Georgia State University Library releases Library Instruction Recorder plugin as Open Source

Library Instruction RecorderAs part of its commitment to the free culture movement, Georgia State University Library is pleased to announce the initial release of the Library Instruction Recorder (LIR). LIR is a free, open source WordPress plugin that allows librarians and library staff to record and report on library instruction sessions.

User education is a core value of Librarianship, and Georgia State University Library takes that commitment seriously by providing a variety of instruction sessions and self-directed learning tools to both students and faculty. To continue recording and reporting on library instruction sessions, the library needed a tool that was simple, easy-to-use, effective, and focused solely on library instruction needs – finding none, we decided to create our own!

LIR is available for download from the WordPress Plugin Directory, and the source code is available on BitBucket.

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New Faculty Publication: East Meets East: Chinese Discover the Modern World in Japan, 1854–1898: A Window on the Intellectual and Social Transformation of Modern China

cover, Douglas Reynolds, East Meets East
Department of History professor Douglas R. Reynolds, along with Carol Reynolds, has recently published the book East Meets East: Chinese Discover the Modern World in Japan, 1854–1898: A Window on the Intellectual and Social Transformation of Modern China (2014).

From the publishers’ information:

Through the lives of Chinese diplomats and their careers, East Meets East explores three important dimensions of modern Chinese history: Chinese discovery of the modern world in Japan; reports on Japan suppressed by higher authorities because of their insistent objectivity and non-Sinocentric perspective; and state-sponsored innovations to meet crises which opened the gates to intellectual and social transformations at the grassroots. Meaty reports on Japan directly informed the Hundred Days Reforms of 1898 while, inside China since 1861, extrabureaucratic government Ju (Bureaus)—industrial arsenals, navy yards, translation bureaus and schools, mines, shipping, textiles, telegraphy, and railroads—demanded the talents of “irregular path” (yitu) persons having new knowledge distinct from “regular path” (zhengtu) bureaucrats. Against this background it becomes much clearer why the Xinzheng modernization reforms after 1901 took hold and why after 1912 elites old and new rejected Yuan Shikai’s bid to restore the imperial order in 1915–16. After 1916, there was no going back. The old order and era were truly “gone with the wind.”

Prof. Reynolds specializes in modern Chinese history and teaches courses in all periods of Chinese and Japanese history. He is also the author of the following books:

and the following articles:

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Authors Alliance

A new organization called the Authors Alliance launched last May that seeks to represent authors that fall outside of the type of popular author represented by the Authors Guild.  According to their website:

The mission of Authors Alliance is to further the public interest in facilitating widespread access to works of authorship by assisting and representing authors who want to disseminate knowledge and products of the imagination broadly. We provide information and tools designed to help authors better understand and manage key legal, technological, and institutional aspects of authorship in the digital age. We are also a voice for authors in discussions about public and institutional policies that might promote or inhibit the broad dissemination they seek.

The Author’s Alliance was created by Pam Samuelson and others in response to their concern that the Authors Guild does not adequately represent the views and needs of many authors. For example, speaking to Publishers Weekly, Samuelson notes lawsuits against Google and HathiTrust over the book digitization project undertaken by Google and a number of university libraries, and argues that many, if not most, of the authors represented in that corpus would support the project as a way to make their works more findable.

Author T.J. Stiles, board member of the Authors Guild, sent a strong statement to the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto about the Authors Alliance.

If any of you earn a living as a writer, or hope to, I strongly urge you not to join the Authors Alliance. If you think authors should be the ones to decide what is done with their books, then I strongly urge you not to join.

However, if you are an academic, or scorn the idea of making a living from writing as a quest for “fame and fortune,” the Authors Alliance may be the organization for you.

The concern behind this statement is that the Authors Alliance is interested in copyright reform. The group released a Principles and Proposals for Copyright Reform developed around four principles:

We propose four principles that should guide copyright law and appropriately align the interests of individual creators with the interests of the public for whom they create:

1. Further empower authors to disseminate their works.

2. Improve information flows about copyright ownership.

3. Affirm the vitality of limits on copyright that enable us to do our work and reach our audiences.

4. Ensure that copyright’s remedies and enforcement mechanisms protect our interests

Many academic authors are motivated to publish by a desire to share useful research and advance scholarship in their disciplines rather than a desire for “fame and fortune.”  Copyright Transfer Agreements proffered by many traditional publishers hinder access to published research, restrict the author’s ability to share the work, and are confusing or misleading.

The Authors Alliance will focus on helping authors manage their rights, reach new audiences, authorship law and policy, and authorial reputation and integrity.

Interested in learning more?

Founder of Just-Launched Authors Alliance Talks to PW

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First Year Book: March Book One

The First-Year Book program at Georgia State University provides all incoming freshmen with a common intellectual experience to stimulate discussion, to promote critical thinking, and to develop a sense of community among first-year students, faculty, and staff. This year’s selection, the first graphic novel chosen for Georgia State University’s freshmen students, is March Book One.  The first in a graphic novel trilogy written by Congressman John Lewis in collaboration with co-writer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell, March is a vivid first-hand account of Lewis’ lifelong struggle for civil and human rights, meditating in the modern age on the distance traveled since the days of Jim Crow and segregation. Rooted in his personal story, it also reflects on the highs and lows of the broader Civil Rights Movement.

The Georgia State University Library research guide for March provides links to research resources such as images from the Atlanta Journal Constitution Photographs digital collections, reviews, videos, books, and related historical research databases such as the Atlanta Daily World 1931-2003March can be found in the Georgia State University Library and the Georgia State University Law Library.

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Ferguson, Missouri: Difficult Stories

map of Ferguson, Missouri in relation to St. Louis City

Ferguson, MO. Click to enlarge.

On Saturday, August 9, a Ferguson, Missouri police officer shot and killed Michael Brown, age 18, a graduate of Normandy High School who was about to begin classes at Vatterott College on Monday, August 11. Details remain murky but there is agreement in the press that the young man was unarmed. Tensions continue to flare in Ferguson, a suburb of St. Louis. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch has reported that Benjamin L. Crump, the Florida civil rights lawyer who represented the family of Trayvon Martin, has been hired by the Brown family; additionally, the Post-Dispatch reports, Attorney General Eric Holder has asked for civil rights lawyers in the Justice Department to monitor this case, and the FBI is reportedly working with the St. Louis County Police Department to investigate the shooting. Crump and other civil rights leaders, including Cornell Brooks, president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), spoke Monday at a town hall meeting. The shooting and its aftermath have begun to receive national attention, with some coverage in the New York Times, by NPR (among other venues). has compiled a list of what is currently known and what remains unclear.

Race has historically been a factor in the shaping of St. Louis and St. Louis County. University of Iowa history professor Colin Gordon has created the digital project Mapping Decline: St. Louis and the American City, which uses digital census geography, archival maps, and historical and contemporary datasets to track migration and demographic patterns in St. Louis and St. Louis County from 1940-2000. Mapping Decline (and its accompanying book Mapping Decline: St. Louis and the Fate of the American City) focuses on four themes: white flight; race and property; municipal zoning; and urban renewal.

Ferguson is immediately to the east of Kinloch, the first African-American community in Missouri. In the 1980s the city bought out land in Kinloch towards a proposed expansion of the municipally owned Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, displacing more than 70% of Kinloch’s population. In 1975, in the case of US v. State of Missouri, a US District Court ordered the Ferguson-Florissant School District (Florissant is immediately north of Ferguson) to annex the Kinloch School District and the adjacent Berkeley School District. In the 1976-1977 school year the Ferguson-Florissant Reorganized district underwent desegregation. Thus St. Louis County—and Ferguson—was part of the broader struggles over desegregation which have gripped (and continue to grip) the St. Louis metropolitan area since the Brown vs. Board of Higher Education decision in 1954.

For local coverage of this ongoing story, see the following (though there have been concerns that the media has misrepresented details of the shooting and protests):

To learn more about St. Louis and St. Louis County’s history, see these sources (among others):

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Posted in African American Studies, Books, Databases, For Faculty, For Graduate Students, For Students, History | 2 Comments

J. Mack Robinson College of Business’ New Dean

Richard D. Phillips, Dean of J. Mack Robinson College of Business

Richard D. Phillips has replaced Fenwick Huss as Dean of the J. Mack Robinson College of Business. Phillips, who holds a Ph.D. in Insurance and Finance from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, joined Robinson in 1994 as an assistant professor. He served as chair of the Risk Management and Insurance Department from 2006-2012. In 2012 he was named Associate Dean for Academic Initiatives and Innovation at Robinson. Phillips is the C.V. Starr Professor of Risk Management and Insurance. Huss, who served as Robinson’s dean for the previous decade, resigned last year to accept a deanship at Baruch College’s Zicklin School of Business in New York City.

Phillips’ research interests include the financial risk management practices of insurers, financial pricing models of insurance, and various regulatory issues as they pertain to the insurance industry. He is currently co-editor of the Journal of Risk and Insurance and he is the author of over 40 scholarly articles.

Check out some of his recent publications:

Doherty N., Kartasheva, A., Phillips, R. D.  (2012). Information Effect of Entry into Credit Ratings Market: The Case of Insurers’ Ratings. Journal of Financial Economics, 106(2), 308-330.

Erhemjamts, O., & Phillips, R. D. (2012). Form Over Matter: Differences in the Incentives to Convert Using Full Versus Partial Demutualization in the U.S. Life Insurance IndustryJournal Of Risk & Insurance79(2), 305-334

Cummins, J., & Phillips, R. D. (2009). Capital Adequacy and Insurance Risk-Based Capital Systems. Journal Of Insurance Regulation, 28(1), 25-72.

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Research on Resilience and Disability

GSU Sociology Professor Ben Kail

GSU Sociology & Gerontology Professor Ben Kail

Checkout this recent research publication by GSU Sociology Department and Affiliate Faculty Member of the Gerontology Institute Professor Ben Kail and colleagues:

Manning, Lydia K., Dawn C. Carr, and Ben Lennox Kail. 2014. “Do Higher Levels of Resilience Buffer the Deleterious Impact of Chronic Illness on Disability in Later Life?” The Gerontologist [published online July 25, 2014].*

Drawing a sample of 10,753 Americans between the ages of 51 and 98 from the Health and Retirement Study (2006–2010), Kail et al., via statistical analysis, explored the influence of resilience – “the ability to navigate adversity in a manner that protects well-being” – on changes in disability among the sampled participants over a 2-year period.  They found that resilience “protects against increases in ADL [activities of daily living] and IADL [instrumental activities of daily living] limitations that are often associated with aging” and that it “mitigates a considerable amount of the deleterious consequences related to the onset of chronic illness and subsequent disability.” (from Abstract)

Also check out some of Dr. Kail’s related works:

*Articles note that all authors contributed equally to the studies.

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New Database: JoVE Neuroscience

The Georgia State University Library now has access to JoVE Neuroscience.

JoVE Neuroscience is a multidisciplinary section of the Journal of Visualized Experiments: a peer reviewed, PubMed indexed journal devoted to the publication of biological, medical, chemical and physical research in a video format.

JoVE Neuroscience is devoted to investigations of the structure, function, physiology, and pathophysiology of the brain and nervous system. Included methodologies range from molecular and cellular level studies to full central and peripheral neural systems. Potential treatment platforms and surgical techniques for neurological diseases and disorders are also presented in this section.

JoVE Neuroscience and JoVE Biology (formerly JoVE General) can be accessed by selecting “J” under “Databases by Name A-Z” on the Library homepage.

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Publication Retractions Take YEARS to Appear in PubMed

Performing a complex literature review can be challenging; taking into account whether the resulting articles have been retracted, have erratum or have been corrected and republished makes the task even more difficult.

Researchers in Lyon, France found that the time-lag between articles being pulled from a journal and being noted as retracted in PubMed is nearly three years.  (Read the paper, “What time-lag for a retraction search on PubMed?” here.)

Several online publications track news of retractions and may help alert you to recently retracted articles.

If you’ve set up a personal account in My NCBI you can add filters to show the number of retracted publications on the side menu in your search results.  You can also set up alerts for your research topic and have emails sent to you when citations are indexed as “retracted.”  Haven’t set up a My NCBI account yet?  Ask your friendly librarian for help or watch this tutorial from NLM.

NLM’s official fact sheet on retractions and errata may be found here.



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World Health Organization joins Europe PubMed Central

The World Health Organisation (WHO), now follows an open access policy to ensure the widespread dissemination of scientific research. The policy applies to all WHO-authored or WHO-funded research published in external journals and books.

From the WHO website:

Journal articles or book chapters produced by individuals or institutions who are funded in whole or in part by WHO must be published in one of the following ways:

  • in an open-access journal (such as those published by BioMed Central, Hindawi and PLoS);
  • in a subscription journal that offers a hybrid open-access fee option (most subscription journals now offer the option for authors to pay a fee to ensure that their articles are openly accessible);.
  • in a subscription journal that allows authors to deposit the accepted author manuscript in Europe PubMed Central within 12 months of the date of publication.

Hundreds of Georgia State University faculty and graduate students publish their research in open access journals available through PubMed Central (PMC) and through the GSU Library’s research repository ScholarWorks.  Here is a sampling of GSU authors cited in PMC:

  • Center for Inflammation, Immunity & Infection, and Department of Biology
    Young-Tae Lee, Ki-Hye Kim, Eun-Ju Ko, Yu-Na Lee, Min-Chul Kim, Young-Man Kwon, Yinghua Tang, Min-Kyoung Cho, Youn-Jeong Lee, Sang-Moo Kang. New vaccines against influenza virus. Clin Exp Vaccine Res. 2014 January; 3(1): 12–28. Published online 2013 December 18. doi: 10.7774/cevr.2014.3.1.12

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Posted in Digital Collections, Faculty Publications and Research, For Faculty, For Graduate Students, For Students, Graduate Student Publications and Research, Publications and Research, ScholarWorks @ Georgia State University | Tagged , , | Leave a comment