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Books with all white spines or only first editions? Meet the professionals who curate the libraries of the super-rich

(17 October 2018) What makes a private library? For some it is a collection of well-thumbed books, while for Jay Gatsby it was all about the look. At Maison Assouline, a luxury publishing company, it is a 360-degree experience that starts with a beautiful book and grows to encompass the fabric of the sofa you’re reading it on, the colour of the walls, and the art hanging from them.

Step into its Piccadilly store, a Lutyens-designed former bank, and you enter the world of founders Prosper and Martine Assouline. It features a careful curation of tomes and perfect objets d’art; there’s even a bar in the corner serving cocktails inspired by their catalogue.

The Telegraph has the full story by Boudicca Fox-Leonard with photographs.

Christchurch central library opens

(15 October 2018) Mayor Lianne Dalziel, opening the new library, said that the $92 million five-level centre on the edge of Cathedral Square marks the return of Christchurch’s cultural and community heart following the 2011 earthquake.

“Tūranga will create a new set of memories for a new generation in a way I would never have dreamed as a child. It is much more than a library and I think it’s going to transform the central city. It’s a massive game changer in terms of giving people of all ages an inspirational place to meet, learn, create and discover. It is jam packed with new experiences, technology and knowledge and I hope it will excite children into dreaming about their future and the part they can play in shaping our city and our world.”

Christchurch’s former central library was demolished after being damaged in the February 2011 earthquake. It was the largest and busiest library in the South Island with nearly one million visitors each year. Its replacement was designed by New Zealand company Architectus in association with Danish library design experts schmidt hammer lassen.

Designing Libraries has the news in full.

MIT Press Partners with Silverchair to launch MIT Press Direct eBook platform

(15 October 2018) MIT Press Direct will launch with more than 2,500 titles in 2018, offering a broad range of books from its distinguished front- and backlist, including significant works in economics, business innovation, machine learning and AI, environment, evolution, and energy. Using Silverchair’s suite of self-serve publishing tools, the MIT Press plans to introduce new subject collections, including science/technology/society, information sciences, digital humanities, and education in 2019.

“We are delighted to work with the MIT Press and host their renowned ebook collection,” said Thane Kerner, Silverchair CEO. “The MIT Press joins a cohort of other distinguished university presses on a platform that is designed to support the changing and expanding needs of their users.”

“The MIT Press is committed to innovation, both in terms of what we publish and how we publish,” said Amy Brand, director of the MIT Press. “With the launch of MIT Press Direct, we will meet our users’ needs by providing access to thousands of new and classic MIT Press titles through a platform that is accessible, sustainable, and independent, under terms that are consistent with our values as a university-based publisher.”

Once launched, MIT Press Direct will offer institutional subscribers DRM-free books with chapter-level access for unlimited simultaneous users, MARC and KBART records for easy data ingestion, and standardized usage reports. A key factor in the Press’s selection of Silverchair as a partner was the need for a flexible platform that can accommodate the diverse list that the MIT Press publishes, ranging from highly technical titles with LaTeX mathematical computations to heavily illustrated art and architecture volumes.

“Partnering with Silverchair will make it possible for the MIT Press to launch an elegant, responsive, full-feature ebook site that advances the fields to which the Press has contributed over the last 50 years,” said Terry Ehling, director of strategic initiatives at the MIT Press. “Delivering our high-value scholarly ebook content to a global community of scholars is a priority for us, and we look forward to utilizing Silverchair’s technology to help us advance research and education worldwide.”

MIT Press Direct will be available to institutional subscribers in 2019.

About Silverchair

Silverchair integrates and delivers scholarly and professional content from a single omni-format hosting platform – journals, books, video, custom formats, and more. The Silverchair Platform provides distinctive online sites, unique products, and advanced technologies to STM and humanities publishers, professional societies, and the federal government, propelling their content to greater reach and impact.

The announcement is here.

At Frankfurt: What is ‘Plan S’ and why are many publishers worried?

(12 October 2018) At a Frankfurter Buchmesse (Book Fair) event on Thursday called “Get Smart About Plan S,” Malavika Legge, acting director of publishing for Portland Press and the Biochemical Society, said, “With Plan S, there has been a lack of consultation, a lack of consideration, a lack of detail, and a lack of time.”

Plan S is said to stand for science, speed, solution, and shock. Moreover, it is clear from the reactions on the stage that “shock” sums up what the publishers on stage feel about the radical open access plan announced only on September 4 by the European Research Council. The plan is supposed to be implemented by 2020, which in the timescale of publishing is—as Legge says—“already here.”

Copyright Clearance Center has the story by Mark Piesing.



Libraries are about democracy, not just books

(9 October 2018) Libraries Work! a research report released last month in Australia, demonstrates that every dollar invested in Victorian public libraries generates more than four times that value in benefits to the local community.

Yet some writers and politicians have failed to recognise this and, further, have failed to understand what public libraries do. If we allow ourselves to indulge in nostalgic middle-class ideas of quiet places and well-stuffed bookshelves, then we have failed to understand them too. In fact, we have endangered them.

The Age has the full story by Christie Nieman.

CORE partners with Naver, South Korea’s largest search engine

(8 October 2018) CORE, the world’s largest aggregator of open access scientific content, and Naver, South Korea’s number one search solution, have entered into a collaboration that will see CORE’s content being made available to 42 million Naver users.  As part of the collaboration, Naver ingests data collected by CORE to enrich its Naver Academic search system with millions of open access papers. The aim of both services is to provide free access to scientific publications and make the experience seamless.

Naver’s main search engine and its research search site hold the largest market share (75%) in South Korea and their traffic is even higher than Google and Google Scholar in the country. In this collaboration, CORE will serve as Naver’s main provider of open access scientific outputs; as of May 2018, CORE has aggregated, processed, enriched and currently hosts millions of metadata records and full texts from a global network of thousands of data providers, making it easier for Naver to source this content. As a result, Naver is now able to extend its collection and offer access to not only scientific outputs from commercial publishers that require a payment, but also to diverse free of cost open access content that covers a variety of scientific disciplines.

Naver has already integrated the CORE records into their search engine. This was made possible via the CORE FastSync, a recently created a CORE product, which uses the ResourceSync protocol enabling customers to receive new content aggregated by CORE quickly and easily.

With CORE’s ability to support existing search engines for academic literature via CORE FastSync, Naver is able to index large data from CORE, expand its retrievable resources and offer its customers a wider variety of content. In addition, this collaboration will also benefit CORE’s data providers as it will expand and increase the visibility of their content.

The news in full is here.

OpenAIRE and DuraSpace partner to support greater functionality in the global repository network

(5 October 2018) On September 25, 2018, OpenAIRE and DuraSpace signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). Both OpenAIRE and DuraSpace have a shared interest in a robust, interoperable, and functional network of repositories that provide value to the research community and contribute to Open Science and Open Access in Europe and the world.

Repositories collectively act as the foundation for Open Science by collecting and providing access to research outputs, and play a key role in the emerging scholarly commons. To that end, OpenAIRE and DuraSpace aim to ensure that repositories are using up-to-date technologies and adopting international standards and protocols. Through this MOU, OpenAIRE and DuraSpace have agreed to work together on a number of aspects to support their common goals. These activities include enabling DSpace systems to comply with OpenAIRE metadata guidelines, gradual adoption of next generation repository functionalities, and working together on standardized methods for measuring and aggregating usage statistics.

This partnership will support the global community of repository users by improving repository functionality and enabling the adoption of other value added services by repository platforms and aggregators.

The announcement is here.

Kudos reaches milestone of a quarter of a million users

(5 October 2018)  Kudos (, the award-winning research dissemination and impact acceleration service, has announced they’ve reached the milestone of over a quarter of a million researcher-users, linked to over 6 million publications.

This is a significant landmark for the service, which was launched in 2014, to help researchers take more direct control over the visibility and performance of their work. The profile of Kudos users is at the very top end of academia, representing senior faculty whose funding success and career progression are increasingly linked to their ability to demonstrate and drive impact for their work – outside of the research community as well as within it.

“Reaching a quarter of a million researcher-users is a significant moment for Kudos,” said Melinda Kenneway, cofounder and CEO of Kudos. “Kudos users are primarily those researchers who are actively and currently publishing. This is a much smaller group than the tens of millions of users cited by the large scholarly networks and profile sites, but it’s this group that is under most pressure to communicate their work effectively and demonstrate impact. It’s also the group with greatest responsibility for winning competitive grants and helping their institutions secure government R&D funding.”

“From the earliest days of Kudos, we wanted to help the broader research community communicate more effectively about their work – whatever their career stage, and whether they had formal publications or not”, said David Sommer, cofounder and Product Director. “To that end, we’re delighted to be shortly introducing some major advances to our service that will help researchers collaborate for impact and manage and improve the performance of not only their publications, but also their projects and other outputs – with emphasis on improving and evidencing engagement with diverse audiences such as policy makers, educators, industry and the public, as well as other academics.”

“We’re launching these new services iteratively,” said Charlie Rapple, cofounder and Sales & Marketing Director “and look forward to reaching our next milestone in users as we’re able to demonstrate how Kudos helps the research community collaborate and communicate effectively for impact.”

The announcement is here.

NTU hiring Assistant Professor in Information Studies

(4 October 2018) The Wee Kim Wee School of Communication & Information, NTU, Singapore is hiring a scholar-teacher working in the area of information and knowledge management. Ideally, the candidate would have experience in utilizing big data analytics in information and knowledge management contexts. The candidate is expected to possess a doctorate in an appropriate field from a reputable university.

Closing date is 25 November 2018.

Application procedure is here.

Rethink role of HE beyond rankings, says minister

(3 October 2018) The role of higher education is changing, and the existing research-led university model and the system of university ranking and evaluation need to evolve with the times, Singapore’s Education Minister Ong Ye Kung told an international higher education conference recently.

“After all, every industry we know of is subject to disruption,” he said.

In his 26 September speech at the Times Higher Education World Academic Summit, held at the National University of Singapore, Ong questioned international university ranking systems’ ability to take into account the “varied and profound roles of universities today”.

University World News 3 October 2018 Issue No. 523 has the full story by Kalinga Seneviratne.

World’s largest collection of Tibetan Buddhist literature now available on the Internet Archive

(4 October 2018) The Buddhist Digital Resource Center (BDRC) and Internet Archive (IA) announced today that they are making a large corpus of Buddhist literature available via the Internet Archive. This collection represents the most complete record of the words of the Buddha available in any language, plus many millions of pages of related commentaries, teachings and works such as medicine, history, and philosophy.

The complete illustrated story is here.

Singapore Institute of Technology hiring Librarian

(21 September 2018) Reporting to the University Librarian, this position is responsible for providing services related to User Education, Reference and Circulation Services. The successful candidate will also be involved in the marketing and promotion of library services.

LAS has the job description.

Publishers taking legal action against ResearchGate to limit unlicensed paper sharing on networking site

Separate suit against pirate site Sci-Hub by the American Chemical Society appears likely to succeed

(5 October 2018)  Several scientific publishers, including the American Chemical Society, are expanding their legal actions against sites that facilitate sharing of scientific articles in violation of copyright law.

The publishers are preparing to issue what could be millions of notices to the scientific networking site ResearchGate asking it to remove copyrighted material. ACS and Elsevier have also sued ResearchGate for copyright infringement.

Founded in 2008, ResearchGate is a for-profit company and now has more than 13 million members and 100 million publications, according to its website. Its funding comes from venture capital investment; investors include Bill Gates, Goldman Sachs Investment Partners, and Wellcome Trust. ResearchGate also sells advertisements that appear alongside its content.

But as many as 7 million articles that appear on ResearchGate do so in violation of copyright law, publishers allege.

c&en has the full story by By Jyllian Kemsley & Andrea Widener.

Launch your career in cloud networking

(2 October 2018) The Networking in Google Cloud Platform Specialization created by the Google Cloud Training Team will teach you everything you need to know about cloud networking. By the end of the Specialization you’ll be able to design, develop, and manage networking solutions to drive business objectives.

The Coursera blog has the questions and answers here.