Tag Archives: UKSG

Firm foundations: access to high-quality materials-science information underpins Ethiopia’s construction work
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This week, INASP’s Anne Powell spoke at the UKSG Forum in London. In her presentation, she reflected on the role that INASP plays in supporting the research priorities of countries like Ethiopia. At the UKSG Forum on Wednesday 18th November I was lucky enough to present one of the lightning talks in the afternoon session on “Supporting authors from an HEI perspective”. Having heard experiences from the Universities of Nottingham and Huddersfield in the UK, I was able to share some perspectives about developing-country research. The example that I shared was from my visit to Ethiopia earlier this year when I saw the amount of construction taking place, notably of seven-storey office or apartment buildings. These, my Ethiopian hosts told me, are owned by Ethiopians and destined for occupancy by Ethiopians, truly feeding into the local economy and development. The new buildings are situated on roads that double up as … Continue reading

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Spreadsheets – a waste of time or a means to an end?
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I was one of a number of people in the room who sat up smartly when Ross MacIntyre opened his presentation at the 2012 UKSG conference by saying that spreadsheets are a waste of intellectual ability. Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) is crucial, and we need the appropriate information to inform and support our decisions, but this information is a means to an end and it is all too easy to get so involved in collecting and storing the information that we run out of time or energy to do anything with it. Librarians have moved beyond the point where just having the data is enough, we now see this a way to improving our library service. Time and effort needs to be focussed on interpretation and use, not downloading statistics and finding our own methods (usually in Excel) to produce comparable reports.

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