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Dean's Update: Continuing to Explore Innovations in the New Year

January 10, 2020

2020 starts a new cycle of aspirations, challenges and creative alignments to assert the Libraries as a valuable partner to achieve the University’s success. It is a point in time that invites us to take different long views—a year, a decade, the first quarter century. In this issue of In Circulation, we take a look back to the last few months of 2019, as well as to the new year ahead and share explorations and innovations for ways a library supports its university.

The fall quarter ScholarSip event, held in December, launched this academic year’s look at challenges our faculty face when undertaking research with commercial partners. The fall 2019 event highlighted experiences one Drexel researcher from the LeBow College of Business faces when she navigates common interests and different skills when trying to analyze and understand evidence shared between industry and academics. The event series continues the Libraries’ innovative way of fostering a culture of inquiry and shared curiosity among the University’s diverse faculty and professional staff.

Another venue for building cross-disciplinary community involves initial planning to share historic videos from the University Archives through informal film screenings. Students, staff and faculty are invited to discover and share in their common identity as Drexel dragons while enjoying each other’s company with a little popcorn for added flavor. Read about the start of an innovative idea.

Also in this issue, learn about new tools the Libraries is exploring to analyze data for use in service quality improvement. Two articles describe these tools—one is the adoption of an Interlibrary Loan Cost Calculator and the other is an innovative data dashboard we plan to use to help us promote our strategic work to advance Drexel’s mission and ambitions.

Another article references the result of an invitation from the Society of College and University Planners (SCUP) to describe for academic planners how a library promotes adoption of Open Educational Resources (OERs) and licensed access to information resources for course assignments. Even though we are not in the forefront to encourage adoption of these cost-saving strategies to lower student educational expenditures, we are delighted to be a case study for colleagues beyond librarianship to learn more about this movement.

We are pleased to share these highlights of some of the new ways Drexel Libraries is supporting the University, from building community to creating an environment of exceptional service support by improving convenient access to authoritative information. 

We welcome feedback to learn about other creative approaches or interest from others to explore some of our innovations further.

Happy New Year!

Danuta A. Nitecki, PhD
Dean of Libraries