LIS Research Linking System prototype

Christine Irving introduces Maja Ilievska to afternoon tea

Maja Ilievska has just completed the second week of her summer placement working with Hazel Hall, Christine Irving and Peter Cruickshank on LIS Research Coalition projects. She says that she is enjoying the work and learning a lot. Maja is particularly looking forward to participating at the DREaM project conference, especially for the opportunity of meeting new people involved in the LIS community and sharing experiences with them. (Maja has also been getting used to our strange UK “summer” weather and taken to drinking tea!)

In the meantime Maja is working on an individual project. She is now in the position to share some information about the work that she hopes to complete. She’s written a proposal, the focus of which is how to address the question:

What would be a good system to serve as a central community-maintained access point to link to useful information about LIS practitioner research work and other “small” projects?

In the next four weeks Maja will create a prototype LIS Research Linking System. She hopes that this might be developed into a working model that will provide LIS practitioners access to the research of others that would be useful in helping them improve their practice.

Maja has identified a couple of stages for her project. The first is to research the “market” through observing activities in the JISC LIS mailing groups. The lists comprise a valuable source of information on how LIS practitioners work together to solve “small” research questions in an informal and practical way. Typically this is done by individuals: (1) posting a question to a mailing list; (2) gathering data from others who offer their opinions, expertise, and stories of their own experience of the matter in question; (3) analysing the data gathered; then (4) (sometimes, but not always) posting a summary of the findings to the list. Maja is also interested in identifying other online resources that outline smaller (and often unfunded) research projects, such as descriptions of workplace research in individuals’ blog postings, or relevant Masters dissertations that have been made available on the Web. The second stage of Maja’s project will be to choose a suitable platform that could link to these primary sources of research output. In this stage of the work special attention will be paid to existing models for the implementation of other collaborations amongst the LIS community such as the semi-annual Library day in a life and the LIS Publications wikis. A blog or other similar tool may also be a possibility.

Having done this work the next stage will be to ask people who have completed – or who are working on – LIS research projects of the nature described above to contribute to the community approach by linking their research to the new system. At the end of her placement Maja hopes that she will be able to say that she has a prototype system functioning as a community-maintained resource that could be developed further to provide a valuable tool to help LIS practitioners access research in the fields of their interest.

Maja is mindful that she only has a few weeks to work on this project (she leaves her placement on 20th July) so she may not be able to meet all her objectives. However she will try her best to contribute an insight into a possible solution to the problem that practitioners face when trying to access information about smaller and more informal LIS research output.

Maja is looking for feedback on these ideas and is open to new ideas and suggestions. If you would like to make a comment on her project please do so here. Alternatively you can contact Maja by e-mail at m.ilievska@napier.ac.uk, on Twitter at @MajaNapier, or meet her in person at the DREaM conference at the British Library in London on Monday 9th July.

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New summer intern joins the team: meet Maja Ilievska

Maja Ilievska has joined Hazel Hall’s team at Edinburgh Napier University to work on LIS Research Coalition projects DREaM and RiLIES. In particular she will be helping on final preparations for the DREaM conference. She will also work with the team to identify possible ways for the LIS research community to continue to support research in the domain beyond the formal end of the LIS Research Coalition projects. You will be hearing more from her soon. Meanwhile, we hand over to Maja to introduce herself:

“Hello. I am starting my internship in the Centre for Social Informatics at Edinburgh Napier University, so this seems a good time to introduce myself. I applied for the position of an intern through the IAESTE internship programme and I am now working with Professor Hazel Hall on her LIS research projects.

Maja Ilievska

“I am a student at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technologies at Ss. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje, Macedonia. Currently I am in the last year of my undergraduate studies and recently I have been working on a project about social network analysis, online communities and spreading the information within them as part of a course in Intelligent Information Systems. I hope that I will be able to use this to help LIS practitioners reach the information they require.

“I am looking forward to my involvement in the DREaM and RiLIES, projects and meeting all the people working on these projects.

“I am also looking forward to amazing weekends organized by IAESTE Scotland along with the rest of the interns because it is great opportunity to meet new people from different parts of the world and learn about Scotland’s history and culture. As I will be in the UK this summer I really hope to catch a glimpse of the Olympics or Wimbledon.”

Maja has set up a new Twitter account @MajaNapier, which she will use while she is on placement over the summer.