and awareness of new processes and services to develop for assisting faculty researchers. In this enterprise of response, however, it is early days yet. While at some institutions, research data assessment activities are well underway, at others the value of data as a long-term and reusable asset, the management of which is worthwhile funding, still has traction to gain among high-level university administrators, who have a vested interest in continuing to receive significant research funds. Questions such as how institutions will curate research data in a centralized way, make them discoverable, findable, and usable, and ensure long-term preservation and access will depend much on identifying relevant stakeholders, arriving at a common ground and obtaining buy-in (which includes stakeholder participation in the process and not hand waving), and forging the right working relationships to get things done. As librarians work increasingly across units and departments both within and beyond their libraries, it will be energizing for the profession to see what models for agility, collaboration, communication, program development, process management, and workflow design come into play that can be adapted for local environ- ments. Foremost, what results externally from this enterprise, in terms of innovative user services, must be evident and of benefit to the faculty and students whom academic libraries serve, especially if we want to foster “new users of data.” As Meredith Farkas notes in a posting to her blog, Information Wants to Be Free, “We need to understand how they [our patrons] do research, how they use our current resources, why some of them don’t use the library, and what they want from the library that they’re not currently getting.”11 When this understanding is achieved, the “last mile” will be completed. RLI 274 16 Joining in the Enterprise of Response in the Wake of the NSF Requirement ( C O N T I N U E D ) FEBRUARY 2011 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A BIMONTHLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC
Previous Page Next Page