[1. Provide services, acquire materials]
[2. Manage Overseas Acquisitions plans]
[3. Middle East and Tibetan staff]
[4. Electronic iniatives]
[5. Professional and new skills]
Report of the Librarian for Anthropology and
June 2001 - May 31, 2002
Philip McEldowney [ Resume || Email]
Highlights of the year
- Chaired the search committee for the Tibetan Studies Coordinator
position as part of the Information Community program, developing and
announcing the position description and starting to evaluate applications
(until the position was suspended because of budget reductions)
- Helped arrange for the necessary move of one staff member to the Cataloging
department, which freed up office space of researchers working on digital
projects, through working with other departments and staff
- Added new role: Worked at the public reference desk, part-time, after
a training period.
- Completed the charge of the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation policy
committee, as chair of that committee, and made our recommendations to
publicize the Library's ETD program and improve the processing of
Continue to develop, strengthen and evaluate service (collections,
bibliographic instruction, reference and information) to University
customers, as the Librarian to the Anthropology Department and Co-Librarian
to the Religious Studies Department and as Selector for the South Asian
history program, and the Arabic, Persian, Hindi, Urdu, and Sanskrit
language programs, in order to meet their teaching and research needs.
1.1) ensure that materials needed for teaching and research are
acquired in a timely fashion;
**Reviewed titles regularly throughout the year and made
selections from online sources, publishers print offerings, vendor
slips, and publisher catalogs for firm purchase of materials; processed
special 'purchase requests' in a timely fashion (usually within 2 hours of
receipt) and other requests as they were given to me. Examples include
Anthropology requests for Taiwan monographs and early 20th century Taiwan
statistical and census microfilm, for videos, for detailed India maps for
an article on present-day evidence of reincarnation, for a bibliographic
listing of articles for a book on Louis Dumont's theory of Homo
Hierarchicus, Asian and Middle East Languages and Cultures requests for
music CDs and videos and India language maps and census statistics for a
talk at Woodbury Forest, Religious Studies requests for Tibetan
multi-volume texts from Lhasa and for sets of full-text CD-ROMs, and
Government and Foreign Affairs requests for special monographs.
**Worked with acquisitions and circulation on a special
request and special order for another copy of the multi-volume
Linguistic Survey of India from August through November 2001, since
the title could not be located within the library holdings.
**As liaison to University departments and Centers, I
organized and conducted 9 library tours during the summer of 2001
and winter of 2002 for prospective candidates for the position of AMELC's
Hindi language and literature instructor (2 candidates), for the position
of modern South Asian history (2 candidates), for the position of
Anthropology Tibetan professsor (3 candidates), for the visiting Page
Barbour lecturer, and for the evaluator of the Center for South Asian
Studies; also attended their presentations.
**Worked with acquisitions to manage the outsourcing of the
cataloging of the Persian Chubak collection, by setting up a
schedule to xerox the title and other pages of each title to send off to
cataloging, and then to match cataloged records as they were made and add
them to the library. Several titles needed extra efforts and I arranged for
Persian language faculty to assist in that additional identification and
cataloging process. All titles of the Chubak collection have now been
added to the library, completing this 3-year special project to acquire,
transport, catalog, and add the gift of the Sadeq Chubak collection of
about 1,000 Persian monographic and journal titles.
**Worked with periodicals and microfiche staff member, Anne
Benham, as she works to revise web information, tips, and guides
about the Human Resources Area Files.
**Met with 2 other librarians to request an improved and enhanced
cataloging of the 19th and 20th century set of microfiche of the
"Indian District Gazetteers," so that these important and rich
documents may be available to researchers.
1.2) faculty and students are kept informed of new Library
initiatives via individual contact, email announcements, and updated Web
pages of selective scholarly resources,
**At the beginning of each semester and a couple of other times
made email announcements of changes in the library; updated Web
pages of the Anthropology and Religious Studies library resources;
developed web pages for instructional sessions and each semester for the
Center for South Asian Studies newsletter.
1.3) bibliographic instruction is offered and provided when
**Provided group bibliographic instruction for Religious Studies
faculty in May and August 2001; for Anthropology undergraduates in two
sessions in September and October 2001; and for a modern South Asia history
class in September 2001; provided separate individual bibliographic
instruction in my office with various faculty and with 3 Anthropology
graduate students, 2 South Asia history students, and 1 Religious Studies
graduate student; as well as answered bibliographic email queries,
such as about the online "Book of the Dead" exhibit and the "Indian Videos"
and Indian "Newstrack" databases.
1.4) my two coordinators (changed now to just one coordinator) are
regularly informed of issues concerning my departments and programs,
materials budgets and stewarded funds, and review of serials
**Met periodically with my Humanities and Social Sciences
supervisor to discuss issues about budgets and funds, programs, and
other matters. In the fall 2001, reviewed stewarded funds and wrote
letters as required.
2. Manage the Library of Congress Overseas
Acquisitions plans so that:
2.1) relevant selectors will review materials and select titles, as
well as make suggestions of profile revision, focusing this year on serials
evaluation and possible cancellation; and that Library of Congress bills
are paid by the end of October,
**Selectors reviewed South Asia materials about 4 times during
the year though we shifted the 2nd floor location of books to be reviewed;
Middle East faculty and selectors regularly reviewed title lists from Cairo
Library of Congress (on average about 4 lists of 12 titles per week, except
the special Cairo Book Fair for two weeks in February 2002 when the review
increased to the same amount per day).
** South Asia serials were evaluated by Science and Engineering
library selectors and 4 were cancelled. With Middle East faculty
advice, 5 of 9 Middle East newspapers were cancelled.
**Two of the Library of Congress bills (Pakistan and
Iran) were paid by the end of October, while the two larger bills (South
Asia and Middle East-Cairo) were discussed and funds managed for their
payment by the end of November using special Federal Express procedures.
Because of possible anthrax presence, the first two bills were never
delivered when the Congressional postal system was shut down in October
2001; thus, in April and May 2002 special efforts had to be made to pay
again those two LC bills plus the Kenya LC bill.
2.2) my staff will receive training and develop the skills to process
these materials and serve library customers;
**The staff took various classes and set up individual
instruction and training sessions in order to develop their skills.
I worked with my Tibetan staff member to develop his Learning Plan.
2.3) materials will be reviewed and re-located or deselected to
improve access and the quality of the collection.
**Some Middle East materials
3. Help coordinate with staff to make Middle East and Tibetan
materials readily available to researchers.
**Worked with the Tibetan staff member to ensure proper
location of reference, monograhic, and serials materials.
**Worked with the Middle East staff member to ensure selected
ordered titles were listed in VIRGO and received and added as packages
arrived; that serials were properly identified and added; and that
newspapers were quickly made available to researchers.
**With the Library's need to reorganize positions and
rearrange location of library staff, helped in the discussion,
organization, negotiation, and arrange during September through December
2001 with other library members to move the Middle East staff position to
the 4th floor Cataloging department.
Ensure cooperation with the Tibetan digital information community
project and support its developments.
**My Tibetan staff member and I worked with Tibetan digital
project members to support their activities; helping to make physical
office space available for project members.
**Chaired the library-wide search committee to hire a Tibetan
Studies Coordinator for the library's Information Community projects,
working from August 2001 through January 2002; selected committee members
including a member from the Religious Studies department; worked closely
with the library's Human Resources director and assistant, to set up
meetings, working in 4 stages: 1) to develop a position description, 2)
publicize and announce the position 3) receive, evaluate and rate
candidates' applications, 4) organize and conduct on-site or distant
interviews, and 5) make a selection to recommend to the Library for hiring.
The committee successfully worked intensely for the first 3 stages and was
starting to organize and set up interviews, when the search was suspended
because of the state budget reductions. Subsequently there were 2 meetings
in January 2002 to try to arrange for some continuation and coordination of
on-going digital projects, and a library faculty member was selected to
devote half of his time to this effort. In spite of the incompletion of the
search, much was learned about various library processes, about other
librarians, and about the issues involved with both the selection of
library faculty and the library issues involved with a community
4. Continue strong involvement with electronic initiatives, so that
4.1) the library's goal to digitize and add materials to the
collection are furthered, and
**Reviewed 2 national grant proposals for digital library
projects in November 2001 (one through the University of Chicago and one
through the University of Virginia) and agreed to devote as much as 10% of
my time to the projects, if funded.
**Continued to add digital content, database files, and Table
of Contents listings throughout the year; examples are the weekly Dawn
newspaper from Pakistan, and TOCs of Social Sciences, Biblio, Seminar, and
Indian Economic and Social History Review. Two new web resources make the
TOC listings possibly redundant and unnecessary to continue: the Digital
South Asia Library has added full-text and TOC access to the Social
Scientist; and the Biblio has established its own web site, with full-text
access to some of its articles. Neither, however, are as yet as up-to-date
as my listings. Worked with other librarians to manage the database of
Middle East titles.
**Purchased and added, as requested, full-text
database of a digest of 1990s Sri Lanka newspapers.
**Attended sessions on digital topics: Intellectual
Property talk by UVa Patent Foundation executive director Robert MacWright,
a presentation of the Rossetti project, Ayers' Valley of the Shadow,
Seaman's digital bibliographic journal, and a Staples' meeting on FEDORA
and the digital library.
**Page Barbour digitization projects. Worked with Clemons Media
Lab members to digitize sound cassettes of Bayly lectures (April 2001);
helped plan and organize the recording of the 2002 April Page Barbour
lectures by Shulman. Continue to work to publish these items on the web --
full-text, abstracts, and linked to digital sound recordings.
**Participated in the one-day workshop on epublishing in
March 2002 at the University of Virginia, listening to presentations and
discussions by international leaders in the field of epublishing, and
gaining insight into future trends and learning of the great variety of
4.2) electronics resources and services for customers are publicized,
improved, and made readily available. Focus on the Electronic Theses and
Dissertation intiative, on other scholarly online communication, and on
various electronic services to make them easily available and useful to
**Maintain and update 5 library-wide web pages
(see links below) to provide information about subject selectors and
**The Electronic Theses and Dissertation committee met
from May through August 2001, at which time we decided our
recommendations and sent them to the library administration for the
further development of that library digital initiative.
Continue to participate in and promote the Scholarly Digital Support
**As an SDS Policy committee member, met about 10 times in the
summer and fall of 2001 to discuss how to evaluate digital and
non-digital materials for selection and collection in the library of
the present and future. In the winter and spring of 2002, attended
presentations of digital librarians and separately met in IATH to discuss
their ideas and the University of Virginia programs, including Jerry
McDonough of New York University Digital Library group, Stephen Chapman of
Harvard University, Anne Kenney of Cornell University, and Heather MacNeil
of the University of British Columbia.
5. Identify and pursue appropriate professional development
opportunities so that new skills can be developed or present skills can be
improved that will better serve library customers
**New reference work. Agreed to begin working at the library's
general reference desk (from January 2002 on); learned much in 4 hours of
training under reference staff and evaluating reference materials, and
worked two hours a week at the reference desk, gaining new insight and
perspective of what current customers wish from the library and what
materials they use most often and like best.
**Attended classes on PDF creation, VIRGO searching, database
searching, using Google, Sirsi workflows, and Dreamweaver; and had
individual sessions on Dreamweaver and Sirsi workflows.
**Attended several classes in the Clemons Media Lab in order to
develop digital skills for scanning, digital still camera use, video
camera, videography, digital sound recording, and making digital content
available on the web, mainly in February and March 2002.
6. Additional activities.
**Continued on the executive committee of the national
Committee on South Asia Libraries and Documentation (CONSALD), as
co-editor of the online South Asia Libraries News and Queries (SALNAQ)
journal, attending conferences and participating in meetings at Madison,
Wisconsin (October 2001) and Washington, D.C. (April 2002). Continued as
the webmaster for CONSALD, publishing web pages such as for minutes.
**Managed the funds and orders for the University of Virginia
Center for South Asian Studies; attended their seminars, and their
semester meetings, contributing to their newsletter with information about
South Asia resources in the library.
**Consultation. Provided information and consultation over 1.5
months by email with a World Book Encyclopedia writer, assiting him on
correctly identifying historical dynasties and topics for articles on the 3
new states in India.
**Web Resource My information resources and web site, which I established some years
ago and which I maintain, on the Indian Parliamentarian
Phoolan Devi, the
"Bandit Queen", received a huge number of hits following her assassination
in Delhi in early August 2001, as she was returning home from Parliament.
Helped add additional information, web pages, and links at that time.
--Philip McEldowney, May 2002.
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