IMLS Grant for Library and GSLIS

Green Sandore Downie

The Institute of Museum and Library Services has awarded $398,844 to the University of Illinois Library and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science through its Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program. Harriett Green, English and Digital Humanities Librarian at the University Library, is the principal investigator on the project, “Digging Deeper, Reaching Further: Libraries Empowering Users to Mine the HathiTrust Digital Library Resources.”

J. Stephen Downie, GSLIS professor and associate dean for research and co-director of the HathiTrust Research Center (HTRC), and Beth Sandore Namachchivaya, associate university librarian for research, are co-PIs on the project.

According to the abstract, the project will “develop a shared curriculum for use in academic libraries [as well as] a train-the-trainer series designed to assist librarians in getting started with the tools, services, and related research methodologies of the HathiTrust Research Center (HTRC).”

“We are excited to build an innovative suite of training opportunities to empower librarians to engage in digital scholarship. Our multi-institutional collaboration will enable us to reach academic libraries across the spectrum of higher education institutions, and address the urgent need for expanded library research support in digital humanities,” said Green.

North America’s largest public academic library and the nation’s top library and information science program have enjoyed a long history of close and productive collaborations. This project brings together noted experts in research and practice both at Illinois as well as other institutions to further digital humanities research. Working with the Illinois PIs will be colleagues from Indiana University, Northwestern University, Lafayette College, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and the HTRC.

“This is an exciting next step in opening the powerful resources of the HTRC to academic libraries across the country. Librarians are on the front lines of bringing big data tools and methods to their constituencies, and this grant will make them even more effective in supporting research,” said Downie.

“This grant will enable a team of library and information science professionals to advance the use of data mining tools that have the potential to revolutionize digital scholarship practices using the HathiTrust Digital Library. The resulting network of expertise and support for digital humanities research and teaching has the potential to fundamentally change the nature of libraries’ research services,” said Namachchivaya.

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