CLIR Issues Number 118
Number 118 • July/August 2017
ISSN 1944-7639 (online version)
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Qatar National Library Joins Global Network of Partners Contributing to Digital Library of the Middle East
Qatar National Library (QNL) is the newest contributing partner to the Digital Library of the Middle East (DLME). In a memorandum of understanding signed at the International Federation of Library Assocations and Institutions (IFLA) annual conference on August 21, CLIR and QNL agreed to cooperate to develop, enhance, and make available digitized cultural heritage content through the DLME.
The DLME is a collaborative effort that aspires to create a sustainable digital environment for the cultural heritage of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, while providing an array of applications, tools, and descriptions that enrich the content, facilitate sophisticated inquiry, and engage with the widest possible community of practice. (Read more about the aims of the DLME in Chuck Henry’s August 31, 2017, blog.)
QNL will join efforts to advance understanding of the MENA region’s cultural heritage, support its preservation, and share content and best practices. The MOU also calls for collaboration on efforts to educate a worldwide audience and promote respect for the historical record, activate likeminded populations and raise awareness through outreach, and develop models for international cooperation.
“Our partnership with Qatar National Library marks a pivotal turn for the Digital Library of the Middle East,” said CLIR President Charles Henry. “The technical expertise, content, and insight that QNL brings to this project are extraordinary and we are delighted to work in this shared vision with the library’s distinguished staff and leadership who will contribute integrally to the success of the project.”
“We are delighted to be a founding member of the DLME and to be a partner with CLIR,” said QNL Executive Director Sohair Wastawy. “The history of the Middle East is a cornerstone of the history of civilization and preserving it is not only a cultural mandate but also an obligation we have toward future generations.”
Peter Herdrich, co-founder of The Antiquities Coalition, a core DLME founder, said, “Qatar National Library is an unrivaled international partner for the Digital Library of the Middle East. We share the goal of designing and implementing solutions and creating a cooperative community in the MENA region in service to the cultural record. This is an exciting development.”
Qatar National Library serves as a steward of Qatar’s national heritage by collecting, preserving and making available the country’s recorded history. In its role as a research library with a preeminent heritage collection, QNL fosters and promotes greater global insight into the history and culture of the Gulf region. As a public library, QNL provides equal access for all Qatari residents to an environment that supports creativity, independent decision-making and cultural development. Through all its functions, QNL provides leadership to the country’s library and cultural heritage sector. The library will open a new building, designed by Rem Koolhaas, in November 2017.
In the August 2017 issue of Archive Journal, seven early career scholars—most recipients of the Mellon Fellowship for Dissertation Research in Original Sources—explore the nature of archives and shifting approaches to institutional knowledge and interpretation of sources. Drawing on their experiences in both unconventional settings and traditional archives, the authors address practices, methods, and theories of archival research through the lens of the work and training of the dissertation fellowship. As volume editors Nicole Ferraiolo and R. A. Kashanipour observe, the fellows’ experiences show how archives reveal, elide, or submerge categories of historical analysis.
The articles highlight archival models and frameworks that challenge traditional boundaries and approaches; describe efforts to develop a new model of archive that is community focused and grounded in the values of the groups whose legacy the project seeks to preserve; explore how censorship and silences in the archival record can be correlated to create new repositories of knowledge; and examine state power as it relates to the legacies of violence in the archive. The editors express their hope that the volume will promote conversations across disciplines “to consider how critical issues central to the nature, construction, and experience of the archive can reveal not only new sources but also raise fundamental questions about the definition of archives themselves in the production of historical knowledge.”
Cultural heritage professionals planning projects to digitize rare or unique materials will find a wealth of useful information through DLF’s Digitizing Special Formats wiki. Topics cover the range of project management, from designing a digital preservation plan to enhancing access and discoverability, to copyright and ethics. The site also offers numerous links to funding resources, education and training opportunities, and information from digitization service providers.
We hope you will find this a useful resource. We encourage you to suggest resources for inclusion; send recommendations to DigiWiki@clir.org.
If you can’t join us for the 2017 DLF Forum and affiliated events in Pittsburgh October 22–25, you can still follow the action. Keynotes for the DLF Forum, Pre-Conference, and NDSA’s Digital Preservation 2017 will be livestreamed, as will the DLF closing plenary panel, thanks to the generous support of Carnegie Mellon University Libraries.
This year’s DLF Forum Pre-Conference is being organized in collaboration with the HBCU Library Alliance. It will focus on digital library pedagogy as a common mission and common ground between DLF Liberal Arts Colleges/programs and Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Atlanta University Center Woodruff Library Director Loretta Parham will open the pre-Conference with her keynote, “Staffing for Our Digital Library: The Promise, the Plan, and Our Response” at 9:30 am ET, Oct. 22. (See HBCU Fellowship opportunity, below.)
Afrofuturist writer and community organizer Rasheedah Phillips, Esq. will kick off the DLF Forum at 9:00 am ET, Oct. 23, with a keynote address on place-based documentation and cultural memory, alternate conceptions of time, and the potential of digital libraries to support and be shaped by marginalized people’s work to imagine different futures.
Digital archivist and ProjectARCC founder Eira Tansey will open Digital Preservation 2017 at 4:00 pm ET, Oct. 25. In accordance with the NDSA conference theme, “Preservation is Political,” Tansey will speak on the future of climate justice in the context of the relationship between environmental policy and records preservation.
The full conference schedule is available at https://forum2017.diglib.org. We invite you to also follow along on Twitter (#DLFforum, #dlfLAC, and #digipres17) and to view community notes at https://goo.gl/f6zY7M. (The title of each document corresponds to the session code on the schedule.)
Stay tuned for the September release of A Splendid Torch: Learning and Teaching in Today’s Academic Libraries, edited by Jodi Reeves Eyre, John C. Maclachlan, and Christa Williford. Six essays, written collaboratively by current and former CLIR postdoctoral fellows, explore the contributions that today’s academic libraries—as providers of resources, professional support, and space—are making to learning and teaching. Topics include the continuing evolution of the learning commons, information literacy instruction, digital humanities teaching in libraries, spatial literacy, opportunities for collaboration in digital special collections, and 3-D printing and pedagogy.
DLF Forum HBCU Fellowships: Through a generous grant from the Institute for Library and Museum Services in support of our collaboration with the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Library Alliance, DLF is offering new funding for at least 21 full fellowships to the 2017 Forum and Pre-Conference. HBCU Fellowships include free registration to both events and are designed to offset or completely cover travel and lodging costs, up to a total of $1,200 per person. The application deadline is September 7, and we encourage all who meet our eligibility requirements to apply!
Priority will be given to HBCU Library Alliance-affiliated librarians, faculty, and other employees of HBCUs; library practitioners with HBCU backgrounds or experience who work in liberal arts colleges or serve undergraduates in other types of institutions; and current HBCU students interested in library and information careers. DLF also welcomes more general applications from people who can articulate a connection to the theme of the pre-conference and are members of groups historically underrepresented among library, cultural heritage, and information professions.
For more information, see: https://forum2017.diglib.org/about-fellowships/. HBCU Fellowship winners will join 18 previously announced DLF Forum Fellows, listed here: https://forum2017.diglib.org/about-fellowships/fellows/
Mellon Fellowships for Dissertation Research in Original Sources: Fellowships support dissertation research in the humanities or related social sciences in original sources. About 15 fellowships are awarded annually, each providing a stipend of $2,000 per month for periods ranging from 9-12 months, between June 2018 and August 2019. Applications must be received by 5 pm Eastern time on Monday, December 4, 2017. For more information on the fellowships and a link to the online application form, click here. Fellowships are supported with funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Rovelstad Scholarship in International Librarianship 2018: The scholarship provides funding for a student of library and information science to attend the World Library and Information Congress of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA). The 2018 IFLA annual meeting will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 24–30. Complete applications must be submitted using CLIR’s online application form by January 26, 2018.
Host a Postdoctoral Fellow: CLIR is seeking hosts for
Host institutions benefit from the expertise of accomplished scholars who can invigorate approaches to collection use and teaching, contribute field-specific knowledge, and provide insight into the future of scholarship.