Finch, J. f., & Flenner, A. (2016). Using Data Visualization to Examine an Academic Library Collection. College & Research Libraries, 77(6), 765-778.
Visualizations of library data have been used to: • reveal relationships among subject areas for users. • illuminate circulation patterns. • suggest titles for weeding. • analyze citations and map scholarly communications
Each unit of data analyzed can be described as topical, asking “what.”6 • What is the number of courses offered in each major and minor? • What is expended in each subject area? • What is the size of the physical collection in each subject area? • What is student enrollment in each area? • What is the circulation in specific areas for one year?
libraries, if they are to survive, must rethink their collecting and service strategies in radical and possibly scary ways and to do so sooner rather than later. Anderson predicts that, in the next ten years, the “idea of collection” will be overhauled in favor of “dynamic access to a virtually unlimited flow of information products.” My note: in essence, the fight between Mark Vargas and the Acquisition/Cataloguing people
The library collection of today is changing, affected by many factors, such as demanddriven acquisitions, access, streaming media, interdisciplinary coursework, ordering enthusiasm, new areas of study, political pressures, vendor changes, and the individual faculty member following a focused line of research.
subject librarians may see opportunities in looking more closely at the relatively unexplored “intersection of circulation, interlibrary loan, and holdings.”
Using Visualizations to Address Library Problems
the difference between graphical representations of environments and knowledge visualization, which generates graphical representations of meaningful relationships among retrieved files or objects.
Exhaustive lists of data visualization tools include: • the DIRT Directory (http://dirtdirectory.org/categories/visualization) • Kathy Schrock’s educating through infographics (www.schrockguide.net/ infographics-as-an-assessment.html) • Dataviz list of online tools (www.improving-visualisation.org/case-studies/id=5)
Eugene O’Loughlin, National College of Ireland, is very helpful in composing the charts and is found here: https://youtu.be/4FyImh2G7N0.
p. 771 By looking at the data (my note – by visualizing the data), more questions are revealed, The visualizations provide greater comprehension than the two-dimensional “flatland” of the spreadsheets, in which valuable questions and insights are lost in the columns and rows of data.
By looking at data visualized in different combinations, library collection development teams can clearly compare important considerations in collection management: expenditures and purchases, circulation, student enrollment, and course hours. Library staff and administrators can make funding decisions or begin dialog based on data free from political pressure or from the influence of the squeakiest wheel in a department.
more on data visualization for the academic library in this IMS blog
The future of collaboration: Large-scale visualization
Henry Hwangbo http://usblogs.pwc.com/emerging-technology/the-future-of-collaboration-large-scale-visualization/
More data doesn’t automatically lead to better decisions. A shortage of skilled data scientists has hindered progress towards translation of information into actionable business insights. In addition, traditionally dense spreadsheets and linear slideshows are ineffective to present discoveries when dealing with Big Data’s dynamic nature. We need to evolve how we capture, analyze and communicate data.
Large-scale visualization platforms have several advantages over traditional presentation methods. They blur the line between the presenter and audience to increase the level of interactivity and collaboration. They also offer simultaneous views of both macro and micro perspectives, multi-user collaboration and real-time data interaction, and a limitless number of visualization possibilities – critical capabilities for rapidly understanding today’s large data sets.
Visualization walls enable presenters to target people’s preferred learning methods, thus creating a more effective communication tool. The human brain has an amazing ability to quickly glean insights from patterns – and great visualizations make for more efficient storytellers.
Grant: Visualizing Digital Scholarship in Libraries and Learning Spaces
Award amount: $40,000
Funder: Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Lead institution: North Carolina State University Libraries
Due date: 13 August 2017
Notification date: 15 September 2017
NC State University, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, invites proposals from institutions interested in participating in a new project for Visualizing Digital Scholarship in Libraries and Learning Spaces. The grant aims to 1) build a community of practice of scholars and librarians who work in large-scale multimedia to help visually immersive scholarly work enter the research lifecycle; and 2) overcome technical and resource barriers that limit the number of scholars and libraries who may produce digital scholarship for visualization environments and the impact of generated knowledge. Libraries and museums have made significant strides in pioneering the use of large-scale visualization technologies for research and learning. However, the utilization, scale, and impact of visualization environments and the scholarship created within them have not reached their fullest potential. A logical next step in the provision of technology-rich, visual academic spaces is to develop best practices and collaborative frameworks that can benefit individual institutions by building economies of scale among collaborators.
The project contains four major elements:
- An initial meeting and priority setting workshop that brings together librarians, scholars, and technologists working in large-scale, library and museum-based visualization environments.
- Scholars-in-residence at NC State over a multi-year period who pursue open source creative projects, working in collaboration with our librarians and faculty, with the potential to address the articulated limitations.
- Funding for modest, competitive block grants to other institutions working on similar challenges for creating, disseminating, validating, and preserving digital scholarship created in and for large-scale visual environments.
- A culminating symposium that brings together representatives from the scholars-in-residence and block grant recipient institutions to share and assess results, organize ways of preserving and disseminating digital products produced, and build on the methods, templates, and tools developed for future projects.
This call solicits proposals for block grants from library or museum systems that have visualization installations. Block grant recipients can utilize funds for ideas ranging from creating open source scholarly content for visualization environments to developing tools and templates to enhance sharing of visualization work. An advisory panel will select four institutions to receive awards of up to $40,000. Block grant recipients will also participate in the initial priority setting workshop and the culminating symposium. Participating in a block grant proposal does not disqualify an individual from later applying for one of the grant-supported scholar-in-residence appointments.
Applicants will provide a statement of work that describes the contributions that their organization will make toward the goals of the grant. Applicants will also provide a budget and budget justification.
Activities that can be funded through block grants include, but are not limited to:
- Commissioning work by a visualization expert
- Hosting a visiting scholar, artist, or technologist residency
- Software development or adaptation
- Development of templates and methodologies for sharing and scaling content utilizing open source software
- Student or staff labor for content or software development or adaptation
- Curricula and reusable learning objects for digital scholarship and visualization courses
- Travel (if necessary) to the initial project meeting and culminating workshop
- User research on universal design for visualization spaces
Funding for operational expenditures, such as equipment, is not allowed for any grant participant.
Send an application to email@example.com by the end of the day on 13 August 2017 that includes the following:
- Statement of work (no more than 1000 words) of the project idea your organization plans to develop, its relationship to the overall goals of the grant, and the challenges to be addressed.
- List the names and contact information for each of the participants in the funded project, including a brief description of their current role, background, expertise, interests, and what they can contribute.
- Project timeline.
- Budget table with projected expenditures.
- Budget narrative detailing the proposed expenditures
Selection and Notification Process
An advisory panel made up of scholars, librarians, and technologists with experience and expertise in large-scale visualization and/or visual scholarship will review and rank proposals. The project leaders are especially keen to receive proposals that develop best practices and collaborative frameworks that can benefit individual institutions by building a community of practice and economies of scale among collaborators.
Awardees will be selected based on:
- the ability of their proposal to successfully address one or both of the identified problems;
- the creativity of the proposed activities;
- relevant demonstrated experience partnering with scholars or students on visualization projects;
- whether the proposal is extensible;
- feasibility of the work within the proposed time-frame and budget;
- whether the project work improves or expands access to large-scale visual environments for users; and
- the participant’s ability to expand content development and sharing among the network of institutions with large-scale visual environments.
Awardees will be required to send a representative to an initial meeting of the project cohort in Fall 2017.
Awardees will be notified by 15 September 2017.
If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
–Mike Nutt Director of Visualization Services Digital Library Initiatives, NCSU Libraries