Connecting with Data: First Steps Toward an Emerging Area of Library Service

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The library profession is constantly changing in response to technology and our users’ needs.Recently, academic libraries have begun to confront the profound impact of cyber-infrastructure,which results in born-digital data sets that are rapidly growing in number, size, and complexity.These data sets represent new challenges for librarians. This paper describes how one librarian began to engage data producers and collections.The author found that this new service required brushing up on old skills and acquiring new skills as well. Identifying and assessing needs for data services was similar to liaison roles previously performed. However, the data services often require framing for a non-library audience (i.e. explaining how domain knowledge of the library sciences applies to the given situation.) Selecting appropriate tools for the data interviews and partnerships required a familiar process of learning tools and applying them. Forming partnerships with faculty and other librarians is an essential tool of librarianship as a whole, and is particularly important to data engagement. On the other hand, creating infrastructure or collaborating to improve infrastructure takes a systems librarian approach into the realm of cyber-infrastructure. Finally, library science domain knowledge is used and new skills are acquired throughout the entire process.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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