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Archive for December, 2013

Research data lost to the sands of time

Friday, December 20th, 2013

A study published online yesterday in Current Biology found that the availability of research study data diminishes with each passing year following study publication.  The authors, from the University of British Columbia, looked at 516 articles published between 1991 and 2011 and first attempted to locate the e-mail addresses of study authors and contact them.  For the e-mail addresses that led to successful contact with an author, they then asked for the study data.  When making their requests, they said that the data was needed for a reproducibility study.  In the discussion section, the authors noted that they may have had a higher success rate in receiving data if they had instead indicated the purpose was for an important medical or conservation project and offered co-auothorship in the resultant paper.

The researchers found that for every year that had passed since the paper’s publication date, the odds of finding an email address that led to contact with a study author decreased by 7% and that the odds of turning up the data reduced by 17% per year.  The authors report that while some of the data sets were truly lost others fell more into the category of “unavailable,” since they existed, but solely on inaccessible media (think Jaz disk).  These findings will not come as a shock to those who have worked in a research lab.  This publication does put some tangible numbers behind the underlying message of NYU Health Sciences Library’s excellent dramatic portrayal of an instance of inaccessible data.  The authors conclude by suggesting that a solution to this problem moving forward can be found in more journals requiring the deposit of data into a public archive upon publication.  I would also suggest that academic institutions can take a role by establishing policies supporting research data preservation alongside providing a data repository.

It is worth noting that the authors of this paper published their study data on Dryad.

PubMed Commons Project

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

PubMed Commons, a new feature of PubMed which allows commenting on articles, is now live. All authors of publications cited in PubMed are eligible to participate. They can comment on any article in PubMed, rate the helpfulness of comments, and invite other authors cited in PubMed to join. Links to other articles can be embedded in the comments, using a PubMed ID number. You can also set up alerts for articles with comments using your MyNCBI account. Those who are not authors can still view the comments on articles, and there is a new filter available called Reader Comments, which can be applied to search results. It’s also possible to view all the comments in PubMed (433 at this writing): Find all PubMed Citations with comments. We hope that PubMed Commons will lead to open communication and enhance the scholarly record. To participate, see How to Join PubMed Commons. Follow PubMed Commons on Twitter here, and read the PubMed Commons blog for additional information.

 

Funding Opportunity: ALA Online Workshop – Getting Started with Open Access

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

The American Library Association presents a 90-minute online workshop,Getting Started with Open Access: http://www.alastore.ala.org/detail.aspx?ID=10848. Workshop instructors will provide you with tools, techniques, and advice on how to successfully engage with emerging open publishing practices in your own library.

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Pacific Northwest Region (NN/LM PNR) will offer funding for group or individual viewings for PNR Network members. This event will be hosted through Webex. Further technical information is available at the ALA TechSource FAQ page.

Please contact  Patricia Devine at devine@uw.edu by Thursday, December 30 if you are an NN/LM Pacific Northwest Region Network Member (or would like to become a member) interested in hosting the webcast for your institution and your local colleagues (or yourself). Please include:

  1. A brief description of how you will promote the event in your area.
  2. Estimated attendance.
  3. A room to host the webcast.

Site participants will be selected based on geographic location, accessibility, and the potential number of attendees.

PNR will also be hosting the webcast at the University of Washington Health Sciences Library. Free registration details will be announced in an upcoming Dragonfly article in addition to the other funded webcast locations.

RML Rendezvous webcast: Public Health Information Access Project

Friday, December 13th, 2013

Public Health Information Access Project - December 18, 2013 at 1 PM Pacific (noon Alaska 2 PM Mountain)

On-site libraries rarely exist in state Public Health Departments (PHDs) or Local PHD units hindering work performance and evidence-based practice.  An innovative business model supports public health initiatives, improved competencies, sustainable partnerships, and optimizes access to the scientific literature in 15 PHDs.  The PHIA (Digital Library) model represents a fundamental change in the way library resources are licensed, distributed and utilized.  Please join us next Wednesday for Karen Dahlen’s presentation on the Public Health Information Access Project.  If you are unable to tune in live, we invite you to view a recording of the webcast, posted to the Rendezvous website later. 

Due to a recent Adobe Connect system update, please test your computer ahead of time to help avoid technical difficulties as a plugin may be needed.

New for 2013: This webcast is eligible for 1 hour of Medical Library Association continuing education (MLA CE) for attending the webcast and completing a brief evaluation form (provided during the webcast). If you are unable to join us then, we invite you to view a recording of the webcast at the Rendezvous website later – the evaluation form will still be accessible and you can obtain the CE for watching the recording.

As part of our Federal agency services regarding electronic and information technology resources being accessible to people with disabilities, closed captioning is available on this and future RML Rendezvous webcasts.

Funding Opportunity: Research 101: Formulating a Research Plan Through Collaboration

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Pacific Northwest Region (NN/LM PNR) is pleased to announce a funding opportunity for sites around the region to host the upcoming Medical Library Association (MLA) continuing education webcast on Wednesday, December 11, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM Pacific Time: Research versus research: Sometimes the Little r Is All You Need, presented by Heather Holmes, AHIP, Information Services Librarian, Medical Library, Summa Health System, Akron, Ohio.

We have a short turnaround this time, so please let me know if you are interested in hosting a site by Thursday, December 5. Some funding is also available for individual viewing. 

NN/LM PNR will pay MLA webcast registration fees for selected sites that agree to promote and host the webcast for colleagues in their area. Please contact Patricia Devine at devine@uw.edu by Thursday, December 5 if you are an NN/LM Pacific Northwest Region Network Member (or would like to become a member) interested in hosting the webcast for your institution and your local colleagues (or yourself). Please include:

  1. A brief description of how you will promote the event in your area.
  2. Estimated attendance.
  3. A room to host the webcast.
  4. Confirmation that your location can meet the technical requirements of Internet access for an Adobe Connect webcast.

Site participants will be selected based on geographic location, accessibility, and the potential number of attendees.

PNR will also be hosting the webcast at the University of Washington Health Sciences Library. Free registration details will be announced in an upcoming Dragonfly article in addition to the other funded webcast locations.