Thursday, 22 January 2015

NUI Galway Digital Library programme

Here at the NUI Galway Library, we are further embracing digital initiatives by promoting academic partnerships, while also providing services for NUI Galway’s digital outputs and holdings. Our main aims are to enhance digital offerings to students, the teaching and learning community, and researchers. We believe this will build on our proud history of creating, providing support for, and promoting publications, research data, institutional data, archives, open access to research, and identifiers. 

Over the next two years many of these digital programmes and services will be brought into operation.
A summary of proposed initiatives and services are:

Digital publications
NUI Galway's open access repository of research publications collects, preserves, and makes freely available scholarly communication, including peer-reviewed articles, working papers and conference papers created by NUI Galway researchers. ARAN widens your research reach, discovery, citations, and thereby increases the University’s rankings.
Read more about ARAN, NUI Galway’s open access repository.

Digital archives
We are committed to making archival material available online.  Digitisation and preservation opens up access to these valuable resources and allows them to be used and enjoyed by all. Recently, changes to our IT infrastructures and workflows provide for a unified and solid platform for all digital content and initiatives. This digital archive work is in development and pilot projects are due in quarter three 2015. The pilot projects focus on existing and new archives, for example the Tim Robinson archive and the Brenden Duddy archive.

Research data management
The Library is planning to provide a platform and service to bring together University resources to facilitate researchers in the management of high quality data with potential for long-term use. Research data platforms support modern research integrity, legislative change and compliance, and funder policy requirements. This research data management work is in development and the pilot platform is due in quarter three 2015.

DOIs are digital object identifiers, which are widely used and recognised in the publishing world. DOIs provide your research and University publications with recognised identifiers and provide for deeper discovery and linking. The Library has purchased an online software service that allows us to create NUI Galway DOIs programmatically (via an API) or manually (via web forms). This DOI service is currently being tested and piloted, with full launch expected in quarter two of 2015.

Makerspaces contain equipment such as 3d printers, electronics kits, and computers. They are an organised space to learn through making, breaking, and fixing. The Library has secured seed funding for a makerspace via the Student Projects’ Fund and a project to create such a space in the Library has started. The makerspace is expected to be launched in quarter three 2015.

Digital scholarship centres
Our vision is to further enable NUI Galway's digital scholarship by meeting the growing demand for advanced research expertise and digital library services at NUI Galway. Digital scholarship employs state-of-the-art technologies to transform the ways in which teaching, research, and scholarship are both performed and preserved.  Digital scholarship centres offer the support needed for the full life cycle of research in the digital age and are increasingly common in US universities where they are commonly based in libraries. Documents from a recent workshop on trends and good practice in digital scholarship centers gives a good sense of their potential and should promote further discussion.

Simply put, our digital library programme will enable digital scholarship for NUI Galway. It also aims to support related digital initiatives elsewhere in the University and to participate as a partner in projects locally, nationally, and internationally. At the core of this strategy, is our own recognition that the Library is only one of many participants in innovative projects focused on collections of digital materials and data on the NUI Galway campus. Other participants include the Moore Institute for the Humanities and Social Studies, Insight @NUI Galway, the Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge and the Huston School of Film and Digital Media. Read more about our Digital Scholarship Enablement Strategy.

Your input, perspective, work, partnership, and advice will continue to be valued as we launch and continually evolve Digital Library activities.

The members of the Digital Library Strategy Group can be contacted as below:

John Cox (chair) 3712
Peter Corrigan 2497
Cillian Joy 5463
Aisling Keane 4486
Niall McSweeney 3915


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