An alternative access method for the same information available from the CNI-ANNOUNCE listserv.
The US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has a major initiative underway to develop an AI Risk Management Framework. You can read more about this, including information about an upcoming workshop and a call for information here:
The questions posed here deserve some careful consideration.
One particular sub-part of this, which I unfortunately missed when it was announced, is a call that is about to close for comments on methodologies for evaluating user trust in AI based systems. You can find information about this here
This seems particularly relevant to the CNI community because of the rich connections with very familiar issues around assessing the quality and level of trust that should be placed in various information sources, and the identification of disinformation and misinformation.
I don’t know this for a fact, but I suspect that the NIST researchers working on this would welcome and consider comments that are a few days late. My apologies for not sharing this in a more timely fashion.
Call for entries: Directory and IFLA map
NEW Library Publishing Directory research data set
About the Library Publishing Directory
As a measure of how vastly information technology, computational methods, big data, and machine learning are transforming research practice, I invite readers to consider the following amazing achievement. DeepMinds, an AI-focused subsidiary of Google (Alphabet), has been developing an extremely accurate program to predict protein folding configurations, a notoriously difficult computational problem. Today they released a database that essentially captured their predictions for almost all known human proteins (about 350,000 of them) plus similar data for a number of other highly studied reference organisms such as the e. coli bacterium. The database, as I understand it, is fully public access, which is wonderful.
This is a major game changer and the implications are hard to fully predict, but I expect they will be striking. They summarized this work in a paper (preprint) in Nature. See
I expect there will be a flurry of media coverage over the next few days. Here are a couple of good early pieces to provide some context:
One of the issues that CNI has been tracking for decades is the implications of the gradual shift to entirely born-digital content in various markets. This is critical because at present the majority of this content is made available under a license regime, unlike physical objects (books, sound recordings, etc) where the doctrine of first sale applies. Under a license regime, rights holders can refuse to do business with specific institutions such as libraries at all (though there is legislation in place or under discussion in a few states to try to address this at a state level), or price material for libraries much higher than the same material offered to the general public, or only make materials available under restrictive conditions (for example, no ability for libraries to preserve for the long term).
The rapid transition of a great deal of video material to streaming services (and in many cases, newer materials are exclusively streaming) has placed the use of this material for teaching and research under serious stress, and also made it impossible to ensure the preservation of these materials for future researchers. When the pandemic forced the physical closure of many libraries and a move to online instruction and research, academic libraries found that they would have to pay substantially more for digital versions of materials that they had had in physical formats (VHS or DVD, for example). They also found that in many cases, digital versions were either totally unavailable, or unavailable to libraries. There’s a good deal of anecdotal evidence that I’ve heard suggesting this has been a major pain point for research libraries in the pandemic, and while older materials in physical formats are now accessible again as our campus libraries reopen, which helps a good
deal, it’s clear that there are major problems ahead for libraries as markets shift to more and more digital only content.
With this as context, I was delighted to see the announcement today that Ithaka S+R is undertaking a major, systematic look at the landscape for streaming media in collaboration with a group of academic and research libraries. I think this is badly needed. You can find details on this at:
I note that Ithaka S+R is inviting participation from additional libraries in this work; information is towards the end of the blog posting above.
We’ll certainly be reaching out to Ithaka to share what it’s learning with the CNI community as this work moves ahead.
–Joan Lippincott, Associate Executive Director Emerita, CNI
Alert: LSC Open Conversation #2 – Wednesday, July 14 at 4:15 PM EDT
Planning and Designing for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Go to https://www.pkallsc.org/ for more information.
an essay from the LSC Roundtable Archives: Planning and Designing for Inclusivity
research papers and stories from the field
Join this Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 839 0859 8483
Recording: LSC Open Conversation #1: The Impact of Biophilic Spaces on Student Success
Be in touch with any questions.
Jeanne L. Narum
Learning Spaces Collaboratory, Principal
Jeanne L. Narum
Learning Spaces Collaboratory, Principal
For a change, I’m sharing these in a reasonably timely fashion. I hope these are helpful. I thought it would be better to aggregate these rather than send separate emails if readers feel strongly that I shouldn’t do this, let me know.
First off, the University of Notre Dame obtained an IMLS grant looking at a number of machine learning issues and held a really good focus group session (I was very grateful to be able to participate in some of this) prior to the pandemic. Eric Lease Morgan and his colleagues have now completed the outputs from this work, which are extensive and really valuable. With his permission, here’s Eric’s summary of the work and the outputs.
Goal – To understand the unique current practices of domain
experts, librarians, and computer science specialists and to
identify possibilities to use topic modeling and NLP to enhance
or augment current library classification in order to meet
current cross-disciplinary research needs
Findings: 1) Interest in machine learning is high and appears to
be on a precipice, 2) The biggest issues with cross-disciplinary
research are not discovery related, 3) There is a high need for
interdisciplinary collaboration, 4) Community effort for greater
ROI, 5) “Garbage in, garbage out,”; machine learning requires
good data, 6) Ethics are a really big concern for machine
learning, especially regarding bias, and 7) There is a need for
greater machine learning literacy
Recommendations: 1) Increase the the community, 2) Develop
machine learning education for scholars and library
professionals, 3) Form learning communities and networks, 4)
Create and curate a clearinghouse for machine learning models, 5)
Support consortia around subject strength to develop machine
learning tools, 6) Develop processes to enhance discovery tools,
and 7) Support diversified machine learning innovations
As a bonus, we also published a freely available edited volume of fourteen essays on machine learning, entitled “Machine Learning, Libraries, and Cross-Disciplinary Research: Possibilities and Provocations”. From the preface:
This collection of essays is the unexpected culmination of a
2018–2020 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services
to the Hesburgh Libraries at the University of Notre Dame… The
resulting essays cover a wide ground. Some present a practical,
“how-to” approach to the machine learning process for those who
wish to explore it at their own institutions. Others present
individual projects, examining not just technical components or
research findings, but also the social, financial, and political
factors involved in working across departments (and in some
cases, across the town/gown divide). Others still take a larger
panoramic view of the ethics and opportunities of integrating
machine learning with cross-disciplinary higher education,
veering between optimistic and wary viewpoints.
For more detail and full access to the final report as well as the edited volume, please see:
1. project home page – https://innovation.library.nd.edu/crossdisciplinary-research/
2. final report – https://curate.nd.edu/show/7d278s48s11
3. edited volume – https://curate.nd.edu/show/7h149p32226
Again, thank you for your participation!
Eric Morgan for Team IMLS Machine Learning Grant
University of Notre Dame
Next, a very interesting report that looks at publishing patterns over time and what they suggest about evolving national roles in science and its communication. This was done by the Center for Security and Emerging Technology at Georgetown University. Curiously, I’ve not seen a lot of coverage or discussion of this report (though perhaps I’m just not paying attention to the right places). See
Also in the general area of research and national security issues, this is a useful piece that also comes out of the same group which relates to our work last year on Science Nationalism developments. See
This is a paper that’s just come out looking closely at how open science practices have evolved during the pandemic, focusing on COVID-19 research. We will need to see a lot more analysis of the issues raised here across various disciplines in the coming months. See
I’ve been tracking exemplars of possible post-PDF successors to the traditional scholarly paper for over 20 years; while there have been many of these, I don’t think any have really seen adoption at scale. Here is a new set of examples released by eLife called “executable research articles” which are interesting because of their connection to the reproducibility and replicability movements in scholarship, and also because they use increasingly common and widely adopted tools. Here’s the announcement and the pointers:
The collection follows the launch last year of new open-source ERA technology that lets eLife authors publish articles that treat live code and data as first-class citizens. This article format sets a new, open standard for the transparency, interactivity and reproducibility of published research. Authored with popular tools such as Jupyter Notebooks and R Markdown, ERA is available for all papers published in eLife.
Our collection showcases the breadth and variety of possibilities this new format offers, and you can view it athttps://elifesciences.org/collections/d72819a9/executable-research-articles.
You can also read about the experiences of our first authors in an accompanying blog post, at https://elifesciences.org/labs/51777514/elife-authors-relay-their-experiences-with-executable-research-articles.
Finally, here’s a link to a good piece from Steven Bell of Temple University that EDUCAUSE has just put out looking at what’s happened to the relationship between library reserves and textbooks, largely (but certainly not entirely — these trends were already well underway) as a result of the pandemic. See
The US Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has issued a call for input on changes to federal policy to improve scientific research integrity. The call is open till July 28, 2021. See
The call covers a broad range of topics, and I am certain some CNI member institutions will want to contribute to this conversation.
Our colleague Thomas Padilla, now at the Center for Research Libraries, is doing a survey as part of a new project called Ground Truths which is looking at the very important issue of using cultural heritage data in machine learning contexts (there are real problems with well-labeled training datasets, for example). If you follow this link, there’s more background on the project before you start the survey form. See
I think this should develop some very interesting data for the community, and as it’s compiled I’ll share pointers here. Also, hopefully, we can get an update on this work as it moves forward during one of our upcoming CNI meetings.
Last month I attended the Library Publishing Coalition’s virtual Forum, which featured a rich and thought-provoking program covering a wide variety of topics related to library engagement in publishing initiatives. Videos and slides from the event are now available:
Though not all sessions are available, a great number of them are.