DiSc — Digital Scholarship Services at BU Libraries was created in 2016. Our team supports research and teaching using digital tools and methods, and oversee our institutional repository OpenBU, where we provide online access to scholarly works and digital research objects produced by the faculty and research staff of the Boston University community.
The original divisional designation of DiSc was Digital Initiatives and Open Access. Many of the principles of DIOA’s statements on Library Support for Digital Scholarship, Cyberinfrastructure for Research and Learning, and Scholarly Communication and Publishing, created in 2010, still inform our work today.
- Digital scholarship support across BU
- We are available for one-on-one consultation on a variety of topics, including those related to the digital humanities, humanistic social sciences, open access policy compliance, and digital archiving and collection creation.
- We have run many workshops, from the Digital Scholarship Fundamentals series to workshops on bespoke topics. Would you like us to arrange one for your group? Please see our Services page.
- We teach. Members of DiSc have contributed syllabus material, presentations, and individual consultations and feedback to the experimental CAS digital humanities seminar for faculty and graduate students; given guest lectures and seminars in history, art history, world languages and literatures, theology, writing, and arts administration courses; and co-created with a faculty member Core Curriculum’s Digital Core: Genesis course in Spring 2019.
- We are collaborating with other units across BU to build sustainable support infrastructure for researchers engaged in digital scholarship in humanities and humanistic social sciences.
- Digital collection building. We have digitized and/or curated, and made available in OpenBU:
- BU’s theses and dissertations dating from the university’s beginnings through the present day (please note: access to some works may be embargoed or otherwise unavailable);
- CFA School of Music Concert Programs with curation work funded by BUCH Humanities Library Endowed Fund;
- African Ajami Library (African Studies Center) with digitization work funded by the British Library’s Endangered Archives Programme;
- BU’s Bostonia magazine, dating from 1900 through present day (work is ongoing);
- Walter H. Sangree Papers (African Studies Library), offering photos, field notes, manuscripts, and printed materials from Kenya and Nigeria (work is ongoing);
- and many more.
- Open access. Openness is a basic tenet of digital scholarship. We support open access at BU through:
- The implementation of BU’s opt-out open access policy, which was ratified by the University Council on February 11, 2015.
- Events and programming about open issues, including Open Access Week, OpenCon Boston 2018, Northeast Institutional Repository Day 2019, and the Crowd Cafe. We have also hosted an open textbook workshop for faculty, as well as a series of open meetups, informal gatherings to bring together those in the community interested in open.
- One-on-one consultations and faculty publications list review for items that could potentially be made openly available.
- My CV
- DiSc oversees the publications module of My CV and co-hosts open drop-in help sessions for faculty who are completing their Faculty Annual Review reports. The software system running My CV assists faculty in collecting and maintaining their scholarly and professional contributions, reducing the administrative burden on faculty members by storing scholarly data in one place. My CV replaced the previously used Faculty Annual Report system in early 2018 for most of the Charles River Campus, and is being rolled out for use by Questrom School of Business faculty in late 2019. This research information management system facilitates compliance with BU’s Open Access Policy, provides meaningful insight into our institutional research profile, and facilitates compliance with BU’s open access policy.
- Community engagement within and outside BU.
- DiSc has hosted OpenCon Boston 2018, Northeast Institutional Repositories Day (NIRD) 2019, and (with Boston College) Crowd Cafe. DiSc members have taken part in OpenCon, the Digital Library Federation Forum, National Digital Stewardship Association Digital Preservation conference, NERCOMP, the Digital Humanities conferences, and ACH 2019.
- We regularly attend, and sometimes host, events advertised through the BostonDH and BU DH mailing lists.
In 2010-11, BU Libraries were awarded a Digital Humanities Start-up Grant for a project titled Evolutionary Subject Tagging in the Humanities. The project aimed to explore possibilities for improving discovery and analysis of interdisciplinary materials in the humanities. We document the major project materials below.
- Press Release
- Biographies of the Principal Investigators
- Grant Narrative
- Project News:
- ESTHR White Paper (link to OpenBU)