20 de marzo de 2017

Creating the leadership you seek - Five leadership development activities that will cultivate leadership from within your library

As early as 1986, academic librarians began anticipating the “graying of the profession” and predicting the impending crisis of workforce, particularly for leadership.[1] They commonly suggest that the mass departure of baby boomers from the workforce will leave libraries struggling to find qualified leaders with the vision and knowledge necessary to propel the profession into the 21st century. Thirty years later, librarians are still concerned about not having sufficient future leadership. Leadership forums at national, regional, and local conferences and meetings often include one or more sessions that discuss the issue. However, besides mentorship and delayed retirement, very few viable long-term strategies are offered for handling the potential loss of leadership.

One solution not readily offered but worthy of strong consideration is positioning the qualified, capable workforce already employed in libraries to fill those gaps. This is accomplishable through five leadership activities: developing organization-specific leadership competencies, identifying individuals with leadership potential, honing leadership skills through professional development, creating opportunities for leadership, and succession planning.

Develop organization-specific leadership competencies

Developing leadership competencies that are measurable, justifiable, and easily attached to other performance indicators (e.g., annual review) allows libraries to benchmark leadership progression. To achieve this, library administrators might consider working with the library or university’s human resources manager or a consultant to develop a set of core leadership competencies that are essential for potential leaders working in their library. This list would consist of general and organizational-culture specific competencies that address the skills and personal attributes necessary to provide leadership within a specific organization.[2] Some commonly listed attributes for leadership include:[3, 4]
  • flexibility, adaptability, and a willingness to accept and manage change;
  • visionary, strategic planning, and resource management;
  • cultural competence;
  • advocacy;
  • ability to set priorities, manage time, and multi-task;
  • innovation and collaboration;
  • self-awareness, self-knowledge, and emotional intelligence;
  • decision-making and problem-solving ability;
  • understanding of library trends; and
  • influence.
Identifying potential leaders

Working to identify potential leaders can prove challenging in academic libraries because not everyone with the potential for leadership has received an opportunity to demonstrate that capacity. Additionally, libraries often allow a great deal of autonomy, which does not always provide staffers the occasion to showcase their leadership skills. As a result, library administrators should make every effort to look beyond those librarians with assigned leadership roles to ascertain if other individuals with emergent leadership characteristics demonstrate the potential for future library leadership.

John Lubans Jr. describes these individuals as organizational spark plugs. A spark plug is someone with high energy, emotional intelligence, good humor, people skills, and a can-do attitude. They are highly promotable because they help the organization realize important objectives, act on good ideas, initiate, need little encouragement, follow through, and collaborate.”[5]

Honing leadership

Once the library administration has identified the individuals who show potential for library leadership in the future, they should begin honing their leadership skills through professional development. Both internal and external programs can serve to address leadership development. Internal programs will allow the library to customize the training towards their organizational culture and personalize the programs to address individual strengths and weaknesses. Internal library leadership development programs can be highly effective and, depending on structure, a budget-friendly method to develop leadership within a particular library.

Additionally, internal programs allow the library the flexibility to develop individuals over time and can vary in format. For example, Washington State University (WSU) Libraries created an internal leadership training program that offered a combination of presentations on leadership style, mini case studies, and discussion group activities.

Because the program was maintained internally, WSU was able to change topics and build on individual skills from one cohort to the next.[6]

External leadership training programs are also an option for developing individuals within the library who demonstrate leadership potential. External leadership programs give individuals an opportunity to learn from industry leaders and develop a network of peers to use as resources. Moreover, because the pool of prospective applicants is larger for association-level leadership programs, they can also target specific groups of individuals, such as minorities or beginning professionals.

Within the field of library science, many associations host librarian leadership programs that focus on leadership at various career stages. ALA sponsors a leadership institute that provides a four-day immersion into leadership preparation and personal development. This institute, led by past-ALA president Maureen Sullivan and former ACRL content strategist Kathryn Deiss, offers structured learning focused on the midcareer librarian (five years or more) with a leadership background and an interest in greater leadership roles.

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) offers two leadership institutes. The Leadership & Career Development Program is aimed at midcareer, ethnic minority librarians and The ARL Leadership Fellows Program which targets executive library leaders. These programs are unique because they function over an extended period of time—18 and 12 months, respectively. Numerous other national, regional, and university associations offer leadership training opportunities for librarians demonstrating the potential for leadership, including Harvard Graduate School for Education.

Creating opportunities for leadership

Once you have identified individuals in your library with leadership potential and given them opportunities to develop their leadership skills through either internal or external initiatives, then allow them to lead. This may be challenging for libraries with a hierarchical organizational structure because libraries that follow the higher education model of fixed appointments and long-tenured staff, may not have the flexibility to create new or short-term positions. However, the opportunities still can exist.

For example, the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center (RWWL) created two internal coordinator positions. In the case of the RWWL, librarians on the research and instruction team who show talent for leadership positions are given the opportunity to apply, interview, and potentially serve as either a coordinator of selection or instruction. The coordinator position lasts for three years, and the appointee oversees one or more library projects in the area. The coordinator is responsible for all administrative duties associated with position, including developing budgets and annual reports. Coordinators are reviewed annually by members of their team and the unit head. This process allows the coordinator to benefit from increased management exposure and accountability on a leadership level while assuming an opportunity to “try on” leadership before committing to it.[7]

Another option for libraries in close proximity to each other or who are a part of the same regional association is to partner to provide short-term leadership opportunities.

For example, Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI) and Northern Pacific Library Association could create and maintain a library leadership exchange program. Ideally, individuals with potential for leadership who work for libraries without open positions or who are not ready to assume a full-time position will gain some leadership experience by working temporarily with a different organization.

Recently, the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries (ASERL) partnered with the HBCU Alliance to facilitate a leadership exchange program. In this partnership, librarians participating in the program spent two weeks at the partnering institution working in various leadership capacities. Similar programs also exist outside of the library profession. The Memphis Leadership Exchange and the International Visitor Leadership Program support similar arrangements for longer periods of time.

Succession planning

Finally, libraries must commit to the long-term leadership potential of these individuals by planning for them to lead the organization in the future. This succession planning not only benefits the individual, but the organization benefits from continual, effective leadership, while knowing that the current leadership may retire or leave for other positions.

Succession planning, like strategic planning, is a forecast of how the library plans to respond to environmental changes. Successful succession planning shows the current library leadership and those with leadership potential what the staffing needs might be so that together both groups can begin to prepare for those needs. For that reason, best practices for succession planning suggest that organizations:[8]
  • keep it the plan simple, easy to use, and readily accessible;
  • open process to all employees;
  • secure involvement of all key players;
  • analyze the organization’s workforce;
  • identify and prioritize workforce gaps;
  • identify individuals within the organization who might makeup the pipeline; and
  • follow-up with individuals identified through career planning and mentoring.
The process focuses on preparing the library to handle potential workforce gaps rather than prepping individuals to fill specific jobs so that individuals throughout the library are ready to lead. The succession planning process also has the potential to foster mentorships between individuals with current leadership responsibility and individuals with the potential to assume that responsibility. While succession planning is mentioned last, it does not necessarily come last. In fact, it can actually be the reason why the above-mentioned strategies are implemented.


In an effort to lure those interested in managerial leadership, verbiage can be added to employment descriptions that briefly explain the leadership training possibilities connected to that position. Providing professional development opportunities and whole staff in-service events will allow time for those who are interested in leadership to gain the experience needed, while serving as a springboard for identifying those employees who may not have considered leadership.

Identifying personal characteristics and personality traits early on will give library administrators the information they need to build leadership programs that will hone in on employees’ personal strength, which could potentially develop them for leadership opportunities. Once employees’ self-efficacy is increased, they are more likely to believe in their capabilities to lead and as a result, pursue leadership positions.

Administrators across the profession must work cohesively to ensure that adequate leadership is in place to maintain and properly manage the vast amounts of information accessible in the world’s libraries. No longer does the luxury exist where library administrators can solely focus on the needs of their particular program, they must now offer training and development programs that will instill the skills in future library leadership professionals needed to be successful in the field as a whole. Libraries within the same system or in close proximity can work collaboratively to create projects that provide leadership opportunities, while increasing the possibility of networking and sharing ideas.

Ultimately, libraries already employ the leaders that they seek, they need only to cultivate the potential of leadership within.


1. J. Berry , “Problems of a “graying” profession,” Library Journal, 1116. Google Scholar
2. Beth McNeil , “Core competencies for libraries and library staff,” (Chicago: ALA, 2001): 49–62. Google Scholar
3. Shorette Ammons-Stephens, Holly J. Cole, Catherine Fraser Riehle, William H. Weare , “Developing core leadership competencies for the library profession,” Library Leadership & Management 23, no. 2 (2009): 63–74. Google Scholar
4. P. Hernon, R. R. Powell, A. P. Young , “University library directors in the Association of Research Libraries: The next generation, part one,” College & Research Libraries, 62, no. 2, 116–46. Google Scholar
5. John Lubans Jr.. , “Leading from the middle: The Spark Plug: A Leader’s Catalyst for Change,” Library Leadership & Management 23, no. 2 (2009): 88. Google Scholar
6. Alex N. Merrill, Elizabeth Blakesley Lindsay , “Growing your own: Building an internal leadership training program,” Library Leadership & Management 23, no. 2 (2009): 85–87. Google Scholar
7. R. Odom, personal communication.
8. Pat Hawthorne , “Succession planning and management: A key leadership responsibility emerges,” Texas Library Journal 87, no. 1 (2011): 8–12. Google Scholar

Autor: Kimberley Bugg
Twitter: <@CityTechLibrary>
Fuente: <http://crln.acrl.org/>

Publishing and sharing data papers can increase impact and benefits researchers, publishers, funders and libraries

Image credit: DATA by Janet McKnight.
This work is licensed under a CC BY 2.0 license.
The process of compiling and submitting data papers to journals has long been a frustrating one to the minority of researchers that have tried. Fiona Murphy, part of a project team working to automate this process, outlines why publishing data papers is important and how open data can be of benefit to all stakeholders across scholarly communications and higher education.

Giving Researchers Credit for their Data – or ‘Data2Paper’ as we’re now more snappily calling it – is a cloud-based app which uses existing DataCite and ORCID-derived metadata to automate the process of compiling and submitting a data paper to a journal without the researcher having to leave the research space or wrestle directly with the journal’s submission system (an occasional source of frustration):

Sound too good to be true? Well, at the time of writing it is. However, a small project team – led by Bodleian Libraries and F1000Research – is working hard to make it reality.

Part of Jisc’s Research Data Spring initiative, Data2Paper is now in Phase 3. We’ve built on work done by the WDS-RDA Publishing Data Workflow Working Group on data publishing, run a survey for stakeholders to establish the baseline demand, and produced a (so far silent) demonstration video. Now we’re building a live end-to-end workflow for testing with real authors, data sets, repositories and journals. Partners for this phase include the University of Manchester, Mendeley Data and Elsevier, but we’ve also had helpful input from ORCID, Figshare, Project THOR and SURF as well as expressions of interest from a wide range of publishers and repositories.

What are we hoping to achieve with the app? As well as improving the lives of researchers wishing to publish data papers using data sets, we believe it could prove beneficial to a range of key stakeholders:
  • Funders – this service encourages better research data management
  • Researchers are more likely to engage with the repositories if they are likely to derive a citable research object at the cost of a few minutes’ work. There would be additional metrics available, as well as better information about re-use. It should also encourage better data citation practices than are currently in evidence
  • Publishers – can secure a pipeline of (better quality) data papers directly to journal submission systems
  • Higher education institutions – this is an additional opportunity to demonstrate research impact and derive metrics
  • Repositories – improves their range of services and represents an opportunity to engage researchers to not only comply but also engage with data management and deposition
  • ORCID – this is also an opportunity to enhance ORCID’s value proposition by increasing its directly useful function for both researchers and HEIs (for instance, ORCID can automatically inform the researcher/institution directly if a data paper is published).
And what’s the wider context for publishing data papers? Those who have been keeping an eye on this topic will be well aware that the debate as to whether the ‘data paper’ and ‘data journal’ are more than a transitional or transient scholarly communication format and medium is still ongoing (see, for instance, the session at SciDataCon in September: ‘Do we need data journals?’). And currently very few researchers are publishing their data – it simply hasn’t been integrated into their training, workflows or incentive schemes. Funders, publishers and other organisations such as DataCite have been working hard to raise awareness of the benefits in general terms to ‘science’, but it’s been difficult to make the case to the individual for taking the time to pull together a data paper.

However, in recent years, evidence has been amassing which appears to correlate increased impact of primary research with the discoverability of its underlying data (e.g. Piwowar and Vision’s analysis that specifically concentrated on micro-array data) and the research landscape has been adapting accordingly. For instance:
  • The Research Data Alliance fosters a number of working groups designed to provide practical and scientifically rigorous support to encourage and enable researchers to share their data (e.g. Data Citation WG Recommendations, WDS-RDA Publishing Data Workflows WG and RDA-CODATA Summer Schools in Data Science WG)
  • Thomson Reuters has been developing its Data Citation Index with a view to building the analytics and services it anticipates will be needed for future research assessment and evaluation
  • In June 2016, Earth System Science Data became the first data journal to achieve an impact factor. At 8.286, it already ranks 2nd in Meteorology & Atmospheric Sciences and 3rd in Geosciences, Multidisciplinary. This is a significant event in data publishing communities as it has implications for perceived – and measurable – value, publisher interest and potential revenue streams (as data paper publishing itself starts to gain traction via Article Publication Charges).
Finally, the UK Concordat on Open Research Data was published on 28 July 2016 with a foreword by Jo Johnson, Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation. Although not an official state document as such, it has been drawn up by a wide range of stakeholders and it makes strong representations about the significance of open data by way of its Ten Principles. Principle Five, for instance, includes:
“Production of open research data should be acknowledged formally as a legitimate output of the research process and should be recognised as such by employers, research funders and others in contributing to an individual’s professional profile in relation to promotion, research assessment and research funding decisions. Such formal recognition should be accompanied by the development and use of responsible metrics that allow the collection and tracking of data use and impact. In general, data citations should be accorded appropriate importance in the scholarly record relative to citations of other research objects, such as publications.”
As these initiatives and policy influences further permeate the research community ecosystem, it does feel as though some real transformations will begin to take effect. It remains the case, however, that both social and technical drivers and barriers need to be understood and addressed in order for the majority of researchers to take the view that sharing their open data is – usually – the right thing to do.

To that end, we’d love to hear from anyone who would like more information about our app or is keen to work with us – so do get in touch!

Autor: Fiona Murphy
Twitter: <@DrFionaLM>
Fuente: <http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/>

19 de marzo de 2017

Todos somos responsables de la creación del hábito de lectura en los más jóvenes

La lectura es muy importante en la vida de las personas. Ella ayuda a crear sociedades formadas e informadas. Ahora bien, crear el hábito lector a esas personas debe empezar desde una edad temprana… y el hogar, la escuela y la biblioteca tienen un papel fundamental en hacer que los jóvenes adquieran el gusto lector. Todos somos responsables del futuro de los más pequeños y debemos tratar de adoptar medidas para que ellos, el día de mañana, tenga una sólida preparación personal y profesional.

La familia, los profesores y los bibliotecarios son de suma importancia. Son las personas que les van a dar, guiar y orientar por los libros y la lectura… y las que van a hacer que adquieran ese hábito lector tan necesario y que cuenta con múltiples beneficios. Son de vital importancia tanto los profesores que les enseñan y apoyan en sus distintas etapas lectoras, como la familia que refuerza lo aprendido y crea espacios de lectura en casa, como los bibliotecarios que les sugieren libros y animan a que lean. Todos deben formar una cadena resistente e irrompible por el bien de los jóvenes, por el bien de la sociedad del futuro.

No es de extrañar que leamos noticias como que una niña de cuatro años ya ha leído más de mil libros:
Una niña de cuatro años lee mil libros y se convierte en ‘bibliotecaria por un día’ del Congreso de Estados Unidos
La pequeña de Georgia completó la lectura de mil libros gracias a su lectura diaria de al menos media hora desde que tenía dos años. La madre explica que cuando tenía un año y medio Daliyah Marie Arana ya reconocía muchas palabras porque ella le estuvo leyendo cuentos desde el día en que nació.
O como que una profesora consigue que sus alumnos lean cuarenta libros al año por placer:
La profesora cuyos alumnos leen 40 libros al año (y lo hacen por placer)
Que el hábito de la lectura se genere en la aula y se consolide en casa es una máxima que Nancie Atwell lleva practicando desde hace más de 40 años. Con ella, la profesora y fundadora de Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL), en Maine (EEUU), ha conseguido que sus alumnos de 7º y 8º grado (el equivalente a 1º y 2º de la ESO) lean una media de unos 40 libros al año (cuando la del país ronda los 10). Y que lo hagan por gusto.
Sin duda que dos noticias excelentes, y de actualidad, que hacen pensar en el magnífico trabajo que debe de haber tras ellas. También es cierto que puede que sean las excepciones de la regla (o de la media), pero a quién no le gustaría que nuestro jóvenes tuviesen tanto apego y entusiasmo por la lectura.

Recursos de ayuda y orientación para incitar a la lectura en casa, en la escuela y en la biblioteca

Hace ya un tiempo que compartimos una muy buena ilustración de Lara Romero sobre los momentos en los cuales aprovechar para leer. Hoy queremos aprovechar otra ilustración suya sobre cómo incitar a que los alumnos lean más libros en las aulas.

En ella se mencionan 10 buenas prácticas para crear un aula de devoradores de libros:
  1. Crea tertulias, reflexiones y debates.
  2. Respeta los diferentes ritmos de lectura.
  3. Ilumina bien la clase.
  4. Siembra libros en cada rincón de tu clase.
  5. Permite diferentes géneros literarios.
  6. Comparte tus lecturas.
  7. Busca nuevas lecturas.
  8. Lee en voz alta.
  9. Cuida, ordena y dedica tiempo a los libros.
  10. Renueva los libros.
También es muy interesante el libro “Estrategias de animación a la lectura” de Diego Gutiérrez del Valle, Paciano Merino Merino y José Luis Polanco Alonso. Libro publicado en Grupo Anaya y que está disponible su descarga gratuita en PDF.
Propuestas y reflexiones para trabajar todo tipo de libros en el aula, y conseguir una animación lectora efectiva.
“Debemos definir y delimitar el modelo de lector que pretendemos formar en nuestros alumnos. Y dicho modelo tiene que ser el de un amante de la lectura que entiende esta como el arte de interpretar lo que dice el texto, creando sus propias formas mentales y extrayendo de ellas el fruto del goce intelectual.
Y por último, y no por ello menos importante, a tener en cuenta la excelente infografía elaborada por Elisa Yuste: Ideas fáciles para conseguir que niños y jóvenes lean más este año.
Comienza el año y muchos nos planteamos retos pendientes en relación con aspectos diversos; también con la lectura. Por ello, compartimos algunas ideas fáciles para contribuir a que los niños y jóvenes lean más este año.
Nuestra recomendación es plantearse objetivos factibles, e ir ampliándolos según se vayan alcanzando metas. Por ello, os ofrecemos una serie de ideas fáciles que pueden ayudar a conseguir que los niños y niñas lean más este año.
Sin duda que tenemos que poner todos nuestros medios para hacer crecer a los jóvenes rodeados de libros y de lecturas. Y, lo más importante, hacer que lean por verdadero placer y no por ser una obligación.

Imagen superior cortesía de Shutterstock

Autor: Comunidad Baratz
Twitter: <@grupobaratz>
Fuente: <http://www.comunidadbaratz.com/>