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Research libraries “jockeying for position” when it comes to research data – LIBER2012 (1)

27 juni 2012 Gepubliceerd door Laat uw gedicht achter

Here’s a first impression from the 2012 LIBER Annual General Conference entitled “Mobilising the knowledge economy for Europe”. – by Inge Angevaare

Adam Farquhar of the British Library video-addressing the workshop of the ODE project

I think there can be no doubt that research data are part of the knowledge economy, and there were two workshops planned this wednesday morning to address issues with regard to research data: an APARSEN workshop looking at the relationship between e-infrastructures and research libraries (focussing on digital preservation), and an ODE workshop looking at “opportunities for data exchange”, which include, a.o., citability and digital curation/preservation.

Unfortunately, the APARSEN workshop (where I was to speak …) was cancelled at the last minute, but I will be posting some of my slides later on this blog. Instead I attended the ODE workshop, where many of the same issues were discussed. Attendance (some 40 out of 300 delegates) was not very high, I must say – but we are used to that in digital preservation. Topics like Europeana (access) and heritage collections tend to draw a bigger crowd of research librarians. As Martin Moyle of University College London summed it up: “Research libraries are still jockeying for position when it comes to research data.”

Martin Moyle (UCL)

Numbers got even smaller when the ODE workshop was divided up into three break-out groups. Citability attracted only 3 participants; digital curation/preservation came second with 8 (including yours truly), and all the others wanted to know about skills — which is, of course an important topic.

Ably chaired by Sabine Schrimpf of the German National Library, the curation breakout group included, a.o., Henk van der Hoogen (Maastricht), Sven Vlaeminck (Leibniz), Jan Feringa (Groningen), Kimmo Koskinen (Helsinki), yours truly and a colleague from Egypt whose name I did not get (sorry)

The break-out group on curation/preservation concluded that when it comes to data management and curation, research libraries have three basic options: a) get totally involved, as many big US libraries are doing, and also UCL in London; b) seek partnerships with data centers and or data archives, as Leiden is doing; c) or stay away from the game completely.

Sabine Schrimpf of the German National Library illustrating the "staying away completely" option

I will report extensively about how these options play out in later posts – wifi is very flaky at the conference, so you will have to bear with me. But those familiar with this blog know that all shall be revealed, even if it takes me into next week.

Coffee break for small and large librarians

This is all I've seen of Tartu so far -- from my hotel window. They are expecting sunshine later in the week, though, by which time I will have more time to enjoy it. So far it has all been about preparing power points - my own and that of a distinguished Dutch colleague.









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