclusions

The findings which are reflected in the blueprint provide a conceptual understanding of the data librarian role which may be used to inform and enhance practice, or to develop relevant education and training programmes.

URL : http://informationr.net/ir/24-4/paper844.html

Open Access+ Service: reframing library support to take research outputs to non-academic audiences

Author: Scott Taylor

The University of Manchester Library has established a key role in facilitating scholarly discourse through its mediated open access (OA) services, but has little track record in intentionally taking OA research outputs to non-academic audiences.

This article outlines recent exploratory steps the Library has taken to convince researchers to fully exploit this part of the scholarly communication chain. Driving developments within this service category is a belief that despite the recent rise in OA, the full public benefit of research outputs is often not being realized as many papers are written in inaccessibly technical language.

Recognizing our unique position to help authors reach broader audiences with simpler expressions of their work, we have evolved our existing managed OA services to systematically share plain-English summaries of OA papers via Twitter.

In parallel, we have taken steps to ensure that our commercial analytics tools work harder to identify and reach the networked communities that form around academic disciplines in the hope that these simpler expressions of research will be more likely to diffuse beyond these networks.

URL : Open Access+ Service: reframing library support to take research outputs to non-academic audiences

DOI : http://doi.org/10.1629/uksg.499

Understanding researcher needs and raising the profile of library research support

Authors : Colin Nickels, Hilary Davis

Researchers at North Carolina State University expect little to no difficulty in discerning how their Library can support their work. At the same time, librarians repeatedly find that researchers are unaware of what our Library has to offer.

Within this context, we embarked on a two-year study to help inform the development of outreach strategies to enable new research engagement opportunities that will scale and, at the same time, help us transform our model of research support strategies and engagement.

We interviewed both librarians and researchers to gain an understanding of researcher needs from both perspectives. The results of the interviews provided a solid grounding for building our awareness of researchers’ behaviors, expectations and workflows as well as presenting a unique picture of both unmet and unarticulated needs.

In this article we summarize our results with a specific focus on findings from the researcher interviews. We share our recommendations for evolving library research support and enhancing outreach strategies to provide an easier starting point for different types of researchers to discover relevant research assets provided by libraries such as ours.

DOI : http://doi.org/10.1629/uksg.493

Ouverture des données de la recherche : de la vision politique aux pratiques des chercheurs

Auteur/Author : Violaine Rebouillat

Cette thèse s’intéresse aux données de la recherche, dans un contexte d’incitation croissante à leur ouverture. Les données de la recherche sont des informations collectées par les scientifiques dans la perspective d’être utilisées comme preuves d’une théorie scientifique.

Il s’agit d’une notion complexe à définir, car contextuelle. Depuis les années 2000, le libre accès aux données occupe une place de plus en plus stratégique dans les politiques de recherche. Ces enjeux ont été relayés par des professions intermédiaires, qui ont développé des services dédiés, destinés à accompagner les chercheurs dans l’application des recommandations de gestion et d’ouverture.

La thèse interroge le lien entre idéologie de l’ouverture et pratiques de recherche. Quelles formes de gestion et de partage des données existent dans les communautés de recherche et par quoi sont-elles motivées ? Quelle place les chercheurs accordent-ils à l’offre de services issue des politiques de gestion et d’ouverture des données ?

Pour tenter d’y répondre, 57 entretiens ont été réalisés avec des chercheurs de l’Université de Strasbourg dans différentes disciplines. L’enquête révèle une très grande variété de pratiques de gestion et de partage de données. Un des points mis en évidence est que, dans la logique scientifique, le partage des données répond un besoin.

Il fait partie intégrante de la stratégie du chercheur, dont l’objectif est avant tout de préserver ses intérêts professionnels. Les données s’inscrivent donc dans un cycle de crédibilité, qui leur confère à la fois une valeur d’usage (pour la production de nouvelles publications) et une valeur d’échange (en tant que monnaie d’échange dans le cadre de collaborations avec des partenaires).

L’enquête montre également que les services développés dans un contexte d’ouverture des données correspondent pour une faible partie à ceux qu’utilisent les chercheurs.

L’une des hypothèses émises est que l’offre de services arrive trop tôt pour rencontrer les besoins des chercheurs. L’évaluation et la reconnaissance des activités scientifiques étant principalement fondées sur la publication d’articles et d’ouvrages, la gestion et l’ouverture des données ne sont pas considérées comme prioritaires par les chercheurs.

La seconde hypothèse avancée est que les services d’ouverture des données sont proposés par des acteurs relativement éloignés des communautés de recherche. Les chercheurs sont davantage influencés par des réseaux spécifiques à leurs champs de recherche (revues, infrastructures…).

Ces résultats invitent finalement à reconsidérer la question de la médiation dans l’ouverture des données scientifiques.

URL : https://tel.archives-ouvertes.fr/tel-02447653

Identifying and Implementing Relevant Research Data Management Services for the Library at the University of Dodoma, Tanzania

Authors : Gilbert Exaud Mushi, Heila Pienaar, Martie van Deventer

Research Data Management (RDM) services are increasingly becoming a subject of interest for academic and research libraries globally – this is also the case in developing countries.

The interest is motivated by a need to support research activities through data sharing and collaboration both locally and internationally. Many institutions, especially in the developed countries, have implemented RDM services to accelerate research and innovation through e-Research but extensive RDM is not so common in developing countries.

In reality many African universities and research institutions are yet to implement the most basic of data management services. We believe that the absence of political will and national government mandates on data management often hold back the development and implementation of RDM services. Similarly, research funding agencies are not yet applying sufficient pressure to ensure that Africa complies with the requirement to deposit research data in trusted repositories.

While the context was acknowledged the University of Dodoma library staff realized that it is urgent to prepare for the inevitable – the time when RDM will be a requirement for research funding support.

This paper presents the results of research conducted at the University of Dodoma, Tanzania. The purpose of the research was to identify and report on relevant RDM services that need to be implemented so that researchers and university management could collaborate and make our research data accessible to the international community.

This paper presents findings on important issues for consideration when planning to develop and implement RDM services at a developing country academic institution. The paper also mentions the requirements for the sustainability of these initiatives.

URL : Identifying and Implementing Relevant Research Data Management Services for the Library at the University of Dodoma, Tanzania

DOI : http://doi.org/10.5334/dsj-2020-001

Resurfacing Historical Scientific Data: A Case Study Involving Fruit Breeding Data

Authors : Shannon L. Farrell, Lois G. Hendrickson, Kristen L. Mastel, Katherine Adina Allen, Julia A. Kelly

Objective

The objective of this paper is to illustrate the importance and complexities of working with historical analog data that exists on university campuses. Using a case study of fruit breeding data, we highlight issues and opportunities for librarians to help preserve and increase access to potentially valuable data sets.

Methods

We worked in conjunction with researchers to inventory, describe, and increase access to a large, 100-year-old data set of analog fruit breeding data. This involved creating a spreadsheet to capture metadata about each data set, identifying data sets at risk for loss, and digitizing select items for deposit in our institutional repository.

Results/Discussion

We illustrate that large amounts of data exist within biological and agricultural sciences departments and labs, and how past practices of data collection, record keeping, storage, and management have hindered data reuse.

We demonstrate that librarians have a role in collaborating with researchers and providing direction in how to preserve analog data and make it available for reuse. This work may provide guidance for other science librarians pursing similar projects.

Conclusions

This case study demonstrates how science librarians can build or strengthen their role in managing and providing access to analog data by combining their data management skills with researchers’ needs to recover and reuse data.

URL : Resurfacing Historical Scientific Data: A Case Study Involving Fruit Breeding Data

DOI : https://doi.org/10.7191/jeslib.2019.1171