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TRLN Supports Project ReShare, Open Source Library Resource Sharing Platform

TRLN has announced that it will contribute financial support to Project ReShare, a community of library consortia, vendors, and service providers committed to an open approach to library resource sharing systems.

Project ReShare is building an open source, community-owned and managed, highly scalable library resource sharing platform and its accompanying software applications. A minimally viable product is expected to be delivered by Fall 2019 and will enable the discovery, management, and fulfillment of unmediated interlibrary loan requests. The Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI) and Index Data kickstarted construction of the platform with initial investments of funding and developer staff time, respectively. TRLN’s contribution of $6,400 matches the per library contribution previously committed by PALCI, and reflects the consortium’s desire to see alternative options and tools responsive to the strategic needs of the resource sharing community.  This monetary contribution will further support the design and development of the platform by covering costs related to Project ReShare’s membership in the Open Library Foundation. The Open Library Foundation provides ReShare with collaborative infrastructure and a home for the project’s intellectual property, which will be made openly available under a permissive Apache 2.0 open source software license.

TRLN Executive Director Lisa Croucher reflects, “TRLN has been involved in ReShare since its inception, having contributed significant staff time and leadership to the project. We are pleased to now be able to make a more tangible commitment in the way of financial support as the project gains momentum. While resource sharing is a priority for most consortia, it is especially important for TRLN, due to the geographic proximity of our members and our long history of collaborative collection development.”

Project ReShare is led by a steering committee of representatives from Duke University Libraries, the Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA), Index Data, Ivy Plus Libraries, Knowledge Integration, the Mozilla Foundation, the National Széchényi Library (Hungary), North Carolina State University Libraries, Northwestern University Libraries, the Open Library Foundation, PALCI, TRLN, the University of Chicago Library, the University of Houston, and the University of Pennsylvania.

For more information about Project ReShare, please visit https://projectreshare.org, or contact Jill Morris, Project ReShare Steering Committee Chair, at info@projectreshare.org.

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TRLN Launches New Shared Index and Discovery Service

The TRLN Discovery project to build a shared index and discovery service reached a significant milestone this month as three of the four TRLN member institutions released the new service to their campus communities. North Carolina Central University (NCCU) was the first to launch, unveiling the service on Monday, January 7. North Carolina State University (NCSU) launched on Monday, January 14, and Duke University followed on Wednesday, January 16.  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) will release a public Beta version on Monday, February 4. The new product will significantly streamline library users’ experience by providing a single environment in which to efficiently search for and access all research materials held by TRLN member libraries.

This major step is the result of deep, ongoing collaboration over the past two years following the consortium’s joint decision to move away from the legacy Endeca-based catalog and instead use open-source software tools (Blacklight and Solr) to build a single, easily-customized shared discovery service. Blacklight serves as the foundation for the product, which is being hosted in Amazon Web Services (AWS), a secure cloud service platform. A team of developers and product owners from Duke, NCSU, and UNC-CH, as well as TRLN central office staff, has met regularly over the last two years and followed an agile software development approach to review and prioritize each phase of the work.

TRLN Executive Director Lisa Croucher reflects, “With the combination of an index shared across four institutions, open source tools like Blacklight and Solr, and the AWS cloud, this project launches TRLN into a new frontier of shared discovery, one that we anticipate will result in increased efficiency and cost savings. Eleven years after we launched the Endeca-powered Search TRLN – a similarly creative approach to discovery – I’m pleased that we are able to again share our next generation shared discovery project with colleagues in the library and consortia community.”

From this point forward, the product will be overseen by the Shared Discovery Services Working Group. A team of developers will continue to monitor the product and make modifications as needed based on local needs. Regular updates about the project will be available on the working group’s webpage.

Each institution welcomes feedback from users as they become familiar with the new catalog. Feedback mechanisms or points of contact for each institution are listed below:

Duke: Click blue “Feedback” tab on right side of search results page (see example below). More about the changes at Duke.

NCCU: Contact Vickie Spencer, Access Services Librarian (vspencer@nccu.edu)

NCSU: Click “Contact Us” in the yellow banner or the red “Chat Now” tab on the right (see example below). More about the changes at NCSU.

UNC-CH: Contact Chad Haefele, Head of User Experience and Assessment (chaefele@email.unc.edu). Once the Beta version is released, a feedback link will be added to the Libraries website.

 

 

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Triangle Scholarly Communication Institute Announces 2019 Theme and Call for Proposals

The Triangle Scholarly Communication Institute (SCI) is now welcoming proposals from teams wishing to participate in the 2019 SCI taking place from October 13 through 17, 2019, in Chapel Hill, NC.

The Institute is part retreat, part seminar, and part unconference. Based on a theme that changes every year, participants set their own agenda and define their own deliverables; the Institute supplies the environment and a network of peers to help stimulate and develop creative thinking aimed at promoting positive change in research methods, publishing, digital humanities, digital archives, and other topics related to transformations in scholarly communication. Each year, about 5 teams with 4 to 6 participants each are invited to attend based on successful responses to a request for proposals, and the Institute covers all of their expenses to attend a 4-day program in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Ideally, teams are comprised of people who may not otherwise have the opportunity to interact and who wish to use this as an opportunity to launch new collaborations and projects. Teams whose participants represent a variety of backgrounds, disciplines, professions, and a broad diversity of perspectives are especially encouraged to apply.

This year’s theme is Equity in Scholarly Communications, described in part on the SCI 2019 theme page in this way:

Discussions around scholarly communications, at this Institute and elsewhere in North America and Europe, tend not to account for the wide range of factors that influence whether and how different communities create and access scholarship: not all stakeholders are from well-resourced institutions or nations; not all of us speak, write, read, search, and think in the same language; not all of us enjoy robust support for scholarship, or reliable access to the Internet, or modern research tools, or easy access to libraries, or means of keeping in touch with colleagues and abreast with global developments in our disciplines. Too many platforms, standards, systems, publications, projects, and discussions move forward with only some of us in view.

For the 2019 Triangle Scholarly Communication Institute we invite proposals from teams that aim to build a more inclusive and equitable global network of scholarship. SCI is an opportunity to spend a few days with a diverse set of people to investigate challenges, develop plans, test processes, come to agreements, and launch initiatives. SCI is an ideal place to bring together perspectives and expertise that may not normally intersect, and to build understandings and new models based on them. We encourage pragmatic, proactive optimism, and hope participants will use SCI as a platform to nurture positive change.

We especially encourage teams with participants from the “global south”, historically black colleges and universities, Hispanic serving institutions, tribal colleges and universities, community colleges, K-12 schools, independent scholars, and other institutions and backgrounds whose needs and perspectives are too often overlooked in discussions about scholarly communications and the infrastructures and processes that support it.

Project proposals are due April 24, 2019. You can read more about SCI 2019 at the following links:

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TRLN Remembers Joe Hewitt

On Wednesday, December 19, 2018, Joe Hewitt passed away leaving a legacy of inspired leadership at multiple TRLN member institutions. Joe served as the University Librarian at UNC-Chapel Hill (“UNC-CH”) from 1993-2004 after having served as Associated University Librarian for Technical Services for nearly 20 years.

During his career at UNC-CH Joe led several significant initiatives that strengthened the bonds between academic libraries, scholars, and students. Key achievements included the launch of Documenting the American South, one of the nation’s pioneering digitization projects; the renovation of the Undergraduate Library; and the establishment of the Carolina Academic Library Associates (“CALA”) program.

Joe’s vision and leadership were particularly instrumental in the formation of TRLN as we know it today. In December 1977 he wrote the “Proposal for Funding to Support Cooperative Library Development Programs Between Duke University, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, Raleigh” (North Carolina Central University had not yet joined the consortium).

A list of other papers and presentations Joe composed about TRLN between 1975 and 1987 is available here. These works attest to how influential his support was in the evolution of the consortium’s activities and services. The original papers and presentations are held in the UNC University Archives.