The Evolution of Digital Scholarship

Photo of students in front of the Woodruff Library

Outside the Woodruff Library.

My fellow Deputy CIO, Marc Overcash, joins me in this month’s update to help celebrate the evolution of digital scholarship at Emory.

With the announcement of the merger of OIT and the University Library into a single operating division, we are happy to announce that a terrific group of Library IT staff is joining us as part of the new Library and Information Technology Services (LITS).

These staff members, whose bios you will read in today’s newsletter, offer a variety of IT expertise that complement important areas in our organization and also provide new insight toward strengthening our support for the academic mission of Emory.

Joining our newly-formed IT division are system admins, user-experience experts, a variety of developers, and application configuration specialists who are dedicated to Library applications.

Where we have work that is scalable and repeatable across large sections of Emory – including functions like Class Tech, desktop support, public computing, system administration, and software development – we should be able to support and strengthen our new colleagues in the Library by pairing them with people in OIT who have similar interests and talents.

Photo of two Emory students with laptops in the Woodruff Library

Emory students enjoying digital scholarship.

Similarly, the creation of the Center for Digital Scholarship (CDS) with its focus on creating a more unified digital scholarship experience for Emory’s faculty, staff and students, should be another leg of support for the work to which the Library IT staff has so long been committed.

Among elements being moved to form this new digital hub is the Emory Center for Interactive Teaching (ECIT). As such, some of OIT’s staff is moving into this new section as part of the exchange, including the Director of ECIT, Wayne Morse (formerly of Academic Technology Services). However, we are not saying goodbye. We will still work closely with this new department as part of the unfolding vision of digital scholarship at Emory under Rich Mendola‘s leadership.

I am always excited when we get a chance to build a stronger connection with the academic mission of the University so I am very eager to to see where our combined staff can take us under this new model.

Photo of Woodruff Library study area

One of the many study areas in the Woodruff Library.

Commentary From Marc Overcash (R-WIT)

Like Brett and UTS, all of us here in Research and Woodruff Health Sciences IT (R-WIT) are enthusiastic about the new organizational changes. We have a strong group of developers with a great portfolio of projects that we can’t wait to interweave into the organization. Already they have shared some ideas on how to improve our practice here, and clearly these new individuals are going to be valuable to our overall direction and practice.

There is also excitement in the air about our organizational transformation into a new Library and Information Technology Services (LITS) division. It is a fantastic opportunity to interdigitate the strengths of information science and information technology. From strategies and tactical implementations of data management plans to expanding the scholarly impact for our data analytics activities to guiding faculty and scholars to the academic resources through the Researcher portal, the list continues.

Rich recently said that “this is a great opportunity to benefit from the expertise that has historically existed in both organizations and to better position our new organization for an increasingly digital future.” I couldn’t agree more. We have lots of great work ahead of us, and we are all excited to have such highly skilled and highly respected colleagues to join us and help shape this future.

In closing, welcome to the new folks in R-WIT, and welcome everyone to LITS!

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