Tag Archives: Ashley Moye

New Year, New Resources for Library Managers

With 2016 now upon us, it seemed like a great time to scan the blogosphere and see what new posts and resources are out there that might help library managers increase both their own and their team’s effectiveness in the new year!

Training and Professional Development

Tami Schiller offers a few tips on how to make 2016 a year of professional development and highlights some new and different approaches to learning. Incorporate these tips into your new year, not only for your own growth, but for your employees as well.  Her third tip, exploring at least one new training method this year with a pilot group, is a great opportunity for the library as a whole – pick a single topic relevant to their work and get moving.  Tami provides links to additional posts detailing methods such as microlearning, formative assessment and blended learning.

Inspiration

Need some quick and easy daily inspiration?  Click over to Founder Mantras for your daily dose of mantras, quotes and words to live by for founders, by founders.  You can even add your own mantra to the list.  For instance, on January 11th, Alex Blumberg of Gimlet Media reminds us that “The first draft always sucks.”

Written Communication

Speaking of first drafts, how often are you charged with creating “official communication” from the library?  Do you delegate this task or do you take it on yourself? And how do you make sure that communications coming out of your library resonate, bringing the essence of your library to life through text?  Here’s some tips from Ryan LeClaire on writing with your brand’s voice that may help you do just that.  A key piece of this, especially for libraries, is understanding your customers themselves – telling them what they want to hear in a way that reaches them.  Having a relationship with your patron base, and capitalizing on the things you’ve learned about your patrons through this relationship is integral to your success!

Negotiating Contracts

We all know that walking away from a contract negotiation with a vendor is not always a realistic option in the library world, which can often make you feel as though you’re powerless to affect the final outcome. However, Susannah Tredwell offers librarians some advice on approaching negotiations you can’t walk away from, while still getting a result you’re happy with.  With tangible questions to ask yourself in preparation, important amendments you may be able to incorporate into your deal, and links to further reading, this is a great resource to start your 2016 negotiations off on the right foot!

Faculty Orientation

Academic law libraries have regular influxes of new students, so year after year, student orientation remains a hot topic. However, in this case, here’s some advice on something a little different – new faculty orientation. Tena Long Golding offers a more interactive spin on the traditional talking head presentations by librarians, especially for dry topics such a syllabi and policy statements. Their group created a video of student responses to questions such as “What one word describes a great professor?” and “What advice would you give a new professor.”  After the video, conversation is continued using the natural segue to key elements on a course syllabus. In her own words, “What used to be a session of reading through the requirements is now more of an open discussion on creative ways to communicate expectations and engage with our students.”

Collaboration

Let’s finish things out with a few links devoted to collaboration. We can all sing the praises of collaboration – coming together often leads to new ideas, better ways of doing things, shared workloads and more. But what about the darker side of collaboration?  Nick Milton recently wrote a piece stating that “Not all collaboration is good – some of it is a waste of time or creator of unneeded confusion.”  To support this, he links to a recent article in the Harvard Business Review which points out that usually only a handful of employees carry the full collaborative load and as a result become overloaded and disengaged.  As managers, you have the ability to identify overloaded collaborators and try to shift their burdens and find ways to reward them for their efforts.  Also, when assigning collaborative projects and roles, don’t forget that increased headcount on a project doesn’t necessarily give you greater returns. Need proof? Casey Flaherty makes some great points in his recent post that deserve a closer look. He says it best in his post tagline “Nine women can’t make a baby in one month.”

~Ashley Moye~

TSLL TechScans is “a blog to share the latest trends and technology tools for technical services law librarians.”  This content was originally posted on TSLL TechScans and is reprinted here with permission.

Leave a comment

Filed under Library

Goverment Publications in the Digital World: Enhancements, Changes, Partnerships and More

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Thomas and Congress.gov

As THOMAS works its way towards its retirement, a wide variety of enhancements are being made to congress.gov in order to make the transition between resources as seamless and painless as possible for users. The latest set of enhancements includes a new quick search for legislation, the Congressional Record Index and the history of bills from the Congressional Record Index, featuring search functionality similar to the Advanced Legislation search provided on THOMAS. To view a complete round-up of the latest enhancements to the congress.gov site, as well as a refresher on earlier enhancements you may have missed throughout the year, check out the Library of Congress blog.

United States Government Publishing Office (GPO)

GPO is the first federal agency to become a member of the Technical Report Archive & Image Library (TRAIL). For those not familiar with TRAIL – it is made up of approximately three dozen member groups, mainly Federal depository libraries, and works to provide discoverable, permanent and unrestricted access to U.S. Government agency technical reports. Obviously these two groups share a number of common goals, and the stage is set for some major collaboration. To learn more about this partnership or TRAIL itself, start out with the official press release.

Circular A-130 & The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB)

The public comment period recently closed on Circular A-130, “Managing Information in Strategic Decision Making”. This document establishes policies for the management of Federal information resources, and incidentally, the document hasn’t been updated in fifteen years.

Imagine how much statutory requirements and technological capabilities have expanded and changed since 2000. At this point, our nation needs guidelines and policies to ensure the protection of our privacy and maximize their ability to harness the power of today’s technology. In early December, the Director of the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Shaun Donovan, delivered remarks at the Federal Privacy Summit and discussed the driving forces behind revising Circular A-130. “As technology and threats evolve, so must our policies.  In order to meet today’s complex challenges, we must continue to double down on this Administration’s broad strategy to enhance privacy practices and fundamentally overhaul information security practices, policies, and governance.”

The new A-130 centralizes a wide range of policy updates on acquisitions, cybersecurity, information governance, records management, open data, and privacy, replaces a federated procurement approach with more directed guidance and ensured timeliness in IT acquisitions, delineates the responsibilities of various departments when it comes to securing our federal systems, and mandates that government data that is public facing be accessible, discoverable and of usable quality.

While the public comment period is closed, rest assured that the American Association of Law Libraries did weigh in on the comments. Take a look at what they had to say here and here. Currently, the OMB is analyzing all submitted feedback and revising the policy as necessary.  Stay tuned in the coming months for the revised version of the policy as well as an opportunity to comment on Circular A-108, which should help agencies promote transparency and implement the Privacy Act.

~Ashley Moye~

TSLL TechScans is “a blog to share the latest trends and technology tools for technical services law librarians.”  This content was originally posted on TSLL TechScans and is reprinted here with permission.

Leave a comment

Filed under Library

Harvard Law Library “Frees the Law” with Their New Digitization Project

From http://librarylab.law.harvard.edu/projects/free-the-law

 

Has anyone not heard at least a whisper about Harvard’s new “Free the Law” initiative at this point? It’s been making its way through the blogosphere since it hit the news in late October…

For those who may not know, the project is devoted to making all U.S. case law freely accessible online and involves some serious heavy lifting on the digitization end as well as additional steps behind the scenes that will make the data truly accessible via search. Harvard Law School Library and Ravel Law, a legal research and analytics company, are joining forces on this project, and certain laws should be online as early as November.

Here’s a round-up of recent articles so you can learn more at your leisure…

On October 28th, the New York Times led the pack both in print and online, announcing that “in a digital-age sacrifice intended to serve grand intentions, the Harvard librarians are slicing off the spines of all but the rarest volumes and feeding some 40 million pages through a high-speed scanner. They are taking this once unthinkable step to create a complete, searchable database of American case law that will be offered free on the Internet, allowing instant retrieval of vital records that usually must be paid for.”

And librarians throughout the nation found themselves simultaneously gasping at the deliberate destruction and applauding the sincere motivations behind the madness…

The initiative was also announced online in Harvard Law Today – this posting includes Harvard Law School’s video “Announcing Free the Law.”  Their video documents the process and features interviews with Daniel Lewis, founder of Ravel Law, and Jonathan Zittrain, Harvard Law Library Director and Law Professor.

Next up – the inimitable Jean P. O’Grady at Dewey B. Strategic had an opportunity to speak with Daniel Lewis, founder of Ravel Law, and fleshes out the basics with additional details which are definitely of interest to librarians, such as “How does this project differ from the caselaw available on Google Scholar.

Want to hear from Jonathan Zittrain of the Harvard Law Library?  Robert Ambrogi at Law Sites spoke to him and after their conversation added some additional notes to his initial posting, such as the fact that “Ravel will create an application programming interface (API) so that nonprofits can write apps and plug into the ecosystem of these cases, to create their own portal into the database.”

Ambrogi then spoke to Daniel Lewis and wrote a follow-up post with more exclusive tidbits about the project, including the conversations between Lewis and Zittrain that sparked “Free the Law” started two years ago over frozen yogurt.

Within forty-eight hours of the announcement, a range of other outlets had begun picking up the buzz, with the Christian Science Monitor speculating on how this project may change legal practices by leveling the field and allowing improved access to justice. And even straight techie sites like Techdirt were praising this as a useful and worthwhile project.

Where will this project lead, and what lasting impacts will it have?  Only time will tell.  Until then, I’ve got nothing but applause for Ravel and the Harvard Law librarians’ dedication, bravery and initiative.

~Ashley Moye~

TSLL TechScans is “a blog to share the latest trends and technology tools for technical services law librarians.”  This content was originally posted on TSLL TechScans and is reprinted here with permission.

Leave a comment

Filed under Books & Stuff, Library

Interested in Animal Law?

Check out our Animal Law LibGuide, which assists researchers interested in studying animal law and related subjects, such as property law, animal rights and animal welfare and protection. Listed within this guide are suggestions for resources which will assist in locating relevant case law, statutes, regulations, articles, news, and books. Also listed are links to resources that are freely available online that researchers in animal law may find of interest.

Also Introducing a New Resource in the HeinOnline Database Collection – Animal Studies: Law, Welfare and Rights

Students, staff and faculty now have access to an Animal Studies database within HeinOnline, consisting of more than 650 titles and nearly 300,000 pages related to animal law. Animal Studies: Law, Welfare, and Rights aims to establish the foundational laws pertaining to animals and follow the evolution of these rights throughout the years, and contains works on the basic rights of animals, moral responsibility, evolution of animal rights, higher law rights for animals, animal rights movement, and wildlife protection. It includes everything from philosophical books published in the 1800’s to videos, periodicals, and brochures, and features materials from the Animal Legal Defense Fund and the Animal Welfare Institute.

This HeinOnline collection is also directly accessible through the Animal Law LibGuide, under the “Online Resources: Animal Issues” tab.

To browse other legal research guides or to receive email alerts when guides of interest to you are published, click here.  And, as always, contact the LUX desk if you have any questions or need any assistance!

~Susan Catterall & Ashley Moye~

Leave a comment

Filed under electronic resources, Libguides, Library

In a Tech-Saturated World, Don’t Forget the Importance of the Human Element…

Source: Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository

It seems like every time I turn around, there’s a new task that can now be automated or outsourced or a new program that can do what I do accurately and in half the time. Sometimes it’s easy, as a technical services librarian, to get a little concerned about my job security. What place DO we have and what role CAN we serve when computers and technology keep on finding ways to do our jobs better and faster?

This concern isn’t limited to technical services librarians, of course. I think we can all find similar feelings within ourselves, regardless of our positions or our industries. We may even feel it in our personal lives.

So 3 Geeks and a Law Blog hit the nail on the head with their recent post, What Are Humans Good for… in Legal Services?, and I was reminded that there’s no need to fear. I can do something a computer can’t do – and that’s be a human. I can relate to other humans in a way technology never can, meaning I can more effectively generate ideas, solve problems, strategize, persuade, argue, tell stories, and most importantly, collaborate with others.

Other recent posts have backed up this idea:

Robert Oaks, Chief Library and Records Officer for Latham & Watkins LLP, states “It’s not about the library. It’s about the relationship the librarian has with those who do or could benefit from the library.” View the library as a service, not a location, and shift your perspective and role to be more proactive and prescriptive. You know who finds it challenging to be proactive and prescriptive? That’s right. Computers.

A recent survey of faculty and academic librarians done by the Library Journal and Gale shows that there’s a disconnect between faculty and librarians, and suggests that you need to ingrain the library in campus culture, actively participate in student education, and seek out opportunities for engagement with teaching faculty. You know who doesn’t oftentimes seek out opportunities to further engagement with others?  Technology.

The library sector is changing under out feet, and this blog post, by Rebecca Jones, offers 4 ideas to “rewire” our thinking.  My favorite one is “The Intelligent Organization of People is Key to Success.”  Again – it’s not the power of our technology and our ‘stuff’ that defines our success as librarians.  It’s the ways in which the human dimension works that defines a library’s success.

Want ways to help the human component, even while leveraging the best parts of connecting through increased technology?  Check out these tips to improve collaboration among remote teams, by Mike Gilronan, where he lists five clear cut to-dos.

And have you realized that technology alone will not make us more efficient and can, at times, make us less focused and therefore less efficient?  Technology can actually make us less useful.  Collaboration is what leads to efficiency, and this posting by Mark Hunter reminds us that fostering collaboration requires both a shift in culture and in the way we do things.

And finally, here’s an interesting combination of out-sourcing and in-sourcing that gave a future-proof strategy to one law firm.  “People get the answers they need, better and faster.” It’s not outsourcing to machines, but outsourcing to expert PEOPLE.  Again, people are the key to successfully serving others.  Not just the technology.

References:

~Ashley Moye~

TSLL TechScans is “a blog to share the latest trends and technology tools for technical services law librarians.”  This content was originally posted on TSLL TechScans and is reprinted here with permission.

Leave a comment

Filed under Books & Stuff, Library