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Boston Public Library Renovations Highlighted in New York Times

boston-public-library-johnson-buildingBPL Johnson building, image © David JonesThe New York Times recently published an article about the changing nature of libraries in the US, focusing on the current renovations to the Boston Public Library (BPL) Johnson building—originally designed by Philip Johnson—to demonstrate changes being seen in libraries across the country. The Times New England bureau chief, Katharine Q. Seelye, reports that library usage has risen dramatically over the past few years, possibly due to the recession, the availability of technology and Internet access, and “because libraries have been reimagining themselves.” Notably BPL’s central library—where the Johnson building is located—experienced a 40% increase in visits from 2012 to 2013.

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ARL-SAA Digital Archives Specialist Courses at U Alberta: Early-Bird Deadline Approaching

u-alberta-rutherford-libraryU Alberta, Rutherford Library, image © Alexander AffleckTuesday, April 1, 2014, is the last day to register at early-bird rates for the Digital Archives Specialist (DAS) courses being offered by ARL and the Society of American Archivists (SAA) at University of Alberta, April 21–25. You do not need to work at an ARL library to register for the courses at this site—they are open to all librarians and archivists.

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ARL Library Assessment Forum Highlights Value of Library Spaces—Slides Online

u-tennessee-knoxville-info-commonsimage © University of TennesseeOn January 24, 2014, at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia, the ARL Statistics and Assessment program hosted an engaging Library Assessment Forum. Bob Fox, dean of libraries at the University of Louisville and chair of the ARL Statistics and Assessment Committee, discussed issues related to facilities data–collection activities. Teresa Walker, associate professor and head of learning, research, and engagement at the University of Tennessee (UT) Libraries, presented on the information commons assessment conducted at UT through the LibValue grant. Danuta Nitecki, dean of libraries and professor of information science at Drexel University, shared insights about utilizing ROI and observational data.  Steve Hiller, director of assessment and planning at the University of Washington Libraries and co-chair of the Library Assessment Conference 2014, presented the latest updates on the upcoming conference to take place in Seattle, Washington, August 4–6, 2014.

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Using ARL Statistics in Budget Justification Analysis: An Example from U Florida

peer analysis bar chart from presentation by Brian Keith“Statistical Analysis of Library Budgets” by Brian Keith (PDF)Helping ARL member library staff understand their libraries’ budgets and make the case for their libraries is an important function of the data ARL collects. Brian Keith, associate dean for administrative services and faculty affairs at the University of Florida, demonstrated this in his presentation, “Statistical Analysis of Library Budgets” (PDF), at the ARL Survey Coordinators and SPEC Liaisons Meeting on January 24, 2014, in Philadelphia.

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Minnesota Institute for Early-Career Librarians Opens to Non-MLIS Library Professionals

u-minnesota-andersen-libraryUMN Andersen LibraryThe Minnesota Institute for Early Career Librarians from Traditionally Underrepresented Groups has broadened its application requirement for the graduate degree to include degrees in relevant areas—applicants must have either an ALA-accredited degree in library/information science or a relevant advanced degree.

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Brian Schottlaender Takes Ecosystem View of Digital Preservation

brian-e-c-schottlaenderBrian E. C. SchottlaenderThe latest issue of Library Resources & Technical Services features a guest editorial by Brian E. C. Schottlaender, the Audrey Geisel university librarian at University of California, San Diego, and an ARL Board member. In “The Digital Preservation Imperative: An Ecosystem View,” Schottlaender highlights the increasingly urgent need to preserve the digital record as more and more scholarly, cultural, and governmental information is produced in digital form.

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Close the Innovation Deficit—Business, Higher Education, Scientific Organizations Urge Congress with New Video

close-the-innovation-deficit-video-screenshotClose the Innovation Deficit videoWith President Obama’s fiscal year 2015 budget proposal due next week and the appropriations season starting on Capitol Hill, a coalition of 14 business, higher education, and scientific organizations launched on February 27, 2014, a creative video that urges Congress to Close the Innovation Deficit with strong federal investments in research and higher education. The four-minute video, featuring rapidly hand-drawn images and text, can be viewed at http://www.innovationdeficit.org/.

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Mike Furlough Named HathiTrust Executive Director

mike-furloughMike Furlough, image courtesy HathiTrustHathiTrust has announced the appointment of Mike Furlough as executive director, effective May 19, 2014. Furlough is currently associate dean for research and scholarly communications at Pennsylvania State University. He has more than a dozen years of experience leading initiatives in digital scholarship, content stewardship, and scholarly communications, and has served for the last nine months as an inaugural member of HathiTrust’s Program Steering Committee.

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Fair Use Proposed by Australian Law Reform Commission

copyright-and-the-digital-economy-by-alrc-coverOn February 13, 2014, the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) issued a 478-page report on Copyright and the Digital Economy, which made a number of positive recommendations for copyright reform in Australia. A significant portion of the report focused on limitations and exceptions, including a recommendation that Australia adopt fair use (or, failing that, to revise its current fair dealing provision), noting the benefits of a flexible standard. In addition to its numerous other recommendations, the ALRC report also examined the practice of using contracts to prohibit or hinder the use of particular limitations and exceptions and recommended an express prohibition against contractual provisions that would restrict specific libraries and archives exceptions.

Below are some highlights from the ALRC report, focusing on the two issues of fair use and contracts.

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ARL-SAA Digital Archives Specialist Courses at Syracuse: Register Now

syracuse-u-carnegie-librarySyracuse University, Carnegie Library, photo Kai Brinker, © Encyclopaedia BritannicaThere are still seats available in the Digital Archives Specialist (DAS) courses being offered by ARL and the Society of American Archivists (SAA) at Syracuse University, March 10–14, 2014. You do not need to work at an ARL library to register for the courses at this site—they are open to all librarians and archivists.

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