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Transportation Division Bulletin
Kaleidoscope: News of TRN Members

April 2007

Contents

New Book Utilizes Library Photo Archive

An introduction to Tranzinfo – the transport library network of Australia and New Zealand

Big 10 Universities Complete Microfilming of Railroad Collections

300,000th record entered in Transportation Library’s periodical index

Transportation Library Pooled Fund Study: Celebrating National Library Week with Ongoing and New Initiatives

SLA Annual Meeting Sessions

Wisconsin DOT Library’s “iCommons” Study

Membership News:
New Members
New Member Profiles: Richard Jackson and Michel Gauthier

 

New Book Utilizes Library Photo Archive
by Matthew Barrett, Administrator, Dorothy Peyton Gray Transportation Library & Archive, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority

The Library completed a project to utilize our archive photo collection to promote the library and earn a few dollars, too. Previously we had created historical image postcard collections to promote the library and archive, but since they were give-aways, we didn’t earn anything from it other than attention and admiration from our local community. This project produced a professionally published book available via Amazon and bookstores nationwide, and we earn royalties for each copy sold.

Arcadia http://www.arcadiapublishing.com/index.html is a publisher of local history books utilizing historic photo collections. They have published some 700+ books so far using local and less visible collections. We contacted them and presented a proposal for a book based on our collection of Los Angeles Pacific Electric streetcar photographs. We met with an Arcadia representative who advised us on our application, the process, and what they would like to see in the final product. After the proposal was accepted, they provided some parameters for digital scan resolution and the accompanying text. Our part-time archivist and historian Jim Walker assembled the photo scans, captions and chapter text for submission to Arcadia . The finished product was released soon thereafter. The entire process took less than six months. You may have seen Arcadia ’s “Images of America” series in your local book store or online; they also have an “Images in Rail” series that our proposal fit nicely into.

Pacific Electric Red Cars, by Jim Walker and the Dorothy Peyton Gray Transportation Library:
Amazon http://snipurl.com/1cl42
Arcadia Press http://snipurl.com/1cl4a
Barnes and Noble http://snipurl.com/1cl4f

We are now working on a second book using another photo collection in our archive of the Los Angeles Railway. For libraries looking for new ways to leverage historical images as an asset; using Arcadia Publishing’s process might be an option to consider.

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An introduction to Tranzinfo – the transport library network of Australia and New Zealand
by Andrew Meier, Library Manager, ARRB Group Ltd., Australia

I’m not sure what images come to the mind of residents in the United States when one mentions the countries of Australia and New Zealand. Crikey! The late Steve Irwin? Nicole Kidman? NBL player Andrew Bogut? Or the settings for the Lord of the Rings movies, perhaps?

While Tranzinfo isn’t exactly a universally recognized brand (not yet, anyway), this article aims to introduce you to what your transport library colleagues in Australasia have been collaborating on in recent years, and give you a new talking point when someone mentions our part of the world.

Transport-related libraries in Australasia have been working together since the early 1990's in resource sharing activities. Formerly Translib, and now Tranzinfo, the Australasian network of transport-related libraries currently claims 22 libraries as members across all states and territories in Australia and 4 member libraries in New Zealand. To view the full list of member libraries go to: http://www.arrb.com.au/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=226&Itemid=211

For some years now the Tranzinfo network has shared collection information and operated loan agreements.

Participating libraries have traditionally provided their periodical holdings details for inclusion in the network Union List document. This has then been used not only for interlibrary loans but for some libraries to make acquisition decisions, knowing that they were subscribing (or planning to subscribe) to a serial unique to the network.

In 2007 this Union List will be replaced with an automated interlibrary loan system. 16 libraries will share their journals holdings on a members-only network, which will incorporate forms for automating the sending and receiving interlibrary loan requests. While the system will be launched with journal holdings, runs of conference proceedings (e.g., 3 or more proceedings of conference that occurs annually or biennially) will also be incorporated in the near future. The system will also provide the network with maintained listservs, allowing members to have separate communication groups for those involved in interlibrary loan and reference duties, as well a listserv for all network members.

The Tranzinfo committee has also coordinated consortia purchasing opportunities. Members have been able to access reduced prices on electronic products by choosing to be part of a group purchase deal. This is not a frequent occurrence but is pursued when a product is identified that a large enough number of member libraries is interested in, and for which the vendors are willing to negotiate a group purchase price.

Since 2005 the Tranzinfo network has also coordinated a network current awareness service. “Hot Topics” is a bi-monthly bulletin offering information on recently published resources on a particular topic which has been identified as being of interest to a range of our member’s clients. Member libraries are on a roster to produce a particular issue, with topic selection and formatting overseen by a group of coordinators.

To date, bulletins have covered safety, financing, security, human resource, construction and environmental issues. To view all released “Hot Topics” bulletins, please visit: http://www.arrb.com.au/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=356&Itemid=299

The network holds an annual meeting in alternating geographical locations each year. Travel costs remain a barrier for members, so varying the location is an attempt to maximize attendance opportunities. Unfortunately annual meetings in recent years have been in Australian capital cities, meaning our New Zealand members have not been able to attend in person.

The news page of the Tranzinfo website includes the minutes from the 2006 meeting held in Sydney: http://www.arrb.com.au/index.php?option=com_blogs&blog=tranzinfo&Itemid=212

The network continues to pursue options for sharing resources and expertise among members. March 2007 will see the first telephone conference of staff from member libraries involved in reference activities. This forum is designed to foster communication among reference specialists, with the hope of sharing new ideas and spreading knowledge of member backgrounds and skills (e.g. previous work in legal, medical or business fields). Telephone conferences are at this stage planned for each quarter of 2007, after which the success of the group will be reviewed.

Many Tranzinfo members actively follow the comments and activities of our US counterparts through the TRANLib email list. We hope that this article has now introduced you to the activities of your colleagues in Australia and New Zealand.

As you can see we’re too busy to wrestle crocodiles, win Oscars, be a No.1 draft pick, or feature in Peter Jackson movies anyway!

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Big 10 Universities Complete Microfilming of Railroad Collections
by Roberto A. Sarmiento, Head, Transportation Library, Northwestern University

Four university libraries of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) have just completed the massive project of reformatting a large collection of endangered paper copies of railroad journals and books dating from 1832 to 1975 to archival-quality microfilm. The 46 journal titles (1,319 volumes) and 217 books targeted for this project reflect the history of United States railroads from its beginnings through its Golden Age and into the decline of railroad influence in the mid- to late-twentieth century.

Sponsored by a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant, the two-year project involved work by the libraries at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Iowa, Northwestern University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Availability of the microfilm for both interlibrary lending and purchase will greatly enhance access to these journals and books in cases where the originals are too fragile for circulation, thus, extending and expanding the useful research life of the selected titles for generations to come.

The microfilmed titles encompass an extremely wide array of research interests of appeal to a broad range of users, including university faculty and students, independent researchers, corporations and businesses, governmental policy makers, family genealogists, and hobbyists.

This project is the latest in the CIC-NEH’s partnership for the preservation of railroad collections and confirms the CIC’s commitment to the preservation of collections at risk.

For further information about the project, a list of journals and books microfilmed, and contact information, please visit http://www.library.northwestern.edu/transportation/cic8/cic8.html

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300,000th record entered in Transportation Library’s periodical index
by Roberto A. Sarmiento, Head, Transportation Library, Northwestern University

On November 30, 2006, the Northwestern University Transportation Library indexed its 300,000th record into TRANweb: the Transportation Library Periodical Index.

TRANweb contains bibliographic citations for journal articles, conference proceedings and books received by the library on transportation and law enforcement topics. Coverage extends back through 1979 for trade journals and through 1976 for scholarly journals. In addition, articles issued through the Transportation Center or the Center for Public Safety (formerly The Traffic Institute), published prior to 1979, have also been added to the index.

Roughly 75% of the trade and scholarly journals, conference proceedings, and books indexed are published in the US, and at the present time, all records are from English-language publications. At least 15% of the indexed records include links to full-text articles. TRANweb grows by about 50,000 citations every four years; it reached 200,000 records in 1998 and 250,000 records in 2002.

For the past 20 years, TRANweb has also been a significant contributor to the world’s largest and most comprehensive bibliographic resource on transportation information: the Transportation Research Information Services (TRIS) database. Produced by the National Research Council’s Transportation Research Board (TRB), TRIS contains more than 643,000 records of published and ongoing research, of which more than 117,000, or 18%, were contributed by the Northwestern University Transportation Library.

The TRIS database is available on the Web as TRIS Online through the Bureau of Transportation Statistics' National Transportation Library.

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Transportation Library Pooled Fund Study: Celebrating National Library Week with Ongoing and New Initiatives
by Christi Powers, Project Coordinator, Library Connectivity Pooled Fund

Transportation Research Board (TRB) session 236 on January 22, 2007 was well received and drew nearly 60 participants from various transportation disciplines. The “Transportation Information Revolution: World at Your Doorstep” panel featured a mix of library and transportation professionals who presented success stories and ideas for future transportation research. Many thanks to all panelists and attendees, in addition to Sandy Tucker, chair of the TRB LIST committee, for co-sponsoring the session.

We are pleased to announce extension of the two-year Transportation Library Connectivity pooled fund study through 2009. Solicitation for new and existing members is now in full swing. Projected goals and deliverables will be discussed later this month and plans are materializing for the 2007 Transportation Library Connectivity annual meeting. Slated for September 18 to 21, 2007 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Pyle Center, the meeting will be held in conjunction with the Midwest Transportation Knowledge Network.

The pool fund study continues to make progress in areas of outreach and advocacy. Maggie Sacco, technical consultant of CTC & Associates, will present at the Government Transportation Resources and Information Committee (GTRIC) meeting at the Special Library Association’s annual conference in Denver, June 3 to 6, 2007. In addition, we are working with staff from the American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials (AASHTO) to create a special task force advisory committee. Plans would include building on recommendations from TRB Special Report 284 and linking library professionals to help build regional transportation knowledge networks. One such initiative, the Western Transportation Knowledge Network (WTKN), held its second teleconference on February 28, 2007. Spearheaded by the Washington State DOT, and underwritten by the pooled fund study, a total of 20 transportation librarians participated in the call, and plans are underway for a third teleconference in April.

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SLA Annual Meeting Sessions: GTRIC – Government Transportation Research and Information Committee
by Rita Evans, Director, Institute of Transportation Studies Library University of California

If you want to hear the latest developments in research and information for transportation, be sure to attend GTRIC on Sunday at the Annual Conference. In addition to a great line-up of speakers who will fill you in on the latest developments, you’ll have the opportunity to meet other transportation librarians and share ideas for effectively managing information.

National Transportation Library
Library Director Amanda Wilson will report on preservation of digital resources, improving access to research and expertise through the NTL Workroom and expert databases, and new transportation research tools such as the Google State DOT search. She also will update us on the NTL/DOT library merger, new libraries in TLCat, and cooperative initiatives with other organizations.

Transportation Research Board
TRB Information Services Manager Barbara Post will discuss TRB activities of interest to the library community including the recent availability of the Transportation Research Record on the Web. She also will describe the new Research Needs Statement Database and changes in TRIS and RiP (Research in Progress). An update on the NCHRP Project on Implementing Knowledge Networks will be provided.

Pooled Fund for Library Connectivity
The Pooled Fund Study is a grassroots effort by transportation libraries to form a transportation knowledge network. Lead Investigator Maggie Sacco will explain how the 11 members from 10 states benefit from the technical library assistance, outreach and advocacy efforts of the pooled fund study to improve technology transfer by enhancing the exchange of transportation information.

TLCat
Kathy Kie, Training and Implementation Specialist with OCLC, will illustrate how TLCat, the Transportation Libraries Catalog for transportation-related books and other materials held in government, university and other transportation libraries, can be used for resource sharing.

University Transportation Libraries
Northwestern University and University of California, Berkeley, library directors Roberto Sarmiento and Rita Evans will describe their research collections and services to diverse user groups. They will explain how the TLib and B/TRIS programs support transportation research and how state DOT libraries can make use of in-depth, university-based transportation resources. Roberto also will provide a brief update on the TRB LIST subcommittee review of library literature about cooperative/ coordinated acquisitions. The project supports TRB Special Report 284 – Transportation Knowledge Networks: a Strategy for the 21st Century and aims to develop transportation-specific recommendations, guidelines and/or requirements for such a program at the regional or national level.

International Developments
Birgitta Sandstedt, director of The Library and Information Centre at the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute, will describe the center’s services and provide an overview of plans based on the national investigation TRANSIF (the future supply of information within the transport sector). She also will report on the activities at the Nordic-Baltic Transportation Libraries. The Road and Transport Research Institute provides Sweden’s traffic and transport research community with information and knowledge and communicates research results to customers in Sweden and abroad.

International Transportation Research
We all hear that Google has changed the way people look for and use information. More agencies, universities, and other organizations are putting resources on the Web in full text. Has that really changed the way our practitioners and researchers in transportation are using information? Bonnie Osif, Pennsylvania State University, reports on a review of a sample of references in journal articles and technical reports to see what has changed since pre-Web days. A discussion on implications and future actions for transportation libraries will follow.

Panel Discussion
The GTRIC session will conclude with a panel discussion. Panelists Amanda Wilson, Rita Evans and Bonnie Osif will address some of the issues raised during the day’s presentations.

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Wisconsin DOT Library’s “iCommons” Study
by John Cherney, Wisconsin Department of Transportation Library

In order to help facilitate solutions to the technology-driven challenges of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, the Research and Library Unit has begun a research pilot study entitled the "Evaluation of an Information Commons in a State Transportation Agency.

Current WisDOT library staff and others at WisDOT are already doing much to help department employees meet these information challenges, especially through services of the new Research and Communication Services Section, which includes staff with skills in research, library, Web, visual design, multi-media and organizational development. In addition, WisDOT serves as lead state for the pooled fund study on Transportation Library Connectivity, TPF-5 (105), which is focused on making the effective transfer of information an integral part of state DOT transportation libraries.

To move even further toward its vision of "Dedicated people creating transportation solutions through innovation and exceptional service," the department is carrying out a pilot of an enhanced information delivery approach called the "information commons" or "iCommons."

The literature on the evolution of some public, academic and corporate libraries into "information commons" indicates significant benefits to users. Adoption (and adaptation) of the iCommons approach at WisDOT offers the opportunity to test its value for state transportation agencies generally. The proposed pilot coincides with the creation of the new Research and Communication Services Section and the move of the Library from the 8th floor to a much more visible location on the 1st floor of the building, next to the lobby, with expanded room for iCommons services.

In addition, the national transportation community is keenly interested in developing new and successful approaches to the capture, management, communication and application of information and technology in state agencies. WisDOT's iCommons pilot study will yield significant benefits both for the department and the national efforts to help move state DOTs into more effective strategies for dealing with information management challenges.

For more information, please contact:

John Cherney, WisDOT Head Librarian, john.cherney@dot.state.wi.us, Ann Pahnke, WisDOT Research Program, ann.pahnke@dot.state.wi.us, Maggie Sacco, Transportation Library Connectivity Pooled Fund Project, maggie.sacco@ctcandassociates.com.

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Membership News

New members of the Transportation Division

Mr. Richard Jackson
Aroq Ltd.
Seneca House
Buntsford Park Road
Brosgrove Worcester
B60 3DX, UK
richard@aroq.com

Mr. James Haske
Universal Technical Institute
Resource Center
10695 West Pierce St.
Avondale, AZ 85323
jhaske@uticorp.com

Ms. Cristina Alvy
Holland & Knight LLP, Library
195 Broadway
New York, NY 100070-3100
calvy@hklaw.com

Dr. Michel Gauthier
National Research Council, Canada
Building M-55, 1200 Montreal Road
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A0S2
Canada
Michel.Gauthier@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca

New Member Profiles

Richard Jackson is CEO of Aroq Limited, publishers of just-auto.com – the online, global business news and research service for the automotive sector. The site provides breaking news and analysis to over 150,000 readers each month. For further details visit www.just-auto.com, e-mail richard@just-auto.com or stop by stand 563 at the SLA Expo in Denver this year.

Michel Gauthier joined CISTI in May 2001 as Director of the NRC Information Services. He is responsible for the formulation, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of customized scientific, technical and medical information services to NRC staff and external clients across Canada. Michel is responsible for managing and enhancing the relationships between CISTI and our NRC stakeholders. His key challenges are to support the transition from the print to the electronic information environments, to continue the development of CISTI's local presence throughout Canada with the support of NRC Information Centre specialists in alignment with NRC's regional technology clusters strategy, and to champion CISTI’s Competitive Technical Intelligence Program.

Michel started his career as a researcher at NRC over 25 years ago. His research focused on laser chemistry, in particular on laser isotope separation, and on the spectroscopy of molecular clusters. Prior to joining CISTI, he worked as the Acting Director, VP, Technology and Industry Support Account where he forged excellent relationships with his colleagues within NRC and externally. He obtained a Ph.D. in Physics from l'Université Laval, Québec in 1973. Michel loves gardening and would start the season in early March by pruning his fruit trees and inspecting his grape vines.

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