Skip to main content

Take One: March 17, 2014 (Measurements and Outcomes)

Later this month Ithaka S&R will publish an Issue Brief that I wrote entitled “Leveraging the Liaison Model: From defining 21st century research libraries to implementing 21st century research universities.” In this piece I argue that research libraries should focus less on measuring what they are doing and more on developing metrics that measure how well they are enabling their parent institutions to thrive in a very changing world.

Take One: March 3, 2014 (Cornell Open Access Publication Fund review and renewal)

It has been five years since Cornell became a signatory to the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity (COPE) initiative ( that committed Cornell to establish “durable mechanisms for underwriting reasonable publication charges” for its faculty to publish in open access journals. The Provost matched the Library in providing funds totaling $50,000 to support Cornell authors (faculty and students) wishing to submit to pure open access journals.

Take One: February 24, 2014 (test your knowledge of the library)

One of the goals stemming from the staff engagement work we’ve been undertaking was to improve the means for communication and to facilitate the finding and using of information related to the library. Towards this end, and in the spirit of testing how well the library makes important information available, I’m inviting you to take this five question quiz on using the Staff Web (

Take One: February 17, 2014 (news for faculty)

I wanted to share with you the letter that went out to all faculty last Thursday updating them on important developments in the Library. As you may know, we send a letter to faculty early in the fall and spring semesters. These semi-annual emails are designed to supplement the liaison contacts with faculty that occur on a regular basis. Our hope is these letters keep faculty informed but also serve as the means for engaging them with library staff, perhaps even sparking new conversations.

Take One: February 10, 2014 (8 million and counting)

Next Friday, February 21, 2014, we’ll be celebrating the arrival of our 8 millionth physical volume: a Civil War photograph album assembled for Louis-Philippe d’Orleans, Comte de Paris. It's a gift from Beth and Stephan Loewentheil and is one of the finest surviving Civil War photograph albums, with 265 rare photographs by the preeminent photographer Mathew Brady and others. It's been 11 years since our 7 millionth volume (Gardner’s Photographic Sketch Book of the War -- also a rare volume of Civil War photographs).

Take One: February 3, 2014 (celebrating a life)

Last Friday I attended a memorial service in Cambridge MA for Ann Wolpert, the director of MIT Libraries for the past 17 years. She succumbed to pancreatic cancer last October, on her 70th birthday. Ann was a visionary leader in many ways, but her name is most directly linked with open access to peer-reviewed scholarly journals. Under her prodding, the MIT faculty adopted an Open Access policy in 2009, providing MIT with nonexclusive permission to make accessible their journal articles.

Take One: January 27, 2014 (preview of All Staff meeting)

Next Monday and Tuesday, we will hold the first All Staff meeting of year.  I will introduce new staff, update you on budgetary and financial issues (including the impact of the new budget model on the library), provide findings from the recent ClimateQual Survey, and report on progress towards meeting our 5 goals for the years 2013-2015.

Take One: January 14, 2014 (keeping up with tech trends)

It is not often that I’m keen on joining a new weblog, newsfeed, or listserv but I want to thank Barbara Eden for pointing me to Each morning a daily digest is sent to members, with a lead story and 4-5 other provocative headlines and abstracts of news, reviews and analysis covering technology trends, applications, social networking and social media. For instance today’s top story is on legal threats to net neutrality.

Take One: January 6, 2014 (on the beauty of libraries)

Welcome to a brand new year! To set the stage for what I predict will be a beautiful year for libraries in general and CUL in particular, I thought you would enjoy this set of quotes from library admirers through the ages, including Cornellians Carl Sagan, E.B. White, and Kurt Vonnegut. Each quote is accompanied by an image of a beautiful library from around the globe, including Cornell’s AD White Library and the private library of Jay Walker, the co-chair of the Library’s Campaign for Collections.

Take One: December 16, 2013 (How’s the climate?)

Earlier this semester, 273 of us responded to the ClimateQual survey that measured 26 dimensions of an organization’s climate. The results are now back and the analysis is done, so I’d like to share the report and the highlights with you. Overall, we can be very proud of the health of our workplace. For 20 of the 26 organizational climate dimensions that the survey measured, at least 75% of respondents had a positive view (meaning that they rated us 4.5 or higher on a 7-point scale).