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CLIR/DLF Announce Data Curation Fellowships

Contact:          Christa Williford, Program Officer


CLIR/DLF Announce New Data Curation Fellowships

New program to train fellows to manage data in the natural and social sciences

March 29, 2012, Washington, DC-The Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) has received a $679,827 grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to help launch a new CLIR/DLF Data Curation Fellowship Program. The program, an expansion of CLIR’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program in Academic Libraries, will provide recent Ph.Ds with professional development, education, and training opportunities in data curation for the natural and social sciences.

The fellowship will encourage the development of highly skilled and knowledgeable specialists through experience gained during two-year postdoctoral fellowships. The aim is to create a cadre of scholarly practitioners who understand not only the nature and processes of their own disciplines but also how their research data are organized, transmitted, and manipulated.

“As academic research becomes increasingly data-intensive, we need skilled professionals trained in both science and data curation,” said Joshua M. Greenberg, Program Director at the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. “CLIR and DLF’s visionary fellowship program recognizes that libraries have a unique and important role to play in the training and employment of this new cohort of professionals.”

“We are encouraged by the confidence and support of the Sloan Foundation to fund the development of a professional cohort that can address these challenges concertedly and programmatically, and that will establish standards and protocols that can assure sustainable digital resources for the pursuit of new knowledge,” said CLIR President Charles Henry, who serves as a principal investigator with DLF Director Rachel Frick and Bryn Mawr College Chief Information Officer Elliott Shore.

For the program’s first cohort, CLIR is now recruiting six data curation fellows in cooperation with its partner institutions: Indiana University, Lehigh University, McMaster University, Purdue University, the University of California Los Angeles, and the University of Michigan. CLIR/DLF Data Curation Fellows and their colleagues in the Postdoctoral Fellowship for Academic Libraries program will attend a two-week immersion seminar at Bryn Mawr College in July 2012. The seminar will be followed by periodic online and in-person meetings throughout their fellowship appointments.

“This program recognizes the impact of the CLIR Fellows Program by extending it more deeply into the sciences and social sciences,” said Shore, who has led the educational component of the program since its inception in 2004. “Our Fellows have developed a strong track record in their work in libraries and cultural institutions, and as faculty helping to lead us forward in such areas as the digital humanities and the integration of the library and information technology with teaching, learning, and research.”

Information about the program and position descriptions are available at Applicants to the Fellowship program must have received a Ph.D. in a discipline no more than five years before applying (i.e., after April 1, 2007). All work toward the degree, including dissertation defense and final dissertation editing, must be completed before starting the fellowship. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled, but no later than June 30, 2012.

CLIR is an independent, nonprofit organization that forges strategies to enhance research, teaching, and learning environments in collaboration with libraries, cultural institutions, and communities of higher learning. It aims to promote forward-looking collaborative solutions that transcend disciplinary, institutional, professional, and geographic boundaries in support of the public good. The Digital Library Federation (DLF) is a consortium of libraries and related agencies that are pioneering the use of electronic-information technologies to extend their collections and services. DLF is a program of CLIR.

The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation is a philanthropic, not-for-profit grant making institution based in New York City. Established in 1934 by Alfred Pritchard Sloan Jr., then-President and Chief Executive Officer of General Motors, the Foundation makes grants in support of original research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and economic performance.

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