I’m not sure whether you are following the case of a publisher suing a librarian for his negative comments about the quality of the publishers’ output. As reported in the February 8 edition of Inside Higher Ed, Edwin Mellen Press is charging librarian Dale Askey and his current employer (McMaster University) with libel and claiming damages of over $4M. The case is bizarre on a number of fronts. First, Mr.
Today, we sent this letter to all faculty providing updates on our work. I wanted to share this with you—please let me know if faculty offer comments to you on its contents. As you can see, lots of things going on and as always major thanks for making it all possible. And special thanks to Communications and Assessment for drafting this letter.
Have a healthy and productive week,
Anne R. Kenney
Carl A. Kroch University Librarian
Cornell University Library
201 Olin Library
Ithaca, New York 14853-5301
The donation of the papers of feminist and sex writer Susie Bright and her visit to Cornell last week made the front page of The Ithaca Journal on Thursday. Two days earlier, the Arts Section of The New York Times ran a front page article on the Bibliotheque Nationale de France’s efforts to acquire a Marquis de Sade manuscript written in 1785 when Sade was imprisoned in the Bastille for assaulting women and girls.
Last Friday marked the 206th birthday of Ezra Cornell. Best known as the co-founder, along with Andrew Dickson White, of Cornell University, I particularly treasure him as a patron saint of libraries. A great believer in the power of books, Ezra’s first major philanthropic act was to fund the building of a free public library for the citizens of Tompkins County—a quarter of a century before Andrew Carnegie built his first public library and several years before Cornell University’s library was founded.
Take One: January 8, 2013 (Recommendations from Managers’ Council and LEG Response to CUL Staff Concerns)
As a follow-up the university employee survey the Managers’ Council, with the support of the Library Forum, held a series of listening sessions last year to seek greater clarity about specific library staff concerns. Your combined comments led Managers’ Council to develop a list of ten recommendations for the Library Executive Group to consider, among them the recommendation to hold library-wide discussions on doing less with less. I am pleased to share with you the full set of recommendations and suggested strategies for moving forward on concerns that library staff members mentioned.
Like many of you, I begin the New Year with resolutions, usually centering on getting in shape, eating more healthy food, or pledging to be more patient with family members. In addition, for the past decade or so, I’ve tried to add something new to my life in the never ending quest for good work-life balance. One year it was piano lessons, which I still take. Another year, I got a dog, and foolishly got a second dog several years later. I’ve also focused on challenging hiking trips.
The 2012 winter solstice is this Thursday and unless the Mayans are right and the world ends then, we will see the slow return of light to the northern hemisphere. It’s a time of year to wind down, enjoy time off with family and friends, and reflect on what sustains us. I seek comfort in small things during the darkest time: candles in the morning, good reads, music, and the wonders of the night sky. I hope over the winter break you, too, will take sustenance in the wonders in your life. Thank you for your hard work, dedication, and support this year.
A fascinating Neiman report out of Harvard entitled “Mastering the art of disruptive innovation in journalism” (http://nieman.harvard.edu/reports/article/102798/Breaking-News.aspx) advances a theory of “disruptive innovation” to describe the state of journalism, but as I read this piece I substituted “research libraries” for “journalism institutions,” and found its analysis very germane to our world.
The Association of Research Libraries has been conducting pulse surveys of its members’ financial situations since the 2008 recession. This ten-minute survey provides a brief snapshot that allows us to compare our situation with peers. ARL has just released the 2011-2012 survey results: 95 ARL libraries completed the survey, representing a 76% response rate.
I wanted to bring you up to date on activities associated with planning for library services and resources to support the NYC Tech Campus. You may recall that NYC Tech is one of the five key priorities LEG has identified for 2013-2015. Toward that end, I’ve appointed a Task Force that will begin its work this week. There are five specific tasks to guide the group’s work: