Looking for information from previous years? Check out past highlights below!
2017 marked significant Library involvement in the evolution of the research enterprise. Research data management continues to be a critical issue – both at UBC and beyond. We have participated in discussions on the UBC system-wide Research Data Management Task Force; continued work with Canadian Association of Research Libraries colleagues in the development of Portage initiatives, including the Data Management Plan (DMP) builder; and are now involved in the Tri-Agency consultations on their draft Research Data Management Policy. More locally, we have been focusing on streamlining services to researchers, supporting open scholarship, and building the research capacity of our UBC Okanagan librarians.
Digital Scholarship Services Review
In a complex and rapidly developing research landscape, it is common in academic institutions for administrative supports to evolve within allied organizational silos, including the Library, Information Technology, and Research Services offices. On the UBC Okanagan Campus, the Library, Advanced Research Computing (ARC), and Office of the Vice-Principal Research (including the Office of Research Services), work very closely to support researchers, but are currently unable to offer seamless transitions between a constantly expanding list of services.
Inspired by similar initiatives at other institutions, the Library and ARC – who collaborate very closely on Research Data Management initiatives – have been exploring the potential for a more formalized partnership that would remove barriers for researchers through the creation of a Digital Scholarship Services (DSS) unit to align and create a storefront for their respective service offerings.
Existing (or in development) researcher-facing services that could be brought together under the umbrella of DSS include:
- Research data management services, including data management planning
- Open scholarship, including support for Open Science Framework (OSF), open data, and compliance with the Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications
- Technical consultations and support for grant applications
- Copyright and author rights, including author retention of rights for deposit and publication
- Improved access to digital research infrastructure (DRI), and implementing and advancing innovative DRI technologies
- Digital asset creation (digitization) services
- Expert technical support and services, including technique- and discipline-specific ARC training
- Preservation of research outputs, including publications (cIRcle, UBC’s institutional repository) and data (ABACUS Dataverse)
- Management of academic profiles, including ORCID
- Retrieval and interpretation of traditional and alternative publication metrics
- Support for data visualization and analysis
At present a small steering group that includes representation from the Library, ARC, and the Office of the Vice-Principal Research, as well as faculty advisors from a variety of disciplines, has been assembled to help determine priorities and propose a model for streamlining these services. One proposed model would see the DSS unit organizationally located within the Library’s Centre for Scholarly Communication, though services would be provided by the Library and ARC. Referrals to the DSS storefront would be made by the Office of Research Services (ORS) and others affiliated with the Office of the Vice-Principal Research, as well as Associate Deans Research and other campus services. The one-stop shop model would ensure effective referral and follow-through. Implementation of initial steering group recommendations is anticipated to take place in 2018.
Open Scholarship Initiatives
The Library has been an active participant on the Open Science Task Force, a system-wide group tasked to provide recommendations on how to support and facilitate best practices in open science (and more generally, open scholarship) among UBC researchers, implement training of best practices in open scholarship among UBC research faculty members and students, and promote open scholarship at UBC.
As part of exploring these goals, and with the generous support of the Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President, Academic Affairs in Vancouver, a portion of one Okanagan librarian’s time will be dedicated in 2018 to strategic initiatives at UBC Okanagan that represent different aspects of open scholarship and show potential to be scaled to a system level.
Library Researcher in Residence
Our librarians are researchers in their own right, participating as investigators and collaborators on research teams. In support of these efforts, our Library hosted a Researcher in Residence event in December featuring Jane Schmidt from Ryerson University, who spoke about her experience conducting research during a study leave, the challenge of peer review for a topic that takes a critical stance and, following the publication of her article “Little Free Libraries®: Interrogating the impact of the branded book exchange“, the substantial media attention she and her research partner, Jordan Hale, received.
The day also featured speakers who discussed writing grant proposals, and a panel presentation and discussion of research collaborations. We were pleased to welcome colleagues from UBC Vancouver’s Library and Okanagan College Library to share the event with us.