Tag Archives: conferences

They’re letting me talk in public again

18 Oct

I’ve actually got a couple of speaking gigs on the horizon, and it feels like it’s been a little while.

On November 4, I’ll be at NYLA’s annual conference, where the CUNY Graduate Center’s Jill Ciracella and I will be giving a talk on “Walking the Open Access Walk“. We’ll be covering the recent big events in the OA world, and then leading some facilitated discussion on what libraryfolk need to be doing right now to promote and embrace OA.

And then on December 2, my colleague Aliqae Geraci and I will be on a panel discussing power, labor, and archives at the ACRL/NY 2016 Symposium: Money and Power. Our focus is, “Documenting dispute: Who is preserving the record of public sector collective bargaining?” and it’ll touch on our research into state-level collections of CBAs, but also look more broadly at the place of labor libraries in supporting labor communities and action.

I’m excited to be out speaking again, and very excited to be a part of two excellent programs. So check ’em out.

 

To Collect and Preserve: The State of State-Level CBA Collections in the U.S.

6 May

If you’re going to be at Fighting Inequality: the Joint Conference of the Labor and Working-Class History Association and the Working-Class Studies Association or the SLA Annual Conference, be sure to check out Aliqae Geraci and I presenting on the research project that we’ve been working on for the last two years! (Seriously, we contacted hundreds of state agencies for this thing. We were not messing around at all, here.)

We’ll be presenting the research in different ways to the two very different audiences, so here are both write-ups.

For LAWCHA/WCSA:

Battles over public sector collective bargaining rights have played out on the news, in legislative sessions, and through public demonstration. However, these public policy debates often occur without ready public access to the CBAs that trace and describe the working conditions and employment relationships in dispute. Inspired by Cornell University’s digital collection of New York State CBAs, and researchers seeking similar state collections, the authors conducted a national survey of each state’s CBA collection policies, mapping regulations and collections, and identifying historical scope and degree of public accessibility. The survey revealed dramatic variation across states, requiring deeper investigation of the impact of information gaps on working class participation in public discourse. The authors discuss potential avenues for information policy reform, and outline best practices for state agencies and labor organizations to partner with libraries to create accessible collections that comprehensively document public sector collective bargaining.

And for SLA:

Through collaboration with the New York State Public Employment Relations Board, Cornell University’s Martin P. Catherwood Library has established a collection of public sector collective bargaining agreements (CBAs), including 7,000 held in their open access digital repository, DigitalCommons@ILR. ILR Research Librarian Aliqae Geraci and Digital Projects Coordinator Jim DelRosso will present their preliminary research findings of a 50-state survey identifying and evaluating similar state-level collections of public sector CBAs, and discuss standards and best practices for libraries seeking to develop publicly accessible collections in partnership with government agencies.

Program Takeaways

  1. Participants will be briefed on key issues surrounding public sector labor relations in the United States in order to interpret the findings of the state-level survey of collective bargaining agreement collections and assess their comprehensiveness and accessibility.
  2. Participants will map existing state-level print and digital CBA collections in order to strategically identify potential partnerships and collaborative opportunities between libraries, labor unions, and government bodies.

So if you’re going to be at LAWCHA/WCSA in Washington, DC at the end of May, or at SLA in June, please join us! We promise you’ll learn something.

There’s still time to register for Not the CIA: Competitive Intelligence and Analysis in the Real World

6 Mar

Folks, there’s still time to sign up for Not the CIA: Competitive Intelligence and Analysis in the Real World, the spring conference of the Upstate New York Chapter of SLA.

Not only will the conference be covering great material that’s rarely emphasized in a library context, but it’ll also be held at the Corning Museum of Glass, which is pretty damned spectacular.

Details and the link to the registration form can be found here. Hope to see you there!

A terrible keynote, but a very solid DrupalCamp

6 Dec

On Monday, I attended DrupalCamp here at Cornell. Overall, the event was great. Though I was hindered by a nasty cold that had set in over Thanksgiving break, the sessions I attended were excellent: one talked about web accessibility, providing both historical and legal context and then providing practical advice for using the tools of responsive web design to create accessible sites. Another talked about preparing for Drupal, and again gave an excellent overview of what was involved in the creation of a Drupal site before digging into the pragmatic needs of such an endeavor. Wonderful stuff, and just the sort of thing that got me to sign up in the first place.

The keynote, sadly, was another story. For whatever reason, the organizers gave over this important task to a representative of one of the vendors, and it was disastrous. I documented this on Twitter:

(NOTE: I am not sure why WordPress won’t let me embed the Storify. I’ve tried several times and no longer care.)

Like I said, the rest of the event was excellent. In fact, I’m willing to assume at this point that the speaker — or more likely, his employer Acquia — promised the organizers a very different speech. But the “you need to think like a business!” rhetoric we got was wholly inappropriate; whether or not you think that mindset has any validity*, it’s certainly not new thinking. We’ve been living it for as long as I’ve been working in academic libraries, and playing buzzword bingo*** with us isn’t inspirational, it’s insulting.

I went to DrupalCamp to get a bit more insight into using Drupal; I’m not a developer, but I wanted a better context for working with the developers on several upcoming projects. I got that, and would attend similar events in the future. I also got a good story out of it, so all in all I’d call the event a success.

——-

* Note: I don’t. It’s better served in another post, but the short version is that academic institutions aren’t businesses, and the principles that currently drive business in Western society don’t even produce successful businesses, so we can’t expect them to produce a viable academy. Not to say there aren’t things that can be learned from other sectors and spheres, but we can’t expect success by pretending that they aren’t other sectors and spheres.**

** Actually, that might be my whole post on the topic. We’ll see.

*** I almost shouted “BINGO!” when he put up the “THE FUTURE IS AGILE!” slide, though to be fair that might be the free square in the middle of the board.

There’s still time to register for The Librarian’s Toolbox: Reopened!

28 Oct

Just what it says in the title, folks: registration is still open for The Librarian’s Toolbox: Reopened!, the fall conference of the Upstate New York Chapter of SLA.  We’ve got some excellent presentations and posters lined up, and I think it’s going to be a helluva good day for libraryfolk who attend. It’s also being held at the Craftsman Inn in Fayettesville, NY, just outside of Syracuse, and that’s a great venue.

Details and the link to the registration form can be found here. Hope to see you there!

NYLA: Repositories and Open Access

30 Sep

Last week, I got to go to my first New York Library Association conference, and it was a blast. As I mentioned previously, Amy Buckland and I gave our workshop on digital repository strategies and practice. It’s a workshop I love, because no matter how many times we’ve given it it’s never the same: Amy and I always have new experiences to relate, and the groups we work with are always so different that their questions and insights are new and revelatory each time.

Items of note this go-round: it was the first time that just about everyone in the room seemed to have adequate or nigh-adequate staffing for their repository projects — hallelujah! — and the folks running Digital Commons @Brockport are doing some amazing things.

I also had the honor of sitting on a panel with Amy and Jenica Rogers, talking about Open Access in scholarly publishing. We went with a simple format: we put what we hoped would be a provocative statement up on a slide, and then got a discussion going with the audience about it. There were six statements in total, and if you read Jenica’s blog*, you’ve likely seen them already. I’ll reproduce them here because they got great discussion at NYLA, and great discussion on her blog, and I’m curious to see if we can pull off a great discussion trifecta. Or hat-trick.  Or similar sports metaphor for something happening three times. In any case, here they are:

  1. A child born today will use nothing but open access materials for research in college.

  2. Textbook companies will go out of business as faculty realize they can write, compile, and publish their own customized open course texts.

  3. Future discussions of the quality of library collections will focus not on the collections a library owns, but on the collections a library creates.

  4. The adoption of open access collections will obviate proprietary discovery layers.

  5. It is irresponsible for federally-funded researchers not to make their work available in an open format.

  6. True change in the scholarly publishing system will come from smaller liberal arts colleges, and not the big guys.

Oh, and Amy provided what’s probably the best opening slide ever.

So, discuss in the comments if you have a mind to, or head over to Jenica’s and jump in the discussion there. In any case, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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* And if you don’t, why the hell not?

2nd Call for Proposals, UNYSLA Fall Meeting, 11/8/2013 in Syracuse

26 Aug

Please submit your proposals, folks! The deadline in September 3.

The Upstate Chapter of the Special Libraries Association invites you to submit a proposal for our fall conference that will be held in Syracuse on Friday, November 8, 2013.   We are reprising one of our most successful conferences in the past few years – The Librarian’s Toolbox:  Reopened!

We are inviting proposals for presentations of either 15 or 30 minutes, or posters, showcasing innovative or cutting edge tools: software, hardware, services or techniques.

Examples of topics might include software, strategies or practices you have developed or worked with that support your colleagues or constituents.  This could include:

·      Productivity software

·      Collaborative tools

·      Innovative technique

In your proposal, please provide the following:

·      Title of proposal

·      Indicate whether this is a poster or a 15 or 30 minute presentation

·      Abstract or brief description of about 100-300 words

·      Your name, title, and affiliation (employer or school)

·      Contact information (email address)

Submission of proposals:

Please submit your proposal via our web form no later than September 3, 2013.  Selected presenters will be notified no later than September 9, 2013 (the date registration opens).

See you in November!

Linda, UNYSLA President-Elect, on behalf of the UNYSLA Board