Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Doctoral Candidate Wasim Ahmed visits Harvard University to meet Information School Alumni

Doctoral student Wasim Ahmed recently visited Harvard University to meet Information School Alumnus Ann Hall who is the Director of Communication at The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. 

Ann studied at the Information School from 1990 to 1991 graduating with an MSc in Information Studies, where she was a student with our current Head of School, Professor Peter Bath.

Wasim noted that it was a great opportunity to look around the iconic Harvard Campus with a dinner at the famous Grendel’s Den at Harvard Square, and was very grateful for the visit.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Doctoral Candidate Wasim Ahmed delivers keynote talk at Social Media Conference at Boston University College of Communication (USA)

Doctoral student Wasim Ahmed delivered a keynote talk on social media research methods and software at Boston University College of Communication. The event, Making Social Media Data Matter, was run by Professor Jacob Groshek and included talks from world renowned experts who work between the intersection of media and academia.


The event was very well attended from across academia, industry, and government and included members from organisations such as the United Nations. Wasim thanked his family for continued support and noted that the event was at the forefront of academic research methods and social media research tools. Wasim is supervised by Profesor Peter Bath, Dr Laura Sbaffi, and Dr Gianluica Demartini. Wasim is a doctoral student in the Health Informatics Research group

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Information School Society Launch Event

To celebrate the launch of the iSchool Society, a coffee afternoon was held on the 6th of October in the iSpace. This is the first official Information School society registered with the Students Union. Postgraduate taught and research students had the opportunity to vote for future events and to sign up for membership. One of the key aims is to bring together postgraduate taught and postgraduate research students in take part in inclusive social events.


The committee is formed of four postgraduate research students as followed: Marc Bonne (President), Liliana Garcia (Secretary), Wasim Ahmed (Publicity and Inclusion Officer), and Itzelle Medina (Treasurer). The Information School Society has a Facebook page where you can keep up to dates with events, and a Twitter account which will contain information on any event cancellations or alterations. Membership can be purchased from the website of the society.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

What do professionals supporting bibliometrics need to know?

The first in-depth study of bibliometrics work has identified the key things that professionals need to know to work at different levels of specialism in this area.

It is hoped this will help define training needs and improve recruitment.

View the published research.

View the latest version of the competency model.

The work was by Andrew Cox and Laura Sbaffi, with colleague Sabrina Petersohn, Bergische Universität Wuppertal, Germany and Lizzie Gadd, from Loughborough University. It was commissioned by the lis-Bibliometrics group and funded by Elsevier Research International.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Information School Contribution to Information Economy Report


Last week saw the release of the UNCTAD Information Economy Report for 2017. This is a flagship report that is distributed amongst policy makers globally and often sets the agenda for policy around ICT and digital in developing countries. This years' focus is on ‘Digitalization, Trade and Development’. 

                     

Information School lecturer Christopher Foster has been closely involved in this years report, contributing to chapters which explore the practical and policy implications of digitalisation in small firms. This work, which draws on his research examines the current state of digitalisation within small exporting firms and some of the potential gains and challenges related to digital exclusion, platforms and automation. His background paper on the topic "Digitalisation and Trade: What Hope for Lower Income Countries?" is now available.

The wider Information Economy Report provides an extensive outline of the latest thinking on digitalisation including exploring topics such as future automation technologies, online work and a consideration of what jobs and skills are important in this changing economy.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Dr Paul Reilly recognised as Dedicated Outstanding Mentor by University of Sheffield

Senior Lecturer Dr Paul Reilly has been recognised by the University of Sheffield's Research and Innovation Service as a Dedicated Outstanding Mentor. His nomination can be read here.

One of Paul's mentees wrote this about his mentoring skills:

“It made me reflect on my options and I feel that now I have agreed formal timelines, I am more likely to action my ambition to be a P.I on a project, sooner. I think it is reasonable to say that I would have applied to be a P.I at some point, but feel the support has really pushed me on, and also helped me realise that there are other options open to me.”

Friday, 6 October 2017

Information School staff visit Bletchley Park

On Friday 31st August 2017, members of the Information School (Dr Ana Vasconcelos, Prof Paul Clough and Dr Simon Wakeling) and Professor David Ellis (Department of Information Studies, University of Aberystwyth) visited Bletchley Park to meet with staff and discuss potential collaborative research activities.



Following an initial discussion about the role of Bletchley Park in WWII – home of the top-secret codebreakers and what is now GCHQ – the visitors were provided with examples of archival materials held at Bletchley, such as the cataloguing system maintained with index cards, examples of intercepted coded messages and synthesised highlights created each day and sent to people such as Winston Churchill. They also toured the site at Bletchley Park, which is a major UK visitor attraction and film location for the Oscar-nominated film “The Imitation Game”. 



Thanks go to Dr David Kenyon (research historian) and Peronel Craddock (Head of Collections and Exhibitions) from Bletchley Park Trust.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

PhD student and supervisors from the Information School win second prize in Best Paper competition at TPDL'17

David Walsh, a part-time PhD student at the Information School (also works as a Senior Lecturer at Edge Hill University) has won second prize for Best Paper at the International Conference on Theory and Practice of Digital Libraries 2017 (TPDL'17) in Thessaloniki, Greece.


David's paper explored categories of visitor to the National Liverpool Museums website via a large-scale museum user survey in which data on a wide range of user characteristics was collected to provide well founded definitions for the user group's motivations, tasks, engagement, and domain knowledge. The results highlighted that the general public and non-professional users make up the majority of users and allow us to clearly define these two groups. David is supervised by Paul Clough and Jonathan Foster from Sheffield and Mark Hall from Edge Hill.

Walsh D., Hall M., Clough P., Foster J. (2017) The Ghost in the Museum Website: Investigating the General Public’s Interactions with Museum Websites. In: Kamps J., Tsakonas G., Manolopoulos Y., Iliadis L., Karydis I. (eds) Research and Advanced Technology for Digital Libraries. TPDL 2017. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 10450. Springer.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

PhD student Emily Nunn on her work placement at the British Library

My name is Emily Nunn and I am just starting my third year as a PhD student in the Information School. Over the summer, I completed a one-month placement at the British Library, conducting a piece of research for them on open access to scholarly research outside academia. Financial support for the placement was part of my PhD funding from the White Rose College of the Arts and Humanities (WRoCAH), who provide great opportunities for research students to undertake placements with external organisations.

I found the placement through social media (which is why I would recommend that PhD students give Twitter a try). Torsten Reimer, the Head of Research Services at the British Library, contacted me after seeing information about my doctoral research, and we worked out a placement that would be beneficial to both of us.


The British Library are currently working on exciting new projects to develop their support for open access. As a national library, they have a responsibility to provide access to resources not only to researchers, but to a range of different stakeholders outside the academy (for instance, charities, practitioners, small businesses, citizen researchers and patients). However, we only have limited understanding of how OA might benefit these groups – something I am exploring in my PhD. Therefore, the BL asked me to conduct a series of interviews with members of staff at medical charities, to find out their views on both OA and the British Library itself. 

I was made to feel very welcome by the team at the BL, especially by Torsten and his colleague Matt Hunt, and had a great time whizzing around London on the tube visiting various medical charities. Thanks to all the enthusiastic participants who gave their time (and biscuits) so generously, I ended up with a huge amount of interview data to transcribe, and a lot of new ideas.
I also got the chance to attend a couple of events for PhD and placement students at the BL, including a ‘one minute thesis’ session, which meant that I was kept very busy.

I produced a report with recommendations for how the BL could support OA outside academia, which I hope will help them in their future work in this area. I am pleased to have been invited back in the new year to present my findings to BL staff, and talk to them some more about their projects. The placement really helped me develop my thinking on how to make my PhD research useful to libraries and other organisations, and will make an important contribution to my thesis.

On a less academic note, the staff canteen at the British Library was very good and cheap, and it was lovely being able to spend a month in central London, with so many galleries, theatres and things to do right on my doorstep. I would highly recommend the experience to other research students, especially if you are able to get financial support. 

Monday, 2 October 2017

Dr Elisa Serafinelli to present at 'Ways of Being in the Digital Age' review conference

Research Associate Dr Elisa Serafinelli is due to present her recent paper 'Mobile Mediated Visualities: An Empirical Study of Visual Practices on Instagram', co-authored by Professor Mikko Villi from the University of Jyväskylä, at the 'Ways of Being in the Digital Age' review conference at the University of Liverpool. This conference will close the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) review.

Dr Serafinelli's paper discusses how social platforms and smart mobile devices are affecting individuals’ visual, social and digital practices. In particular, it examines the social exchange of photographs online in order to advance an in-depth reading of contemporary mobile media. In its conclusions, this paper offers a conceptual apparatus that can help to understand the visual hyper-representation of social practices exemplified by the current trend of giving to everything a visual justification.

You can find out more about the conference here.