Like WOW! Ruth Knight, Anthony Watkinson’s high-flying daughter, has been appointed The Royal Household’s first Head of Sustainability. Ruth previously worked in similar roles at English Heritage, the Church of England, and the Greater London Authority. King Charles III has been a long-time advocate for environmental sustainability, and Ruth’s appointment will help strengthen this commitment across The Royal Family’s properties and practices. cool!
And here’s another cool story! The eagle-eyed Ramune Kubilius sends us word of the retirement of JP Marton at UVM Davis Center. JP Marton, a retired custodian at the University of Vermont, is a well-loved figure in the community. He noticed that students had a passion for reading, so he created the Book Nook in Brennan’s Pub. The Book Nook is a collection of donated books that encourages the exchange of literature and ideas. Since it started in 2010, it has tripled in size. Check out the article to learn more about JP and the literary haven at the Davis Center: Beloved UVM Davis Center Employee JP Marton Retires After 15 Years, But His “Book Nook” is Just Getting Started
Martin Paul Eve was the keynote speaker at Charleston Virtual on November 27, 2023. His topic: “Contains scenes of mild peril: the state of digital preservation across seven million articles”.
While we are focusing on current political issues, social platforms, and personal presumptions, we seem to be ignoring issues like persistence of the scholarly record. “Digital preservation underpins the persistence of scholarly links and citations through the DOI system. But we do not currently know, at scale, the extent to which articles assigned a DOI are adequately preserved,” says Paul Martin Eve. In this talk, he described efforts to construct a database of preservation information from original archival sources and then to examine the preservation statuses of 7,438,037 DOIs in a random sample. Their work reveals an alarming preservation deficit. Only 0.96% of Crossref members (n=204) can be confirmed to digitally preserve over 75% of their content in 3 or more of the archives that we studied. A slightly larger proportion – 8.5% (n=1,797) – preserved over 50% of their content in 2 or more archives. Many members – 57.7% (n=12,257) – though, only met the threshold of having 25% of their material in a single archive. Most worryingly, 32.9% (n=6,982) of Crossref members seem not to have any adequate digital preservation in place, against the recommendations of the Digital Preservation Coalition. In light of these findings, Eve suggests a number of currently lacking infrastructural mechanisms that we need to improve the state of digital preservation. If we want the digital scholarly record to persist beyond the twenty-first century, we are still quite some way from guaranteeing this. This is of paramount importance in our world which seems largely dominated by politics and product ads! Martin Paul Eve is Principal R&D Developer at Crossref. He is also the Professor of Literature, Technology and Publishing at Birkbeck, University of London. Martin was also Visiting Professor of Digital Humanities at Sheffield Hallam University from 2019 until 2022. Previously he was a Senior Lecturer at Birkbeck, a Lecturer in English at the University of Lincoln, UK, and an Associate Tutor/Lecturer at the University of Sussex, where he completed his Ph.D. Martin is the external examiner/validator for MPhil degrees at the University of Cambridge.