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DIG 2014 Virtual Meeting Report

Nine of DIG members attended our virtual meeting on February 19, 2014.

We introduced ourselves to each other with detail information about the data services and programs that we are involved with. Each of us is providing different types of data services, for example, data reference services, data collection services, data analysis software packages and GIS training workshops, and GIS project assistance. We also had the opportunities to ask each other some questions. There are two libraries have statistical consulting services within the library to which data librarians could refer students for questions about statistical methodologies. In one library, subject specialists with solid statistical methodology background and well-trained graduate students are serving as consultants. In another library, the consulting team is composed of undergraduate students with solid statistical trainings.

Our members shared upcoming program/conference/events information, and experienced data librarians suggested organizations for new data librarians to participate:

  • 2014 ICPSR Summer Program course: “Providing Social Science Data Services: Strategies for Design and Operation” [https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/sumprog/courses/0041]: This year, the course will be taught by Bobray Bordelon, Princeton University; Jane Fry, Carleton University; and Ron Nakao, Stanford University. Many of us have been students of this course in  previous years and had a great experience.
  • IASSIST (International Association of Social Science Information Services & Technology) is a good organization for data librarians to join and participate. The website [http://www.iassistdata.org/] of the organization has resources on various data related topics, and the organization also has a peer reviewed OA journal: IASSIST Quarterly. The listserve discussion of the organization has been very active with members frequently raising questions and eagerly answering each other’s questions. Sometimes interests groups are formed directly as a result of good discussions or identified similar interests among members around a topic. 
  • APDU (Association of Public Data Users) is another social science data related organization with only institutional membership, but they offer very good informational webinars frequently.
  • NCLA (North Carolina Library Association) Government Resources Section has a great webinar series “Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian”, which offered monthly free webinars on government resources. 

We then discussed how we are going to organize our 2014 ALA Annual Meeting, and possible 2015 ACRL program.

Members suggested that for ALA Annual this year, we could have speaker(s) talk briefly and then engage all our members to have discussions. It’s not going to be a formal program, just a more focused discussion around a topic. One topic that has been identified for this year is, “how to market data management services.” The speaker(s) need not talk only about successful strategies, lessons and experiences are all valuable to share.  Please let us know if you would like to be the speaker or you have someone to suggest that we could invite.

Considering the possibility of proposing a program for 2015 ACRL Meeting, members suggested that we might want to co-sponsor a program with other ALA/ACRL sections/groups that have similar interests, for example, LPSS and BRASS. The strategy of co-sponsoring might be that we plan the session and then have other sections/groups simply endorse it. Member suggested that for this kind of bigger/formal program, we could focus more on data content, for example, international comparative of data products/collections/libraries, or some focused small data archives/libraries, for example, unique topical data archives from ICPSR, and we could even invite some vendors/producers to talk about their products. Other topics that members are interested in are established data management/curation services, for example, UCSD’s Data Curation Services and University of Virginia’s Scholar Lab. Please let us know if you have any further suggestions or ideas.

Current and future conveners could start planning now, and attend the upcoming free webinar, “Tips for ACRL 2015 Proposals,” on Tuesday, February 25, 2014 (11:00 a.m. Pacific | 12:00 p.m. Mountain | 1:00 p.m. Central time | 2:00 p.m. Eastern (60 minutes)).  The due date for submitting a proposal is May 9, 2014.