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Weekly News Digest

April 10, 2018 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

Celebrating National Library Week

April 8–14 is the 60th National Library Week, which “celebrates the impact that [all types of] libraries and library employees have in their communities,” according to Jill Grunenwald, OverDrive’s marketing and communications specialist. OverDrive shares some of the week’s events: ALA’s release of its “State of America’s Libraries” report, National Bookmobile Day (check out OverDrive’s Digital Bookmobile), and Take Action for Libraries Day of donating time, money, or resources to local libraries.

Misty Copeland, the first African-American woman to be named principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre, is honorary chairperson of this year’s celebration.

For more information, read the blog post and visit

NEH and Mellon Foundation Provide Grants for Digitizing Humanities Books

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation are providing seven grants (totaling more than $1 million) to digitize out-of-print humanities texts and make them freely available as ebooks. These grants, part of the Humanities Open Book Program, will be given to “publishers that have identified significant scholarly books that enhance public knowledge of topics such as American and European history, philosophy, classics, Asian and Latin American studies, architectural history, and literary criticism,” according to the press release. The grants will cover the digitization of nearly 1,000 scholarly works.

For more information, read the press release.

NISO Publishes New Strategic Directions Document

The Architecture Committee of the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) released the 2018 update for the NISO Strategic Directions document, which NISO’s Topic Committees will use “to direct the future development portfolios of standards and recommended practices” and to “prioritize potential future activities where NISO should be engaged in developing new standards and recommended practices,” according to the press release. The document describes interrelations among community stakeholders (libraries, publishers, system vendors, etc.) and potential overlaps in committee workloads. It also features a public stakeholder survey.

For more information, read the press release.

Canadian and American Shows Pick the 'Best' Novels

Porter Anderson, editor-in-chief of Publishing Perspectives, shares news and commentary about national book competitions: the four-part Canada Reads show concluded by choosing its winning novel, and PBS is going to host a similar show starting May 22 called The Great American Read.

Canada Reads, with its theme ‘A Book To Open Your Eyes,’ is the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s national-debate program … which eliminates four of five carefully chosen socially relevant books in a four-day sequence of debate,” Anderson writes. A panel of celebrities debated each book in front of a live audience. “A lot of the discussion is unabashedly geared toward issues with which the Canadian populations, plural, are grappling, clearly mining the country’s new literature for its context on this diverse society and what so many distinct peoples can become as one nation.” Forgiveness, by Mark Sakamoto, eventually won the competition.

The Great American Read, an eight-part series hosted by Meredith Vieira, will start with a list of 100 books, which celebrities and other personalities will debate, and the audience will vote for the eventual winner, to be crowned America’s Best-Loved Novel.

Anderson writes, “Armchair critics will note that this sounds like a one-off venture. Once the ‘best-loved novel’ is ordained, does another season look for the country’s ‘second-best-loved novel’? What’s more, the American love of superlatives may make ‘the best!’ attractive, but one of the Canadian show’s strengths is that it holds up all five books for their quality and doesn’t place as much emphasis on a winner and, perforce, losers. Nevertheless, the new outing is to be welcomed, it’s unfair to critique it in advance, and its mission and format need not match the Canadian show.”

For more information, read the article.

Nature Research Co-Sponsors Awards for Women in Science

Nature Research joined forces with The Estée Lauder Companies to create two global awards honoring women in science. According to the press release, “women [make] up less than a third of the world's researchers and [face] barriers to pursuing long-term careers that lead to senior positions in science,” so this partnership aims to “put a spotlight on both exceptional achievements of female scientists and those working to promote greater inclusiveness.”

The Nature Research Award for Inspiring Science “honors female scientists who have excelled in scientific discovery and have completed their PhD within the last ten years.”

The Nature Research Award for Innovating Science “recognizes an individual or an organization that has led a grassroots initiative to support increased access to, or interest in, STEM subjects for girls and women around the globe.”

Nominations for the awards will close on June 11, 2018. The winners, announced in October, “will receive up to $10,000 to spend on initiatives linked to the award and free training from Nature Masterclasses” plus additional grant funds.

For more information, read the press release.

Springer Plans Journal on Research in STEM Education

Springer announced the forthcoming release of the Journal for STEM Education Research, a new interdisciplinary publication focused on research in STEM education that is part of Springer’s Education & Language portfolio. This subscription-based journal (with OA options) complements Springer’s OA publication International Journal of STEM Education. It will be published twice each year and focus on “the investigation of students’ cognitive and non-cognitive development in STEM education at PreK-12 and college levels,” according to the press release. “Articles explore how specific learning environments can be constructed and provided to facilitate students’ learning and development in STEM, and what possible advantages and disadvantages STEM education might have for students’ learning experience.”

For more information, read the press release.

Library of Congress Makes Parts of Leonard Bernstein Collection Available Online

The Library of Congress is celebrating the 100th anniversary of composer Leonard Bernstein’s birth by making musical manuscripts and scrapbooks from his personal and professional archives available for free online. The Leonard Bernstein Collection contains more than 3,700 digitized items such as photos, writings, correspondence, and audio recordings.

“Bernstein arguably was the most prominent musical figure in America in the second half of the 20th century,” says Mark Horowitz, the collection’s curator. “A polymath—a Renaissance man—he was a composer, conductor, pianist, educator and social activist. He composed musicals, ballets, operas, film scores, a mass, chamber music and symphonies.” 

For more information, read the press release.

EBSCO Open Dissertations Platform Launches

EBSCO Information Services announced that its project with BiblioLabs, EBSCO Open Dissertations, is now live with more than 800,000 electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) aggregated for free discovery and access by libraries around the world. The ETDs’ metadata will also be available via EBSCO Discovery Service. More than 30 institutions from four continents are contributing to EBSCO Open Dissertations, and the plan is to have 1 million ETDs available by June 2018.

For more information, read the press release.

CCC Rolls Out Content Kanban Management Tool

Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) released Content Kanban, a workflow tool that helps organizations manage content development. It can be used with the Ixxus Publishing Platform (IPP) or on its own to “streamline development, foster collaboration, and keep projects on schedule,” according to the press release. “Using the flexible methodology of Kanban, CCC applies the time-tested task-management framework to the lifecycle of content, from the simplest project to the most complex. As a result, teams are more organized and engaged, projects are completed on time and on budget and project updates are communicated faster and more accurately to stakeholders.”

For more information and a list of Content Kanban’s features, read the press release.

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli
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