Research Strategies

Today I worked on the new research strategy for our research field digital libraries at HTW Chur. This will be the future main focus of our activities in research in library science and also in HTW’s services for libraries. We are still discussing the details, but I am convinced that it will be a great step forward. Some of our topics are innovation in libraries, new ways of production and distribution of eBooks and their impact on libraries, semantic Web and linked open data, mobile usage of library services and much more. I’ve got the idea to develop an innovation check – a kind of maturity check for the degree of  adapting innovative tools, methods and technologies in libraries. And I didn’t forget our project technology radar…

I am also looking forward to cooperate with colleagues with different background and special know-how. And I hope that we will soon be able to publish some results.

Twitter as blog reader

Yesterday my opinion that one of Twitter’s most important functions is that of a blog reader was confirmed. My daughter mentioned that a friend of her said he would read my blog. First I thought he meant my official Blog Innovation@ETH-Bibliothek, but it was my new personal blog he was talking about. I wondered how he knew about this new blog with only two posts being published yet. And in my blog he read about my daughter’s blog as Mrs. Garlic Head (www.mrsgarlichead.com).

And how did he know about these blogs? He is a follower of my Twitter account. And of course all our blogs are connected to Twitter. So he knew about my new blog instantly and there he read about my daughter’s blog. I guess now he knows her Twitter name and follows her on Twitter, too…

Even if I know that there are quite a lot of followers on Twitter, I am always surprised when somebody says he reads my blog. So I think that Twitter is really the most efficient blog reader. And as author of blogs you are able connect several RSS-feeds (from different blogs) to your Twitter account with Twitterfeed (www.twitterfeed.com). The only problem is if you follow too many Twitterfeeds and you don’t manage to read the new posts instantly. Then they get lost in the flood of news… So, it is important to clean from time to time your Twitter account from feeds you don’t need anymore.

And, by the way, the most beautiful way to read blogs and/or Twitterfeeds is reading them on Flipboard, one of my favorite apps for the iPad.

Mrs Garlic Head's blog on Flipboard

Shift from practice to theory

Today it’s my last day working in a library. Tomorrow will begin a new era for me, when I start working as a researcher and teacher in a university of applied sciences. Considering this shift from practical to more theoretical work I wonder what will be the difference and which elements will connect the two worlds. I think it is very important that these two worlds aren’t really separated: Libraries should be in close contact to the results of academic research. And research should also deal with issues that are relevant for the practical work in libraries. Therefore I’m looking forward to work in a university of applied sciences – it means that the content and the results of research should be applicable by libraries, archives and other institutions.

When I visited the conference informare! last year in Berlin, I noticed that our library is sometimes far away from the subjects that were presented by scientists. When I came back to ETH library, I wrote a report and suggested that our library should involve more into scientific research. A leading academic library should be part of applied research in its field. An academic library should support research about subjects that deal with providing academic information. There could and should be a fruitful cooperation between library science and libraries.

I promise here and now, that I will try to combine the two worlds in my future work. I’m looking forward to going deeper in my analysis of current phenomenons and trends than I could do that before, when the interests of our library had to be the focus of my work. And on the other hand I intend to prepare the findings in a way that they can be adopted by libraries. This will be a great challenge!

Written on my way from Chur (university of applied sciences) to ETH library, on my last „hybrid“ day between the worlds…

Visit my new homepage and blog

I’ve just published my new personal homepage with my blog. You may wonder why I didn’t do that before. The fact is that I’ll start a new job as professor of library science at HTW Chur next week (on May 1). And until now I had my blog (not a personal one, but run only by me) at ETH-Bibliothek: http://blogs.ethz.ch/innovethbib. As I leave ETH I needed a new platform for my reports and comments.

And I think that it is quite important for a lecturer and scientist to have a homepage with his published works, his presentations, talks and lectures. So I’ve created this homepage on WordPress with some information about me, my publications, my presentations and my lectures. Maybe there will be more items in future.

And I want to make a statement concerning blogs: I think that blogs are (still) an important part of scholarly and popular communication. I’d prefer a personal blog for my thoughts and comments instead of a commercial social media service. Of course my contributions will be linked to many of these platforms, but my blog is my primary place where I want to publish my thoughts, my professional views and even results of my research.

And I decided to write my blog in English. Why? At first because I think that information science should be internationally linked and not limited to a German speaking public. I’m looking forward to exchange my ideas with colleagues all over the world. Second because it’s a good training – even if my English is far from being perfect. And third my daughter Lena encouraged me to try it, too. Because she set up her own blog as www.mrsgarlichead.com in English. It’s a great blog, by the way!

You can subscribe to my blog using the RSS-link and a RSS reader or following me on Twitter. For me, Blogs and Twitter just belong together, with Twitter as a fast and easy way to subscribe to blogs and to read the headlines. But the blog is the primary source, of course! I hope you will enjoy it!