Category: Public (page 1 of 4)

University Archives Open House: Monday, May 2, 2-4 p.m.

You are invited to see material from the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center Archival Program, the Ohio Congressional Archives and The Ohio State University Archives. The collections are located in the Book Depository and visitors will also be taken through the high-density stack area, which are three stories tall (think “Raiders of the Lost Ark”). Located at 2700 Kenny Road, this will only be available Monday, May 2 from 2 – 4 p.m.

Items on display will include:

  • From the University Archives: Come see who the first students were who attended OSU; Get a glimpse of how football was played in the 1930s; find out what Brutus Buckeye looked like in the early years; and much, much more.
  • From the Ohio Congressional Archives: Come hold a piece of the booster rocket from John Glenn’s Friendship 7 spaceflight in 1962; see a shirt he wore during his return to space in 1998, along with the email he received from President Bill Clinton while aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery; read documents pertaining to the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and other really cool stuff.
  • From the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center Archival Program: See an original letter signed by Amelia Earhart; thumb through photo albums from Byrd’s first expedition to Antarctica in 1928; see the diary Byrd kept during his historic flight over the North Pole in 1926; and view many other amazing items that document the history of polar exploration.



From the Director: “Drinking from the Fire Hose”

nn2Vice Provost and Director of University Libraries Damon Jaggars offers up his first blog post, sharing experiences from the first four weeks on the job, and his thoughts on the broad missions of an academic library.

From the Director – February 29, 2016 – Drinking From The Fire Hose

Drinking from the fire hose. That is what I’ve been doing for the past month, my first here at The Ohio State University. It has been whirlwind of meetings, receptions, and other opportunities to meet new colleagues inside and outside of the Libraries – a process organized to help me assemble an understanding of how Ohio State is structured, how decisions are made, and to foster the relationships important to our collective future success.

Over the past four weeks, I’ve met with 14 university administrators, the Office of Academic Affairs Leadership team, the Council of Deans, the Council on Distance Education, Libraries, and Information Technology (DELIT), Faculty Advisory Council, Staff Advisory Council, the Director of the Center for Library Initiatives at the CIC, and multiple current and prospective donors, among others. And last Friday, I began my internal listening tour with a morning of meetings with colleagues at the Library Tech Center. The calendar for March is just as crowded, if not more so.

Notable during my meetings with stakeholders from outside of the Libraries, I’ve been asked several times for my views “on the future of the Libraries at OSU” or something thereabouts. I’m sure many of you have been confronted with similar questions from time to time, but I thought it might be useful to share the outlines of how I’m answering such questions as I interact with our colleagues across campus and beyond.

I usually begin by offering what I consider to be the three broad missions of an academic research library as context: (1) to support faculty teaching, student learning, and community outreach; (2) to support research and the creation of new knowledge; and (3) to selectively collect and preserve our cultural heritage. Obviously, there is interplay among the activities that support these increasingly overlapping missions, but I’ve found framing the work of academic research libraries in this way to be helpful as a foundation for conversations with folks from outside the profession.

Next, I admit that I don’t know enough yet to offer much prescriptive detail but can say that:

  • to be vital to the academic enterprise, the Libraries must position itself as an active, engaged participant in solving university-level problems (Looking outside ourselves);
  • to maintain its vitality, the Libraries as an organization must continually renew its expertise, facilities, service programming, and business practices (Change never ends);
  • the Libraries must become more sophisticated in how it identifies and presents its stories of success and impact to external stakeholders (Success enables success).

Lastly, I posit that a successful academic research library is ever sensitive to where the university and its component parts are heading. You want to find the future of the Libraries at OSU? Look to where teaching and research within the academic disciplines and cultural acquisition are moving, and you will see the Libraries skating to the same puck, sometimes as partner, sometimes as leader, always engaged.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts about our collective future as we interact in the coming weeks. This is going to be a lot of fun…

Damon Jaggars
Vice Provost and Director of University Libraries

University Libraries’ Copyright Resources Center celebrates Fair Use Week: February 23-27

Fair Use Week is an annual event hosted by the Association of Research Libraries to celebrate the fair use exception in U.S. Copyright Law. Fair use facilitates the use of copyrighted materials for education, research, news reporting, creative projects, and much more. Learn more at or follow @fairuseweek on Twitter. The OSU Libraries’ Copyright Resources Center will be blogging and tweeting about fair use, and hosting a fair use workshop during Fair Use Week.

–> Register now for Fair use in research and education (workshop): Thursday (2/26) 12:30 – 2 p.m.

–> Contact: University Libraries’ Copyright Resources Center at

From the Director – February 8, 2013 – Appointment of Head of Digital Initiatives

Today I have the pleasure of sharing the news of the appointment of Terry Reese as our Head of Digital Initiatives.  What follows is more detail from our press release about this appointment.

Carol Pitts Diedrichs, Director of Libraries for The Ohio State University Libraries, has announced the appointment of Terry Reese as Head of Digital Initiatives.

“Terry will lead our Digital Initiatives program, collaboratively developing strategies and implementing and supporting projects to advance the creation and integration of digital library services and digital collections,” said Diedrichs.

Diedrichs said key partners for the program will include the Libraries’ digital repository, publishing, preservation and reformatting, and special collections programs, as well as other potential campus partners.  “We are delighted he will be joining the OSU Libraries faculty and providing a renewed focus and leadership for these initiatives,” Diedrichs said.

Associate Director for Information Technology Beth Forrest Warner said Reese will provide the vision for a wide range of services.

“Terry will focus on building a cohesive and extensive suite of services,” Warner said.  “That suite will include discovery, access, and other aspects of managing the information lifecycle.”

Reese received his Masters of Library Science from Florida State University, and a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Oregon.

Reese comes to Ohio State from the Oregon State University Libraries, where he holds the Gray Family Chair for Innovative Library Services. His responsibilities include advising the university librarian on trends and issues affecting libraries in the 21st century and working to position library technology infrastructure to meet those needs.  Reese is also charged with building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders outside the libraries to foster growth and innovation with new communities.

Prior to being named the Gray Family Chair, Reese served as the Digital Production Unit head at Oregon State University Libraries, providing leadership for the Libraries’ institutional repository efforts, overseeing the digitization operations of the library and determines the metadata standards and procedures for the OSU Libraries’ digital collections. Working with staff from around the library, the Digital Production Unit oversaw the creation of Oregon State University’s institutional repository using DSpace, and worked with the University Archives and Special Collections to develop numerous digital collections utilizing the CONTENTdm platform.

Reese is the developer and software architect for the MarcEdit metadata software suite since the software’s creation in 1999. The MarcEdit user community is made up of representatives from over 117 countries and legal jurisdictions and is one of the most widely used applications for working with library metadata.

Reese will join The Ohio State University Libraries as an Associate Professor in the Information Technology division.  He is scheduled to assume the appointment April 1.

Terry, his wife and children will be joining us soon.  We’re looking forward to getting to know all of them and have the benefit of Terry’s expertise and experience applied to our initiatives.

From the Director – January 14, 2013 –Research Study with OCLC

Shared Storage for Journal Content

Management of print collections continues to be a pressing issue – not just for OSU but for libraries around the country.  Some of the solutions we have begun to implement such as the CIC Shared Print Repository are making real progress.  The issues of comparing and identifying serial volumes, handling the technical services processes for transferring and properly controlling the movement and location of pieces, and the transfer of those serial volumes is substantive and time consuming.  But, that work is made easier by these policy factors:

  • The content being transferred to a shared storage facility is fully available in electronic form.
  • The content is very discoverable by the user and they can navigate quickly to the full text online.
  • The content is backed up by local loading in the OhioLINK Electronic Journal Center or through other mechanisms such as Portico.
  • Virtually no one prefers to use the content in print rather than in electronic form.

As a result, it’s fairly easy to make a policy decision that a single print copy of this journal content can be housed at Indiana University and will serve the long term needs of all members of the CIC.  Material that we have in duplicate can be removed.

Shared Storage for Monographic Content

So while others work to execute the policy decisions above, my thoughts have become to turn to the issue of shared monograph storage.  This is clearly a much more complex issue with few simple and obvious solutions.  But, we can predict a few things that will likely occur in the next 3-5 years:

  • More of OSU’s book collection will be digitized by Google.
  • We’ll buy more digital copies of existing print books.
  • The mechanisms for reading online and with a tablet device will continue to improve.

Knowing those things means that we have to begin to think about how to go about shared storage of monographs.

Research Studies with OCLC

In 2011, OCLC released a report that concluded that:  “system-wide reorganization of collections and services that maximize the business value of print as a cooperative resource is both feasible and capable of producing great benefit to the academic library community.” (Cloud-sourcing Research Collections: Managing Print in the Mass-digitized Library Environment (Malpas 2011), p. 64 —  In 2012, OCLC released an intriguing publication – Print Management at “Mega-scale”: A Regional Perspective on Print Book Collections in North America – which can be found here:  Here’s a brief executive summary of the report:

The report “provides insight into the characteristics of a network of regionally consolidated print collections, key relationships across these collections, and their implications for system-wide issues such as information access, mass digitization, resource sharing, and preservation of library resources.

An analysis of regionally consolidated print collections, such as this current mega-regions report, requires a framework of regional consolidation, as well as data to support collection analysis within that framework. Our work in this area utilized urbanist Richard Florida’s mega-regions framework and the WorldCat bibliographic database to explore the North American print book resource as a network of regionally consolidated shared collections. Mega-regions are geographical regions defined on the basis of economic integration and other forms of interdependence. Using the mega-regions framework as the basis for a theoretical consolidation of library print resources enabled us to re-imagine the “natural boundaries” of collection management and to consider these regional aggregations in the context of shared traditions, mutual interests, and the needs of overlapping constituencies. The result is a new mapping of North American print collections against empirically derived zones of economic and cultural integration, robust knowledge flows, and networks of exchange.

Analysis of the regional collections is synthesized into a set of stylized facts describing their salient characteristics, as well as key cross-regional relationships among the collections. These stylized facts motivate a number of key implications regarding access, management, preservation, and other topics considered in the context of a network of regionally consolidated print book collections. The report also provides a simple framework for organizing the landscape of print book collection consolidation models, as well as for clarifying and distinguishing basic assumptions regarding print consolidation. Print Management at “Mega-scale” offers a unique perspective on the new geography of library service provision, in which services and collections are increasingly organized “above the institution.”

The report asks a key question:  “would the regional collections constitute a system of similar print book aggregations duplicated in different geographical regions, or would each collection represent a relatively unique component of the broader, system-wide print book corpus?”

There’s a bit more about this in OCLC’s hangingtogether blog at

CIC, OSU and OCLC Proposal

The report talks at some length about the CHI-PITT region – yes, that’s Chicago to Pittsburgh, a region that includes the bulk of the original CIC institutions (before the addition of Nebraska, Rutgers and Maryland).  The region doesn’t include Illinois, Iowa, Penn State or Indiana because the communities in which they are located are more rural in nature.  But it’s not much of a stretch to include those major institutions in a refinement of the region.

This prompted me to initiate a conversation with the Office of Research at OCLC about the mega regions report and the CIC.  They were intrigued and we crafted together a proposal for discussion with the CIC Library Directors at their late November 2012 meeting in Chicago.  In particular the section which begins on p. 19 in the PDF of the report talks about the mega-regions and the CIC (see discussion on p.45).

OCLC and I proposed the following to the CIC Library Directors and we have agreed to serve as the test CIC library.

We propose to undertake an analysis of print books held by a representative CIC member library with a view to understanding their value to the parent institution, the CIC consortium, and the surrounding Chi-Pitts mega-region. WorldCat bibliographic and holdings data and aggregated inter-lending statistics will be used to characterize local print book collection in context of CIC collective print book resource and Chi-Pitts regional resource. This analysis is expected to address the following questions:

  • What part of the local print book collection represents a distinctive asset when compared to holdings within the CIC or within the larger Chi-Pitts mega-region?
  • What are the characteristics of these distinctive resources with respect to topical coverage, age, and work-set level holdings (i.e. library holdings for related editions)?
  • What part of the collection maps to shared library investments across the CIC cohort, i.e. ‘core’ titles that are widely duplicated within the consortium? Are there widely-held books in the local collection that could be made available as a shared resource, enabling other institutions to reduce redundant investment?


The bulk of the work on this study will be done by OCLC.  Let me be clear that this is simply an initial study to understand better the scope of our collection and how it compares with our peer institutions in the CIC.  No decisions have been made to move or store our monograph collection remotely.  Instead, we’re beginning the appropriate work to understand our collection better as a part of the larger regional collection.  The hangingtogether blog posting includes a mention of the study.

From the Director –October 1, 2012 – Faculty Recognition Program

Guest posting by Dracine Hodges

This year marks the 10th annual Faculty Recognition Program (FRP) sponsored by the Office of Academic Affairs, University Libraries, and Faculty Club. It is an opportunity for successful faculty to select a book the Libraries bookplates in their honor. It has become a notable tradition and an important event for the University. It is unique due to its status as the sole University-wide celebration of recently tenured and/or promoted regular and clinical faculty on the Columbus, Lima, Mansfield, Marion, Newark, OARDC and Wooster campuses. Over the last ten years, hundreds of tenured and promoted faculty members have chosen a variety of titles representing all manner of scholarly pursuits.

As many of you know, the Acquisitions Department goes to work on the Faculty Recognition Program immediately after the Board of Trustees approves evaluated faculty for promotion and/or award of tenure or reappointment every June. The culminating reception in the fall is always a delight because of the engaging exhibit of FRP titles along with the commemorative booklet that includes many personal statements explaining the significance of a selection. The bookplated titles illuminate the rich inner life of OSU scholarly activity and the diverse community of lecturers, researchers, scientists, doctors, and librarians whose contributions support and advance higher education.

Honorees often select titles that are the culmination of years of research, or to pay homage to an influential text or mentor, and frequently to acknowledge the support of colleagues, family, and friends. Over the years, we’ve noted some interesting quirks about the program and the countless remarkable selections.

  • It would not surprise many of you to learn that one of the most frequently selected books is Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird.  A widely read and beloved classic American novel we finally declared a moratorium on to avoid further duplication in the system (nearly 20 copies held in multiple languages).
  • We’ve seen a number of highly regarded practitioner and technical tomes selected by clinical faculty that aided in the mastery of a skill or topical expertise such as The Biology of Cancer (Weinberg) and Principles of Evolutionary Medicine (Gluckman) to name a few. However, there is also evidence of the compassion infused in the practice of medicine with books like How to Break Bad News: A Guide for Health Care Professionals (Buckman) and Learning to Play God: The Coming of Age of a Young Doctor (Marion).
  • It is also edifying to discover titles that speak to the habitually interdisciplinary nature of research with books like Economics of Food Safety (Caswell) or Fashion in Medieval France (Heller).
  •  We always look forward to eye-catching titles like The Foul and the Fragrant: Odor and the French Social Imagination (Corbin) and Toilet Training in Less Than a Day (Azrin), which never fail to make an impression.
  • Demonstrating a strong record of research, teaching, publication and service is an intense undertaking, but many honored faculty have marked the crowning event with whimsical and allegorical children’s stories like Goodnight Moon (Brown), Betsy-Tacy (Lovelace) and Le Petit Prince (de Saint-Exupéry).

Every year the commemorative booklet proves to be as fascinating a read as the selected books within and often contributes to a number of TBR (To Be Read) lists. More importantly, it is an assembled record of the inspiration, reflection, humor, and very often gratitude experienced during the academic tenure journey of OSU faculty. For those who have not experienced the worthwhile reception, I encourage you to take a look at past FRP booklets archived in the Knowledge Bank. The Faculty Recognition Program serves as a reminder of the mission of a great and expansive research institution like The Ohio State University, where the breadth of knowledge and distinctive quality of its faculty is seen in the diversity of subjects and perspectives embraced in the Libraries collections.

From the Director – December 1, 2011 – Introducing the New OSUL Innovation Fund

I am pleased to announce the creation of the new OSUL Innovation Fund. The objective of the fund is to facilitate and support projects that advance innovative ideas and services that produce high value for users and support the strategic objectives of the OSU Libraries. Awards from this fund will serve as catalysts for introducing new and innovative technologies, research tools, user centric services and progressive approaches. Substantial initial funding has been allocated to provide the stimulus for this process. All requests for funds will be subject to a review process.

All initiatives or projects must align with the strategic plan. Therefore, the Executive Committee will be looking for projects whose nature and scope fulfill at least one or more of these premises:

The project…

  • Pilots or advances new ideas, services or technologies for our core users
  • Engages OSU faculty and/or students in using and enhancing library managed content
  • Initiates or advances new strategic partnerships with other libraries or academic units on campus
  • Positions the Libraries as a national leader in the integration of intellectual content and services within the larger world of ideas and knowledge.
  • Experiments with new ways of doing business
  • Creates infrastructure or enables other projects of strategic importance

Any member of the OSU Libraries faculty or staff is eligible to submit an Innovation Fund application for consideration. Groups or units may also submit an application.

The 1st round applicant deadline is December 30, 2011. For additional information about the application process and how successful awards are funded, please see the Innovation Fund Policy at

The Innovation Fund Application can be found at:

In particular, I encourage you to think about “launching a lot of small ships” rather than “building a 100,000-ton freighter and taking a long time to do it.”  (Y.S. Chi, IFLA World Library and Information Congress, San Juan, Puerto Rico, August 2011). That doesn’t mean that your proposals have to be inexpensive, but rather that we experiment and pilot as often as possible to move ideas forward.

At the most recent IFLA meeting in Puerto Rico, Puerto Rican author, Elidio La Torre Lagares, had this to say:  “We should be talking … not about the future of the library but the library of the future.”  I challenge each of you to think outside the box about creative ways that your division can advance innovative ideas and projects to improve upon the great products and services that OSUL already offers to our students, colleagues and the entire OSU community. 

From the Director – September 16, 2011 – Innovative Digital Books

Just a few days ago, Bill Young shared with our liball list the following wonderful animated cartoon called “it’s a Book.”  I have the same fondness for the physical book, but the book is beginning to change.  I attended the OCLC Symposium at the meeting of the American Library Association in New Orleans in June.  The title of the symposium was “The Infinite Collection: Resources in the Digital Age.”  The speakers were Clifford Lynch, Brian Schottlaender, Rick Anderson and Bobbi Newman.  One of the key things that piqued my interest was the innovative new books that are becoming available. 

Push Pop Books

Push Pop Books (recently acquired by Facebook) set out to reimagine the book using text, images, video, audio and interactive media.   Their first publication is Al Gore’s Our Choice, which was released earlier this year.

“Our Choice will change the way we read books. And quite possibly change the world. In this interactive app, Al Gore surveys the causes of global warming and presents groundbreaking insights and solutions already under study and underway that can help stop the unfolding disaster of global warming. Our Choice melds the vice president’s narrative with photography, interactive graphics, animations, and more than an hour of engrossing documentary footage. A new, groundbreaking multi-touch interface allows you to experience that content seamlessly. Pick up and explore anything you see in the book; zoom out to the visual table of contents and quickly browse though the chapters; reach in and explore data-rich interactive graphics.”  Download the book to your iPhone, Ipod Touch or Ipad from the App Store or online at  Be sure to blow on the windmill to make it move.

 10 innovative digital books you should know about

You’ll also want to take a look at this article by Peter Meyers at

Of course some of what is included here raises the question of  “what is a book?”  One good example from this article is the iBirdPro HD (  This is essentially a digital version of a field guide available for the iPad and iPhone.  But like many reference books, the print equivalent has been replaced with an easily updatable database or app.  The beauty, of course, the ease with which new information can be added.  These new versions also include features that could never have been provided in print – recordings of the various birds, selecting the characteristics of the bird you’re interested in and searching for species that match.  There is no question that these are improved books/reference guides for users.  But how can libraries expect to preserve them for the long term?

You’ll also want to check out the New York Public Library site NYPL Biblion (  This too is an app with the first installment focused on collections related to the 1939 World’s Fair.  “Every edition of Biblion will open up another of the Library’s collections, services, or programs by providing exclusive content in an innovative frame.”

British Library 19th Century Historical Collections

This app from the British Library includes more than 1,000 19th century books.  Available now for free, the collection is expected to expand to 60,000 title by later this summer when pricing will be announced.

 “What Big Media Can Learn from the New York Public Library”

Okay, this article isn’t specifically about digital books, but it is such a wonderful review of the scope of things the New York Public Library is doing to remain relevant and create a “virtual” role in the lives of their users.  The article is written by Alexis Madrigal and appears in the June 2011 issue of The Atlantic.  It’s online at

The article has high praise for Biblion noting that “moving around the app doesn’t feel like flipping through the pages of a museum catalog or crawling around a website.  To me, it felt like a native application for the tablet era …”  Here are a few more quotes to pique your interest:

  • The library sees its users as collaborators in improving the collections the library already has
  • The logic of delivering what users want leads inexorably to trying to give them the best digital experiences in the world
  • PR and content are all tied together now … Tumblr provides a flow of tiny stories from and about their collections
  • What’s on the Menu? – a slick project  to crowdsource the transcription of tens of thousands of menus that, by virtue of their fonts and designs are resistant to OCR

So I’ve digressed a bit from my original theme, but there is no doubt that the creation of information resources – whether they are books, archival sites, or apps – is changing and libraries will need to evolve with those changes.

From the Director – August 11, 2011 – Thompson Library Extended Hours Pilot Evaluation and Decision

Pilot Evaluation
During Spring Quarter 2011, a pilot program was conducted at the Thompson Library offering extended service hours until 2 a.m. Sunday through Thursday evenings (previously Thompson Library closed at midnight). This was in response to a request from Undergraduate Student Government (USG) for year-round extended hours at Thompson.  The Office of Academic Affairs (OAA) and the Libraries jointly funded the pilot in order to determine the level of use of extended hours.

The Libraries compiled detailed information during the pilot.  Use of the library during finals week was not counted, as Thompson has traditionally been open for study until 2 a.m. that week, and will continue to be.  Between midnight and 2 a.m., the average daily headcount at Thompson was 200 customers at 12:30 a.m., declining to less than 100 by 1:30 a.m.  The staff’s observations, circulation data and previous customer surveys at both the Thompson and the Science and Engineering libraries, showed primary use during that time was for study and access to computers, rather than access to library collections or services.

The original estimate of $50,000 per quarter to offer extended hours at Thompson proved correct. The Libraries would need a permanent annual budget increase of $150,000 to extend Thompson’s hours on an ongoing basis.

Based on this data and the current budget climate, I did not recommend permanently extending the hours at Thompson to OAA.  Provost Joseph Alutto has accepted that recommendation.  Therefore, evening hours at the Thompson Library have been returned to the original schedule, again open Sundays-Thursdays until midnight.

I believe the pilot was a fair test of the amount of use extended hours would receive.  Thanks to OAA’s support of the pilot, we were able to evaluate actual use rather than projections of what usage might be. The Libraries promoted the extended hours extensively before and during the pilot, including advertising in the Lantern, listings in Buckeye Net News, postings on the Libraries’ web site, and signage throughout the building. In addition, USG used the resources at its disposal to help heighten awareness of the extended hours.  But ultimately the limited use of Thompson after midnight could not justify the costs of continuing to provide the service. OAA’s generous funding of the pilot gave us the opportunity to “test the waters.”

The Science and Engineering Library (SEL) has been open 24/7 since it began serving the campus more than 15 years ago.  SEL has a seating capacity of more than 1,000, more than enough to accommodate the late night study needs of both SEL and Thompson Library users.  During this pilot, use of SEL did not change.  This summer the Libraries has invested additional funds into the renovation and restoration of SEL including new carpeting on all floors.  As funds are available, we expect to tackle the issues of new furniture and improvements to the first floor.  In addition, the University is creating new collaborative space in the north academic core.

I appreciate USG’s request that we consider keeping Thompson open later.  It’s always good to know that the resources the Libraries offer are well received.  We strive to respond to our customers’ concerns in a positive manner whenever possible.  We are always open to suggestions on ways we can improve our services. I encourage students, faculty and staff to continue providing input that will help us enhance University Libraries.

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