DSS represents Lafayette at Digital Library Federation Conference

DLFrev1BL_notag_200Eric Luhrs, Head of the Library’s Digital Scholarship Services, delivered a presentation at this year’s Digital Library Federation conference in Atlanta this week. The DLF is the premiere venue for digital scholarship in libraries. The yearly conference brings together librarians, scholars, and digital experts to discuss the role of the library and librarians in the evolving landscape of digital scholarship and preservation. Luhrs presented on the panel “Catastrophic Success: The Challenges and Opportunities of Supporting Digital Scholarship at Liberal Arts Colleges” alongside of his colleagues Kelcy Shepherd (Amherst College), Laurie Allen (Haverford College), Gina Siesing (Bryn Mawr College) and
Jennifer Vinopal (New York University).

This panel, which emerged from a Liberal Arts College working group organized by Lafayette at last year’s DLF conference, has written a Manifesto on Digital Scholarship at Liberal Arts Colleges that articulates the members’ commitment to developing a strong foundation for digital methods and research no matter the size of the school or perceived limitations.

Luhrs highlighted the strengths of the DSS team in building customized research environments and the flexibility they have in their autonomy, while calling attention to the limitations of resources and time endemic to digital scholarship at small liberal arts colleges when compared to the collaboratories, scholars’  labs, and digital centers at high profile research universities.


DSS team members James Griffin, Eric Luhrs, and Thom Goodnow at DLF.

DLF_Poster_print_small copy

DSS poster

Luhrs along with James Griffin, Digital Library Developer, and Thom Goodnow, Integrated Technologies Librarian, showcased these possibilities in a poster presentation describing how this small team has been able to streamline DSS’ project development processes.  By migrating from a multiplicity of platforms onto Islandora and adopting methodologies and workflows inspired by agile software development practices, the team can now develop a greater variety of digital tools and virtual research environments than previously possible. Their dedication and hard work has allowed the team to expand services and support innovation in scholarly research and digital scholarship across campus.

For more information on starting a digital project with DSS or applying for an internship opportunity contact us at digital@lafayette.edu, or call (610) 330-5796.


New GIS Workshops: Mapping on the Web

Digital Scholarship Services has added two new sessions to its popular lunchtime GIS workshop series. Data Visualization & GIS Librarian John Clark will be showcasing user friendly, web-based GIS tools appropriate for any skill level.

Register for one or both of these great new sessions today.

Exploring Google Maps

Friday, October 24th – 12:10 to 1:00pm  Skillman 003


There is a lot more to Google Maps than meets the eye. Get a glimpse of what goes on “under the hood” of this online mapping resource and how you can use it to make your own customized maps. Participants will learn how to contribute their own content to a Google Map as well as many other tips and tricks for creating useful and well designed maps with nothing more than a web browser. Windows laptops will be provided for all participants, but feel free to bring your own.

Lunch provided. Please RSVP by Friday October 17th to John Clark, Data Visualization & GIS Librarian (clarkjh@lafayette.edu)

Link to calendar: https://calendar.lafayette.edu/node/12256

Exploring GIS on the web

Friday, October 31st – 12:10 to 1:00pm   Skillman 003


The web is rich in online GIS projects which allow us to explore research results in maps while controlling certain parameters in our browsers. For instance many projects are designed to tell a story with maps while allowing users to manipulate the time frame or the types of data mapped. In addition there are a number of GIS sites, called data portals, which allow users to search a map interface for geospatial data which they can use for creating their own online maps without resorting to cumbersome GIS software. Participants will be introduced to one such portal, Social Explorer®, a socio-economic database available to the Lafayette community through a subscription at Skillman Library. Following a map making exercise using this site we will explore other scholarly web GIS projects, focused largely on historical research. No GIS experience or knowledge is necessary to enjoy this casual exploration of online mapping. Windows laptops will be provided for all participants, but feel free to bring your own.

Lunch provided. Please RSVP by Friday October 24th  to John Clark, Data Visualization & GIS Librarian – clarkjh@lafayette.edu

Link to calendar: https://calendar.lafayette.edu/node/12257