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And They Were There — Reports of Meetings-2020 Charleston Conference

by | Sep 30, 2021 | 0 comments


Against the Grain Vol. 33#4

Column Editors:  Ramune K. Kubilius  (Galter Health Sciences Library & Learning Center, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)  and Sever Bordeianu  (Head, Print Resources Section, University Libraries, MSC05 3020, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM  87131-0001;  Phone: 505-277-2645;  Fax: 505-277-9813) 

Column Editor’s Note:  Thanks to the Charleston Conference attendees who agreed to write brief reports that highlight and spotlight their 2020 Charleston Conference experience.  Out of necessity, the conference moved from on-site to virtual, and all registrants were given the opportunity to view recordings, to re-visit sessions they saw “live,” or to visit sessions they missed.  Without a doubt, with 173 total choices, there were more Charleston Conference sessions than there were volunteer reporters for Against the Grain, so the coverage is just a snapshot.  For the 2020 conference, reporters were invited to share what drew them to various themes and sessions, or what they learned, rather than report on individual sessions as they’ve done for “And They Were There” reports in past years when conferences were on-site.  

There are many ways to learn more about the 2020 conference.  Some presenters posted their slides and handouts in the online conference schedule.  Please visit the conference site, https://www.charleston-hub.com/the-charleston-conference/, and link to selected videos, interviews, as well as to blog reports written by Charleston Conference blogger, Donald Hawkins, https://www.charleston-hub.com/category/blogs/chsconfnotes/.  The 2020 Charleston Conference Proceedings will be published in 2021, in a new partnership with University of Michigan Press:  https://www.press.umich.edu/. — RKK

My five favorite concurrent sessions/presentations from the 2020 virtual Charleston Conference (and why)

Reported by Cara Mia Calabrese  (Acquisitions & Access Librarian, Miami University) 

The Swift Shift to E: Acquisitions Complexities during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic

Acquisitions and Electronic Resources have been working to sustain access, plan for budget cuts, and activate free resources, so there hasn’t been much time to reach out to colleagues to see how they were adapting to the rapid changes at their institutions. This session was able to give that check in. Librarians discussed how they approached this sudden shift. I really appreciated the vendor’s insight and their mention of the trends they had seen. I thought this session was as advertised, but had expected some more talk about evaluating the many resources vendors made availablehttps://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/rkZcgwjNfTYisGrkY

What would it really take to achieve a full OA transition? An “open” take from a publisher, librarians, and a funder

This was one of my most anticipated sessions of the conference and it lived up to my expectations. The session had a well-rounded panel with varied experiences and knowledge. The panel touched on some changes in models and culture that need to shift in order for OA to truly be accessible to researchers. The UNC-Chapel Hill pilot with Sage gave a positive example of how a library could directly help get research published OA and shined light on how regular assessment and communication play a role in success.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/nhZJcJwoNBLH8Kzj7

Diving In ERM First: Re-thinking Electronic Resources and Print Materials Management With FOLIO

This presentation was accurately described by its abstract. The presentation gave a look at how two libraries are making use of what FOLIO’s ERM offers and what additional tools they found useful. Missouri State leveraged the migration to overhaul their existing processes for a better outcome. Both libraries indicated that if they had to migrate again, they would.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/jhryJb9QzpKgknyMW

Close EnCOUNTERs of the 5th Kind

Besides having a catchy title, this session was true to its abstract. It covers University of Florida’s track to a better usage system, from committee start to info gathering to workflow and final product. Communication was stressed as an important piece to make sure you are creating something that will be beneficial to its intended users.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/8PQz9frgGAQLXSnGe

Zombies!  (just kidding, it’s e-resources)

This was a good entry level introduction to ER Librarianship.  Joe Marciniak covered duties related to ERs in an accessible way.  He also gave examples of what positions might look like along with how to read in between job description lines and what questions to ask.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/XW2BDxuf85cPPqg2M

My Five favorite concurrent sessions from the 2020 virtual Charleston Conference (and why) / My Five Big Takeaways from the 2020 virtual Charleston Conference

Reported by Jenifer Holman (Hope College) 

The 2020 Charleston Conference presentations posed big questions and shared best practices.  These presentations each had important takeaways for me as an electronic resources librarian.

Change is Constant: Managing and Evolving Acquisitions Environment

I was impressed with how the presenters — Jennifer Culley, Cory Tucker, and Annette Day (University of Nevada Las Vegas) — navigated a major reorganization of UNLV’s acquisitions department.  Faced with retirements, personnel shortages, and an impending systems migration, the authors redoubled efforts at building core skills among staff as well as managers, a strategy that enabled them to nimbly move staff into roles best suited to each individual.  I was also heartened to learn about the priority given to staff communication, even with most working remotely.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/nz8u6RNrpS5eChi7t

A New Library Mindset: Long-Term Consequences of Library Collections at Times of Pandemic

Julia Gelfand (UCI) and Tony Lin (Irvine Valley College) led a lively discussion about pandemic-related policy changes.  Many attendees have seen an accelerated shift to electronic, a necessity as libraries pivot to support remote learning.  With hybrid learning here to stay, supporting both print and electronic resources with ever-shrinking budgets will continue to be a pain point for many libraries.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/rSfcaDaZZLaHh2zgz

Latin American Collections in the Time of COVID-19: Rethinking Collection Development, Diversity, and Equity

The presenters — Manuel Ostos (The Pennsylvania State University), Paloma Celis Carbajal (New York Public Library), Luis Gonzalez (Indiana University), Patricia Figueroa (Brown University) — cautioned that for scholars in disciplines that rely heavily on print (particularly Global and Latin American Studies), their long-term research needs may not be met if print acquisitions slow.  Ostos highlighted that research in these areas is mainly disseminated in print.  Librarians should note a recent resolution by SALALM (https://salalm.org/salalm-resolution-collection-development-in-the-time-of-covid-19/) and an ACRL statement (https://acrl.ala.org/acrlinsider/archives/20355) that further caution against de-investment in these areas.  We must continue collecting print resources from the Global South to further decolonize our collections.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/qPDjFAGHqweEgpPD2

Close EnCOUNTERs of the 5th Kind

The University of Florida’s Electronic Resources Unit did not let the pandemic deter them as they adjusted their workflows to COUNTER Code of Practice (COP) 5, in this session presented by Erin Gallagher, Doug Kiker, Pauline Bickford-Duane, and Beth Zavoyski (University of Florida). 

The presenters walked attendees through their process, beginning with an overview of the spreadsheets they use to capture manually-gathered use statistics.  After watching the COUNTER Foundation Class videos (https://www.projectcounter.org/counter-foundation-classes/), their remotely-working team re-imagined their workflows.  They adopted these COP5 metrics:  total item requests (TR_J1);  total item requests (full-text databases) or total item investigations (non-full-text databases) (TR_D1);  and unique title requests (TR_B1).  COP5 is a huge change;  the presenters gave an excellent overview of new best practices.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/8PQz9frgGAQLXSnGe

Zombies! (just kidding, it’s e-resources)

Lastly, when I saw the session title, I was hooked.  Joe Marciniak (Princeton University), provided solid advice for those aspiring to electronic resources work.  He organized his talk around the e-resources lifecycle, offering suggestions for parsing job ads and fielding interview questions.  He highlighted that e-resources responsibilities often cross departments, requiring excellent people skills.  This session is a must see for anyone interested in learning more about the breadth of e-resources work.  https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/meetings/virtual/XW2BDxuf85cPPqg2M.  

That’s all the reports we have room for in this issue.  Watch for more reports from the 2020 Charleston Conference in upcoming print issues of Against the Grain.  Presentation materials (PowerPoint slides, handouts, etc.) and recordings of most sessions are available to Conference Attendees on the Charleston Conference event site at https://2021charlestonconference.pathable.co/.  Or visit the Charleston Hub at https://www.charleston-hub.com/the-charleston-conference/. — KS 


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