Archive for September, 2012

Developing future library leaders: The MIT Libraries’ Fellows Program

Posted September 27th, 2012 by Heather Denny

What will the future of academic librarianship look like? The MIT Libraries have a few ideas. With the launch of a new fellows program, the Libraries are taking an active role in shaping the future of the profession. The MIT Libraries’ Fellows Program was created to provide exceptional, early-career library professionals with the opportunity to contribute to program areas of distinction and strategic priority in a dynamic academic research library. Out of a pool of over 175 accomplished applicants, two fellows were chosen for two-year fellowship positions. Helen Bailey was appointed to the position of Library Fellow for Digital Curation and Preservation, and Mark Clemente was appointed to the position of Library Fellow for Scholarly Publishing and Licensing.

“The fellows will work with and learn from their MIT Libraries’ colleagues who are recognized leaders in these fields,” said Ann Wolpert, Director of Libraries. “Developing programs which contribute to the wider academic and research library community, as well as the real-world opportunities here at MIT, will position these highly talented fellows to advance in both the profession and their careers.”

Helen Bailey, the digital curation and preservation fellow, will report to Nancy McGovern, Head of Curation and Preservation Services, a highly respected leader in the field of digital curation and preservation with a well-established national and international reputation. Under McGovern’s direction, Bailey will work on a range of activities related to the long-term management of digital content, including participating in the Libraries digital content management initiative, contributing to an ongoing scan of community standards and practice for digital curation and preservation, the development of outreach materials to raise awareness about good practice, and conducting an experiment to recommend a solution for a specific curation or preservation need.

MIT Libraries' Fellows: Helen Bailey and Mark Clemente

Mark Clemente, the scholarly publishing and licensing fellow, will report to Ellen Duranceau, Program Manager in the Office of Scholarly Publishing and Licensing (OSPL). Duranceau has led the Libraries efforts in support of the MIT Faculty Open Access Policy and provides copyright and scholarly publishing assistance to the MIT community. She also consults broadly with universities on scholarly communication policies and practice. Working with Duranceau, Clemente will contribute to the work of the OSPL in the areas of copyright advocacy, intellectual property, open access, and rights retention. Clemente will participate in enhancing and expanding a repository collection of open access papers under the MIT Faculty Open Access Policy and will develop and carry out projects to advance the implementation of the Policy.

Bailey and Clemente both bring strong skills and backgrounds in library science to their new roles. Bailey has a B.S. from Florida State University, an M.S. in Information Studies from the University of Texas at Austin, and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Library and Archives Conservation. Since 2010 she has been a preservation specialist with the Dartmouth College Library. Clemente has a B.A. from American University and a M.S. in Library Information Science from Simmons College. He most recently served as a digital collections assistant at Boston College’s O’Neill and Burns Libraries.

Both fellows will have the opportunity to expand their skills and experience in ways that position them to excel and lead in the research library profession. The Fellows Program was made possible with support from The Director’s Fund for Library Excellence.



OECD Coming to MIT

Posted September 27th, 2012 by Katherine McNeill

OECD logo

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is coming to MIT!

Attend a presentation on OECD Information resources by Kathleen DeBoer, Deputy Head of the OECD Washington Center

When: Friday, October 5, 2012, 10-11AM
Where: 14N-132
Register at:

Learn about the OECD iLibrary ( and:

  • Information the OECD provides on countries around the world, in areas such as:
    • Development
    • Employment
    • Energy
    • Environment
    • Trade
    • and more…
  •  How to efficiently extract data from their vast array of statistics

Note: For those interested in working for the OECD (, Ms. DeBoer will be available to meet in the afternoon to discuss the application process; if interested, contact her at

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) provides a forum in which governments can work together to share experiences and seek solutions to common problems. Today, 34 OECD member countries worldwide regularly turn to one another to identify problems, discuss and analyse them, and promote policies to solve them. It is one of the largest economics publishers in the world.

OA research in the news: Global warming and tropical rainfall

Posted September 27th, 2012 by Katharine Dunn

Scientists believe that global warming will lead to more intense rainfall around the world, but models have been at odds about the rate at which it will affect extreme precipitation in tropical regions. A new study by atmospheric science professor Paul O’Gorman uses observations and computer simulations to estimate that with each one-degree Celsius climb in temperature there will be 10 percent heavier rainfall extremes in the tropics. This “suggests a relatively high sensitivity of tropical precipitation extremes to global warming,” O’Gorman told the MIT News.

Explore Professor O’Gorman’s research in the Open Access Articles collection in DSpace@MIT, where it is openly accessible to the world.

Since the MIT faculty established their Open Access Policy in March 2009 they have made thousands of research papers freely available to the world via DSpace@MIT. To highlight that research, we’re offering a series of blog posts that link news stories about scholars’ work to their open access papers in DSpace.

Particle physics on path to open access

Posted September 26th, 2012 by Ellen Duranceau

Six years of global negotiation have paid off for the consortium that has a vision: to make the scholarly literature of high energy physics openly available to anyone in the world.

The Sponsoring Consortium for Open Access Publishing in Particle Physics (SCOAP3) has negotiated 3-year contracts with 12 journals “that would make 90% of high-energy-physics papers published from 2014 onwards free to read,” according to a report in Nature.

The SCOAP3 deal involves pledges of support from more than 1,000 libraries and other funders around the world, including the MIT libraries. Libraries’ payments will be used to pay the publishers an agreed-upon fee per paper, averaging $1550. In return, all 12 journals, including about 7,000 articles from journals such as the American Physical Society’s Physical Review C and D, Elsevier’s Physics Letters B and Nuclear Physics B, and Springer’s European Physical Journal C and Journal of High Energy Physics, will make their content openly accessible to all readers. Six of the journals will switch their business models from subscription to open access. For others, only the high-energy physics articles will be open access.

Salvatore Mele, the leader of the SCOAP3 project at CERN, the high-energy physics laboratory in Geneva, indicated to Nature that the goal of the project is “to open access without researchers noticing any effect on their grant funding or on the way they publish their papers.” Pledging libraries are expected to be able to repurpose funds that were being used for subscriptions to these journals to pay the SCOAP3 fees; publishers will reduce their subscription prices to reflect fees they will obtain through SCOAP3.

The details of those arrangements are expected to be worked out in late 2012 and into 2013. Only then will contracts actually be signed. Nevertheless, this week’s announcement of a list of journals with specific article processing charges takes the deal a significant step closer to the conclusion of what Peter Suber, philospher and a leader of the open access movement, has called “the most systematic attempt to convert all the journals in a given field to open access.”

More information:
Nature article
SCOAP3 website

Limited library deliveries Friday, September 21, due to inauguration

Posted September 18th, 2012 by Melissa Feiden

President L. Rafael Reif, MIT News photo: Dominick Reuter

Due to inauguration events for MIT President L. Rafael Reif this Friday, September 21, MIT Libraries book and mail deliveries will be limited to the morning/early afternoon.  Requested library materials may not be available for pick up until Monday.

The MIT Libraries will be open the usual fall term hours during the inauguration.  You can check with library service desks to find out if materials are available on Friday.  Regular library deliveries will resume on Monday, September 24.

Have questions?  Ask Us!


OA research in the news: Predicting the best medical treatment

Posted September 13th, 2012 by Katharine Dunn

It can be tough for doctors to predict which treatment will best improve the health of patients with social anxiety disorder, whose sufferers intensely fear social situations. A new paper coauthored by Brain and Cognitive Sciences professor John Gabrieli could help make doctors’ choice easier. In a paper published this month, researchers show that patients with more brain activity in visual processing areas benefited most from cognitive behavioral therapy. “This was a chance to ask if these brain measures, taken before treatment, would be informative in ways above and beyond what physicians can measure now,” Gabrieli told the MIT News.

Explore Professor Gabrieli’s research in the Open Access Articles collection in DSpace@MIT, where it is openly accessible to the world.

Since the MIT faculty established their Open Access Policy in March 2009 they have made thousands of research papers freely available to the world via DSpace@MIT. To highlight that research, we’re offering a series of blog posts that link news stories about scholars’ work to their open access papers in DSpace.

Barker Reading Room Hours Update

Posted September 11th, 2012 by Marion Leeds Carroll

Barker Reading Room, photo by L. Barry Hetherington

September 11, 2012 UPDATE–Starting on September 12, Barker Library’s main reading room will be closed until 3pm every day through January 2013. The rest of the library will remain open.

May 14, 2012–After Commencement on June 8, 2012 the Barker Library Reading Room will close for the summer to allow for renovations to the Reading Room and Dome. The Reading Room is expected to reopen in September 2012 for the fall term, although renovations will continue through December with occasional minor disruptions.

As part of the project, a new entrance will be added to the Reading Room to make it accessible as a 24-hour study space. An around-the-clock Reading Room under the iconic Dome will significantly expand students’ options for late night study on campus. Currently the Libraries offer secure 24/7 study areas in both Hayden and Dewey libraries, the addition of the Barker Reading Room will more than triple the amount of space currently available for 24/7 study. The Libraries expect to inaugurate 24-hour service in Barker beginning in January 2013.

While the Reading Room is closed, library users can find alternative spaces for studying in Barker Library on floors six through eight, as well as in other library locations. Stay informed of renovation closures and progress by checking the Barker Library website or following @mitlibraries on Twitter.

Your ideas at work: survey results & user studies

Posted September 11th, 2012 by Remlee Green
Lightbulb made out of the alphabet

Photo by adihrespati. Ideas never run out. Kampungsawah, Jakarta. March 16, 2010. Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Did you respond to the MIT Libraries survey last October? Have you ever participated in a library usability test? What ever happened to your great ideas and input?

Your input is a critical element in how we shape improvements and the future of the Libraries. We use the results of these various forms of feedback to examine our physical and virtual library services, consider possible improvements, and implement solutions where possible. The MIT Libraries Assessment Program looks at the results of surveys, usability tests, and user studies to determine how we can best serve you.

Curious about past survey results? Take a look at the survey findings. We’ll add more about usability test results in the future.

We value your feedback in surveys, but we’re always happy to hear your thoughts and ideas about how we can improve library services. Tell Us!

Games By The Book: Videogame Adaptations of Literary Works

Posted September 6th, 2012 by Patsy Baudoin

Great Gatsby game imageThe Hayden Library will host an interactive exhibition starting on September 7th. Patrons will be able to play a selection of video games adapted from literary works from Sophocles to Douglas Adams. The exhibit explores the range of approaches taken to create videogames of literary works. The result is often whimsical, turning the worlds of these stories into spaces to be explored.

The games featured in the exhibit invite players to become Nick Carraway, the narrator of The Great Gatsby, dodging drunken partygoers in the way to meeting Gatsby; explore the world of Shakespeare’s plays; carry out an introspective exercise based on Sophocles’ Oedipus at Colonus; or revisit the events of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Games by the Book, curated by Clara Fernández-Vara and Nick Montfort, will be open to the public through October 8th on the 2nd floor of the Hayden Library. More details at

The exhibit is sponsored by the De Florez Fund for Humor, the MIT Council of the Arts, the MIT Game Lab, and the Electronic Literature Organization and Comparative Media Studies.

FRED App—Take the economy with you wherever you go

Posted September 6th, 2012 by Katherine McNeill


FRED (Federal Reserve Economic Data), the St. Louis Fed’s economic database, has now developed the FRED App – available free for iOS and Android Devices. The FRED app lets you access their full range of economic data – anytime, anywhere.

In addition, FRED just surpassed a new milestone–with over 50,000 economic time series in its database–and is expanding every month. Recently added data include: Eurostat’s harmonized indices, gold prices, more consumer credit data, and vehicle miles traveled data.  FRED data can be searched in many ways and the system contains several tools for mapping, graphing, and exporting data.

Want to explore our full range of economic data sources?  See our Economics Research Guide.

Jay K. Lucker, former director of the MIT Libraries, dies at 82

Posted September 5th, 2012 by Heather Denny
Jay K. Lucker

Jay K. Lucker, former director of the MIT Libraries

Jay K. Lucker, former director of the MIT Libraries, and nationally known library building and planning consultant, passed away on Sept. 2. He was 82.

Lucker was a native of New York City who started his library career at the New York Public Library in 1954, following service in the U.S. Army. He earned an AB degree from Brooklyn College, and an MS degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Library Service. While at Brooklyn College he met his wife, Marjorie Stern.

Lucker came to the MIT Libraries in 1975 from Princeton University, where he was associate university librarian. During his 20-year career at MIT, he guided the Libraries through the beginning of the transition to many digital library resources and services.

“Jay Lucker led the MIT Libraries during a period of exceptional collection growth, as well as in the momentous early years of digital library development. His contributions continue to inspire, and he will be sorely missed,” his successor, MIT Director of Libraries Ann Wolpert, said.

Continue reading the full obituary on MIT News…

OA research in the news: Dincă named to TR35 list

Posted September 5th, 2012 by Katharine Dunn

Assistant chemistry professor Mircea Dincă has been named one of Technology Review magazine’s 35 Innovators Under 35. Dincă was cited in the September/October issue for building intricate sponges that, though tiny, can store energy like hydrogen to more efficiently fuel a car. His group is also working on turning the sponges into materials to make batteries.

Explore Professor Dincă’s research in the Open Access Articles collection in DSpace@MIT, where it is openly accessible to the world.

Since the MIT faculty established their Open Access Policy in March 2009 they have made thousands of research papers freely available to the world via DSpace@MIT. To highlight that research, we’re offering a series of blog posts that link news stories about scholars’ work to their open access papers in DSpace.