National Leadership Grants
September 2011 Grant Announcement

California  |  Florida  |  Georgia  |  Illinois  |  Indiana  |  Kentucky  |  Maryland 

Massachusetts  |  Michigan  |  Minnesota  |  New Jersey  |  New York  |  North Carolina 

  |  Oregon  |  Pennsylvania  |  Rhode Island  |  Tennessee  |  Texas  |   Utah 

  |  Washington 


California State University - Long Beach, CA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $49,960; Matching Amount: $0

Contact: Dr. Donald Schwartz
Professor Emeritus

California State University and Pacific Directions will develop a strategy to collect and conserve documentation related to the Cambodian genocide during the Pol Pot regime. Long Beach, California, is home to more Cambodians than anywhere else outside Southeast Asia. This project will lay the foundations for a new type of collaborative archival collecting guided by both the archives staff and community members. The partnership is part of a broader effort by the university to establish a new research center focusing on Cambodian collections.


California Association of Museums - Santa Cruz, CA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $50,000; Matching Amount: $29,448

Contact: Ms. Celeste DeWald
Executive Director

The California Association of Museums (CAM) and its partners will explore how a statewide association and regional networks can co-create collaborative learning experiences and build an infrastructure to support the work of museum professionals and the communities they serve. Titled California Networks for Collaboration, this one-year planning project will examine how museum service providers can adopt and model twenty-first century practices and explore integrated platforms for sustainability and increased access. In addition to CAM, this planning project involves four statewide organizations, six regional networks, and one museum.



Orange County Library System - Orlando, FL
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $50,000; Matching Amount: $21,754

Contact: Mrs. Donna Bachowski
Head of Reference

Obituaries traditionally contain genealogical and historical information that is valuable for learning about a community’s heritage. Unfortunately, the number of obituaries being published through traditional media such as local newspapers is decreasing rapidly due to factors such as the financial expense for the bereaved family, as well as declining newspaper sales. As the number of published obituaries diminishes, communities are losing vital knowledge that could help future generations understand their heritage. Orange County Library System (OCLS) will work with other community partners to prototype and evaluate the feasibility of a new type of library service, an openly accessible online database of obituaries, where family and friends of the deceased can submit detailed obituaries as a tribute to their loved ones, and in doing so help build a meaningful history of the residents of the community. OCLS will explore technical, legal, financial, and other important considerations involved in providing such a service.



Georgia Public Library Service - Atlanta, GA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $97,843; Matching Amount: $52,868

Contact: Ms. Julie Walker
Deputy State Librarian

The Georgia Public Library Service (GPLS) will organize a planning committee from approximately 40 national leaders with expertise in library accessibility to plan the development of an open-source software system for libraries that serve users with visual or other impairments that prevent their use of traditional printed and text-based materials. GPLS, as the original developer of the very successful Evergreen Integrated Library System software, is uniquely qualified to lead this project to develop open-source software that helps libraries provide more effective management and delivery of "talking book" services. The planning grant activities will produce a set of core functional requirements and other information needed to guide the anticipated future development of this software.



University Undergraduate Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign -
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $239,528; Matching Amount: $101,498

Contact: Lori Mestre
Head, Undergraduate Library

Librarians and staff from the University Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will demonstrate a nontraditional approach to library services by working with students and taking a "bottom-up" collaborative design approach for mobile applications that support academic library users. By focusing on student input into which software tools are most needed, the library will gain new insights into working with undergraduate students and better understanding what they value in libraries, and experience in coordinating a user-driven software development program.


Association of College and Research Libraries - Chicago, IL
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $99,985; Matching Amount: $62,091

Contact: Ms. Mary Ellen Davis
ACRL Executive Director

Two national summits will be convened to recommend strategies that help academic libraries better demonstrate their value and better explain how their services align with the institutional goals of colleges and universities. The Association of College and Research Libraries, in partnership with the Association for Institutional Research, the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, and the Council of Independent Colleges, will collaborate to host the two events, which will serve as the basis for a white paper that summarizes findings and establishes recommendations for future action.


American Library Association - Chicago, IL
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $33,968; Matching Amount: $29,237

Contact: Ms. Deborah Robertson

The American Library Association (ALA) will conduct a four-month planning grant as the beginning of a multiyear collaboration, making StoryCorps services accessible to public libraries across the country. StoryCorps is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to record, preserve, and share the stories of Americans from all backgrounds and beliefs. Drawing on the knowledge of a diverse advisory group of library professionals, ALA and StoryCorps will convene a Board of Advisors to aid in the planning and design of this collaborative national program. In doing so, it will create a replicable model resulting in increased programming opportunities at libraries and collection growth that can benefit institutions of all sizes and their communities.


Lincoln Park Zoological Society - Chicago, IL
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $300,000; Matching Amount: $169,469

Contact: Dr. Lisa Faust
Research Biologist

Lincoln Park Zoo and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums will use simulation modeling to systematically study the sustainability of Species Survival Plans (SSPs). SSPs are used to manage and conserve the populations of endangered and threatened species, and are used by 220 zoos to manage 500 species, including tens of thousands of individual animals. As a result of this work, the zoo and aquarium community will have new tools to use in the revision of the SSP system. The project will facilitate decision making about which species get access to professional scientific management advice and which SSPs should be eliminated because their prospects for sustainability in captivity are so limited.


Northern Illinois University Libraries - DeKalb, IL
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $575,000; Matching Amount: $578,934

Contact: Ms. Lynne Thomas
Head, Rare Books and Special Collections

The Northern Illinois University Libraries and partner libraries at Chicago State University, Illinois State University, Illinois Wesleyan University, and Western Illinois University will simultaneously test multiple collaborative digital preservation solutions and evaluate the suitability of each option for small and medium-sized college and university libraries. Work will include a report on viable options, development of a potential business model for sustaining such operations, and a digital preservation planning toolkit tailored to the needs of small and medium-sized universities.



Indiana University Digital Library Program - Bloomington, IN
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $947,963; Matching Amount: $1,125,566

Contact: Mr. Jon Dunn
Director, Library Tech, and Digital Libraries

The Indiana University Digital Library Program, in partnership with Northwestern University Libraries, will develop an open-source software system to help academic libraries and archives manage digital audio and video collections and provide enhanced access to these collections. Development work will build on the past success of and lessons learned from Indiana University’s development of the open-source Variations digital music library system, which is used by a growing number of college and university libraries, and on Indiana University’s and Northwestern University’s extensive histories in providing access to digitized audio and video collections.


Indianapolis Museum of Art - Indianapolis, IN
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $420,000; Matching Amount: $510,932

Contact: Mr. Robert Stein
Deputy Director for Research, Technology, and Enga
317-923-1331 ext. 244;

Grant funding will support the development of tools and specifications for building, sharing, and preserving mobile tours that museums can use to create and deploy their own mobile experiences. Led by the Indianapolis Museum of Art, with partners from the art, history, and science museum communities, this TourML & TAP project will address significant challenges facing many museums that are planning, developing, and using mobile technology by ensuring that the content created for these tours is well described, shareable, easily migrated between authoring tools, and supports long-term preservation. The project will also facilitate consensus building among museums and the vendor community regarding the nature of mobile tours, and will offer a powerful model for how open-source and proprietary systems can coexist within the museum community.


Purdue University Libraries - West Lafayette, IN
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $249,391; Matching Amount: $221,767

Contact: Mr. Jacob Carlson
Data Research Scientist

A new generation of scientific inquiry requires researchers to be skilled in managing and using data. Purdue University Libraries will partner with the libraries of Stanford University, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Oregon to develop a training program in data information literacy for graduate students who will become the next generation of scientists. As part of the project, each university will create a team consisting of librarians and experienced researchers. Each team will develop a shareable data information literacy training curriculum for students in science/engineering graduate programs. The training materials and delivery model will be evaluated and made freely available on the project website for other libraries to use.



University of Kentucky Libraries - Lexington, KY
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $195,853; Matching Amount: $62,902

Contact: Douglas Boyd

The University of Kentucky Libraries have created an Oral History Metadata Synchronizer (OHMS) tool that allows users to search more easily for specific terms within recorded interviews, and to know exactly at what times in the interview these terms occur. Working with the MATRIX Center at Michigan State University and with partner libraries at Baylor University, Oklahoma State University, and Cleveland State University, the project team will further develop the OHMS into an open-source software tool that will be more compatible and interoperable with a variety of digital library and content management systems. This tool will enable a wide variety of libraries and archives to enrich the use of digital oral history collections. The project team also will produce multimedia tutorials on the use, installation, and deployment of the OHMS tool.



John Hopkins University Library Systems - Baltimore, MD
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $600,000; Matching Amount: $391,754

Contact: Mr. Sayeed Choudhury
Associate Dean for University Libraries

Humanities scholars are increasingly using digital technologies to create and share work. Within this new education and research climate, humanities undergraduates have unprecedented opportunities to contribute and to conduct research of real value. Johns Hopkins University Library System and its partners from Tufts University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will develop collaborative virtual work space, including collections and services, designed to support a new "collaborative lab culture." This new model will explore and demonstrate the ways that libraries can support new modes of collaboration in research and learning.



American Antiquarian Society - Worcester, MA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $49,639; Matching Amount: $27,172

Contact: Dr. Paul Erickson
Director of Academic Programs

The American Antiquarian Society (AAS), in partnership with the American Social History Project at the City University of New York Graduate Center, will conduct a collaborative planning grant designed to lay the foundation for a long-term project called Contextualizing the Visual Archive for Teaching. During the planning phase, AAS will conduct more extensive research among potential users and carry out preliminary programming on a small set of test images for an online, open-source resource that will allow visual images from any library or museum collection to be linked to collection records and other materials. This project is intended to build an interactive online interface for teachers working with high school and college students that will link historical American images to rich contextual information as well as to full catalog records.



University of Michigan Library - Ann Arbor, MI
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $948,122; Matching Amount: $2,443,334

Contact: Ms. Melissa Levine
Sr. Associate Librarian

Nearly 500,000 books were published in the United States between 1923 and 1963. Many of these titles are in the public domain, but determining the copyright status of individual books is challenging. If a work is not in the public domain, it cannot be made openly accessible online. The University of Michigan Libraries will continue work that has already investigated and recorded reliable determinations of the copyright status of more than 117,000 U.S. titles published in 1923–1963. More than half these titles were determined to be public domain, and they are now available online. With a new IMLS award, the libraries and their partners will continue making copyright determinations for U.S. titles, and will also begin making reliable copyright status determinations for foreign-published titles, which constitute a significant portion of the scholarly works being digitized in projects such as the HathiTrust. Project partners include the libraries of Baylor University, Columbia University, Dartmouth College, Duke University, Indiana University, Johns Hopkins University, Northwestern University, Penn State University, Princeton University, the University of California at Irvine, the University of California at Los Angeles, the University of California at San Francisco, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Maryland, and the University of Minnesota.


University of Michigan School of Information - Ann Arbor, MI
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $49,957; Matching Amount: $21,890

Contact: Ms. Tiffany Veinot
Assistant Professor

Health information is a critical resource for individuals and communities, but not all groups have equal access to this information. This collaborative planning project will help shape an anticipated future large-scale research project focusing on enhancement of health information infrastructures for marginalized urban communities. The planning project and the subsequent study will focus on conditions that are disproportionately prevalent in Inkster, Flint, and northwest Detroit, including diabetes, chronic kidney disease, and hypertension, as well as information related to the prevention of these conditions. The University of Michigan, the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan, Flint Public Library, Leanna Hicks Public Library of Inkster, and the Watsonia Park Block Association of Inkster will participate in the project and explore the effectiveness of the collaboration between a public library and relevant community partners.



Walker Art Center - Minneapolis, MN
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $200,000; Matching Amount: $162,550

Contact: Mr. Scott Stulen
Education Curator
612-375-7616 ext. 6;

The Walker Art Center will extensively rebuild, its arts engagement site, in response to feedback from both users and the field. Using open-source applications at every layer, it will reshape the site as an aggregator incorporating an advanced search engine, social tagging, and other user-tested features to support a Web 2.0 environment. Once the redesign is complete, the Walker will share the installation profile and source code and create a supporting toolkit to assist museums, libraries, and other organizations in freely replicating the site and program. Living within the open-source community, the applications institutions develop as they adapt and tailor the site will sustain its user-generated evolution and help the field address the changing and converging roles of institutions as catalysts, collectors, curators, marketplaces, and commons within the new realities of the twenty-first century.


University of Minnesota Libraries - Minneapolis, MN
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $99,500; Matching Amount: $35,787

Contact: Dr. Cecily Marcus
Curator, Performing Arts Archives

Collecting, preserving, and maintaining the archives of a performing arts organization is a complex process that presents significant challenges both for the archivist and for the organization itself. The complexity of the challenge often discourages theaters from addressing the problem fully. Yet, it is critical to preserve the cultural legacy of America’s theaters. The University of Minnesota Libraries and its partner, the Penumbra Theatre, will conduct a one-year collaborative planning project to assess interest in and barriers to archival preservation of a theater’s full range of activities. The project will convene a national forum of artistic directors, board chairs, and administrative or marketing staff from regional and local theaters of varying sizes to identify factors that would assist theaters in archival preparation and planning.


Minnesota Historical Society - St. Paul, MN
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $449,036; Matching Amount: $450,169

Contact: Ms. Wendy Jones


The Minnesota Historical Society, in partnership with four Minnesota schools, will create a new model for school field trips using mobile and Web technologies to capitalize on the natural behaviors and learning styles of twenty-first century learners and promoting the development of twenty-first century skills. "History in Our Hands: the Field Trip for the 21st Century Learner," targeted at students in grades four through eight, will demonstrate how museums can use technology with large numbers of "digitally native" students to create self-directed, personalized, responsive field trip experiences that deepen student engagement with museum content and contribute directly to the development of twenty-first century skills.


New Jersey

Rutgers University School of Communication and Information - New Brunswick, NJ
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $250,000; Matching Amount: $832,432

Contact: Dr. Marie Radford
Associate Professor
732-932-7500 ext. 8233;

Over the past decade, many libraries successfully introduced live chat and instant messaging reference services to supplement traditional face-to-face services. These services are popular with the public, but are hard to maintain in today’s environment of reduced funding. The School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University will work with OCLC Online Computer Library Center to investigate new models that permit more collaborative and sustainable delivery of virtual reference services, including models that rely upon more extensive collaboration among librarians and subject experts. The research will generate findings and recommendations to help members of the library community better understand their options as they implement the next generation of virtual reference services.


New York

Queensborough Community College - Bayside, NY
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $495,000; Matching Amount: $553,863

Contact: Patricia Lannes
Co-Director of Education

Queensborough Community College, in collaboration with the Rubin Museum of Art, the Katonah Museum of Art, El Museo del Barrio, and the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, as well as Visual Thinking Strategies and the Literacy Assistance Center, will build and support museum–community college partnerships that dramatically improve both institutions’ ability to engage and serve adult English language learners and their families. Through the collaborative implementation of "CALTA21," these partnerships will open pathways for some of the country’s newest residents to language skills, cultural capital, higher education, and workforce development, while simultaneously helping each institution expand its reach and maintain its relevance in increasingly diverse communities. This project will demonstrate, refine, evaluate, and disseminate the model program across the greater New York City metropolitan area and nationwide.


Heart of Brooklyn Cultural Institutions - Brooklyn, NY
Grant Category: Library-Museum Collaboration
Award Amount: $500,000; Matching Amount: $501,371

Contact: Ms. Ellen Salpeter

The Heart of Brooklyn (Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn Children’s Museum, Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Public Library, Prospect Park, and Prospect Park Zoo), along with the Center for the Study of Brooklyn, the Institute for Learning Innovation, John Shibley Consulting, and WolfBrown, are developing a model to help strengthen the collective impact of cultural institutions in meeting significant community needs. This project will create tools that enable other cultural alliances to facilitate collaborative action that will benefit their communities. An assessment of each partner’s nonfinancial assets and impact will be conducted, providing a better understanding of the value that each organization provides. This project will also utilize a cross-institutional capacity-building curriculum, a new approach to community listening and to programmatic responsiveness. The Heart of Brooklyn and its community partners will develop new "collaborative muscle," strengthening cultural partnerships and tying them more strongly to the communities they serve.


Southeastern New York Library Resources Council - Highland, NY
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $429,392; Matching Amount: $430,082

Contact: Ms. Eileen McAdam

Libraries, museums, and archives across the country often own recorded oral histories, but the general public is often unaware that these hidden treasures exist and are available for use. To demonstrate a new model for generating public interest and use of oral history collections, the Southeastern New York Library Resources Council will lead a unique partnership of libraries, museums, community organizations, audio producers, broadcasters, and oral history digitization and content management consultants. Together, the partners will digitize oral histories selected from repositories in the region and present the content in a manner suitable for the preferences of twenty-first century users. Project activities will include producing a series of radio broadcasts from excerpts, creating linked and dynamic websites that showcase the collections, and creating innovative mobile applications. These activities, along with training programs, will give libraries and museums the capacity to present collections in new and engaging ways.


Cornell University - Ithaca, NY
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $249,495; Matching Amount: $105,080

Contact: Ms. Mary Ochs
Librarian I

To help academic libraries better serve scholars who are producing digital research data, the libraries of Cornell University and Washington University in St. Louis will conduct user needs analysis for selected scholars at both universities who wish to create and share research datasets with other scholars. Findings from this needs analysis will be documented using a standardized Data Curation Profile template, and will be used to inform development of a prototype open-source software tool for libraries to use as the basis for providing new types of data services for researchers.


Art Education for the Blind - New York, NY
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $190,085; Matching Amount: $510,465

Contact: Dr. Nina Levent
Associate Director

Art Education for the Blind, in partnership with seven large metropolitan museums and five small museums, will develop multimodal interpretive programs, training, and audience development materials for visitors who are blind or visually impaired. The resources to be developed and tested through this project will include an initial accessibility survey; a focus group guide regarding audience needs; training scripts, guidelines, and examples on how to use touch, verbal/audio description, drama, movement, sound, and tactile diagrams; and an audience outreach tool.


Whitney Museum of American Art - New York, NY
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $200,000; Matching Amount: $120,197

Contact: Danielle Linzer
Youth Programs Coordinator

The Whitney Museum of American Art, in partnership with the Walker Art Center, the Contemporary Art Museum Houston, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, will conduct a multiyear research project to investigate the long-term impact of their teen programs on participants. Although program staff have witnessed the short-term benefits that teens experience during their tenure in each program, these institutions, and other art museums across the country, have yet to investigate the long-term impact on the teens’ personal, professional, and academic lives. This study will help practitioners understand the long-term effects of arts programming for teens, to employ proven successful formats for high-impact programming, and to effectively engage diverse young audiences.


Children's Museum of Manhattan - New York, NY
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $564,699; Matching Amount: $916,282

Contact: Ms. Karen Snider

212-721-1223 ext. 231;

The Children’s Museum of Manhattan will collaborate with the New York City Housing Authority to create a new community engagement model that unites and embeds the museum experiences of interactive exhibits and educational programs within public housing developments in East Harlem, New York. In addition to interactive exhibits focusing on early literacy and health, the museum and housing authority will develop programs for parent/child engagement, professional development for parents and caregivers, workforce programs for public housing and community residents, and access to other community resources for older children and families.


Syracuse University's School of Information Studies - Syracuse, NY
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $190,687; Matching Amount: $66,765

Contact: Dr. Marilyn Arnone
Associate Research Professor

The connections between free voluntary reading (FVR) in public library summer reading programs for youth and the development of information literacy skills have never been studied in any large-scale way. Syracuse University’s Graduate School of Library and Information Science and its Center for Digital Literacy will conduct a study to evaluate this relationship and the importance of FVR programs in public libraries. The research project will also study the intrinsic motivation to read (value of curiosity resolution, freedom/choice, etc.) among middle school students and its benefits for improving youth literacy. Academic researchers, public librarians, school librarians, and other members of the profession will have new knowledge available to them about critical motivational issues that can help improve both research and practice.


Westchester Library System - Tarrytown, NY
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $450,000; Matching Amount: $456,311

Contact: Ms. Francine Feuerman
Chief Financial Officer

The Westchester Library System, in partnership with Lifetime Arts, Inc., and the American Library Association’s Public Programs Office, will demonstrate a new and robust model for public libraries to deliver and sustain meaningful instructional arts programs for an aging population. The field of creative aging, which focuses on the beneficial and powerful role of the arts in enhancing the quality of life for older adults, is increasingly recognized as an important contributor to positive aging. Partnering library systems are the Brooklyn Public Library, Clinton Essex Franklin Library System, New York Public Library, and Westchester Library System. By demonstrating approaches for implementing creative aging programs in urban, suburban, and rural library systems, this project will be an example for similar capacity-building initiatives in libraries across the United States.


North Carolina

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Library and Information Science -
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $99,074; Matching Amount: $27,490

Contact: Dr. Sandra Hughes-Hassell
Associate Professor

The School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the School of Library and Information Science at North Carolina Central University will host a summit titled Building a Bridge to Literacy for African-American Male Youth: A Call to Action for the Library Community. The summit will unite national stakeholders, including members of the library and education community, researchers, educational policy makers, national organizations focused on the needs of African-American youth, publishers, and young black males, to focus on the role of school and public libraries in closing the literacy achievement gap of African-American male youth. A white paper will be prepared, and a website containing information produced during the summit will be made available. To encourage expanded dialogue, a blog feature will allow visitors to join the conversation, and a national webinar led by the project team will be held during the project period.



Kent State University's School of Library and Information Science - Kent, OH
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $219,386; Matching Amount: $71,170

Contact: Dr. Marcia Zeng

Information creators and providers can encourage greater discovery and use of digital content by adopting standards and practices that support greater interoperability of the descriptive and administrative information surrounding online resources. This idea is gaining momentum internationally and is commonly referred to as the Linked Open Data movement. Many libraries and museums manage and provide access to large amounts of digital cultural and scientific information, but need a roadmap to assist them in better integrating multiple resources such as existing digital collections, directories, online catalog data, and other information into a more cohesive Linked Open Data universe. The Kent State University School of Library and Information Science will explore effective strategies and develop prototype tools to support libraries and museums in these efforts.



University of Oregon Libraries - Eugene, OR
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $249,904; Matching Amount: $120,602

Contact: Ms. Jodi Allison-Bunnell
Program Manager, Northwest Digital Archives

Archives and special collections have developed shared standards for describing their materials. However, these descriptions or "finding aids" are often difficult to combine in a shared searchable system because of the complex descriptions of groupings and items in each archive’s various collections. Building upon previous work in other institutions and consortia, the University of Oregon Libraries will build, evaluate, and demonstrate a new tool for searching across large numbers of collection descriptions from 36 different archives, and will link to other regional and national efforts. Partner institutions in this effort are the Orbis Cascade Alliance, Lewis & Clark College, Oregon State University, Pacific University, Seattle Municipal Archives, Western Washington University, Washington State University, and the University of Montana.


Portland State University - Portland, OR
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $999,493; Matching Amount: $147,859

Contact: Professor Stephen Reder
Professor, Applied Linguistics

Portland State University, in collaboration with its partners, will conduct extensive mining and analysis of data for more than 23,000 adult users of the IMLS-funded Learner Web, a learning support system for adults. Learner Web helps adults accomplish specific personal goals such as earning a General Equivalency Diploma, improving English language abilities, or increasing digital literacy skills. This research will provide unique and important information about the learning processes of various hard-to-serve populations and how libraries can better tailor tutoring opportunities to meet diverse needs. Project partners include the state libraries of California, Louisiana, Minnesota, New York, and Texas; the City of Richmond Public Library, Lindy Boggs National Center for Community Literacy at Loyola University New Orleans, Minnesota Literacy Council, Regional Adult Education Network at Cayuga Community College, Literacy Coalition of Central Texas, and South Texas College. This research seeks to produce information that will help libraries tailor learning and literary services more effectively to prepare more individuals to cross the digital divide, use broadband services, and participate in an increasingly digital world.



Health Sciences Libraries Consortium - Philadelphia, PA
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $434,231; Matching Amount: $0

Contact: Ms. Debra Kachel

The Health Sciences Libraries Consortium will partner with the Pennsylvania School Librarians Association and the Education Law Center of Pennsylvania to identify and measure current gaps in Pennsylvania school libraries that may deter school systems statewide from effectively teaching needed twenty-first century skills to students. This one-year project will also provide data and projections on the investments that would be needed to close identified gaps and achieve higher levels of student achievement.


Drexel University's College of Information Science and Technology - Philadelphia, PA
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $378,014; Matching Amount: $233,600

Contact: Dr. Denise Agosto
Associate Professor

As online social networking sites increase in popularity, many libraries are establishing identities in these spaces, and looking for productive ways to leverage new connections with users. Teenagers are a target audience of particular interest to libraries, because of their strong affinity for online social networking. Before libraries can effectively provide new services in these environments, however, they need to better understand how teens already are using online social networks to find information. The Drexel University College of Information Science & Technology will investigate how teenagers use social Web technologies to find information, and identify key issues and preferences libraries should consider as they try to construct new reference and information services for teens online. This research will provide valuable data for use by school libraries and public libraries across the country.


Drexel University's College of Information Science and Technology - Philadelphia, PA
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $413,378; Matching Amount: $318,949

Contact: Dr. Xia Lin
Associate Professor

This project will investigate and evaluate ways of improving library and museum searching and social tagging by presenting users with thesauri, taxonomies, and other structured vocabularies as a way to discover relevant content. Investigators will create and test a prototype tool that serves as a mediator between the user and search interfaces, allowing users to search multiple digital collections simultaneously. The prototype will also allow users to create annotations that may be useful to others. Drexel University’s College of Information Science and Technology will lead the study, in cooperation with partners at the University at Buffalo, Getty Research Institute, ARTstor, and the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The results will ultimately be useful to a wide range of museum and library users and can be directly applied by library and museum service providers and search engine designers.


Rhode Island

Brown University Library - Providence, RI
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $249,509; Matching Amount: $117,205

Contact: Dr. Julia Flanders
Director, Women Writers Project

The libraries of Brown University and Wheaton College will collaborate to offer a new shared repository and a suite of publishing and preservation services for humanities scholars who wish to create electronic texts using the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) guidelines. TEI encoding offers both scholars and readers significantly wider ranges of options for annotating, searching, linking, and using digital texts encoded by the scholars. However, creating, preserving, and providing access to a TEI-encoded text can be very costly and time-consuming. The new centralized TEI Archiving, Publication and Access Service (TAPAS) responds to an urgent need, particularly at small liberal arts colleges, for solutions that do not require extensive technical resources or large-scale funding. A community-driven and contributory project, TAPAS will enable scholars to share data presentation tools within TAPAS and with the public. The resulting archive will permit broad access and support third-party interface development.



Memphis Zoo - Memphis, TN
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $300,000; Matching Amount: $163,613

Contact: Dr. Andrew Kouba
Director of Conservation Research

The Memphis Zoological Society, in partnership with Mississippi State University, the Fort Worth Zoo, and other collaborators, will develop innovative assisted reproductive technologies for salamanders that will aid in their conservation and management. It is estimated that nearly one-third of known amphibian species are threatened with extinction worldwide, and zoos and government organizations are rapidly establishing captive colonies as a response to this amphibian crisis. However, many of these species are failing to reproduce in captivity and are in imminent danger of extinction. This project will address the challenge of captive reproduction and lead to more secure colonies of amphibians, often viewed as indicator species for environmental health because of their dependence on a mix of aquatic and terrestrial habitats.



University of North Texas Libraries - Denton, TX
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $268,458; Matching Amount: $271,911

Contact: Martin Halbert
Dean of Libraries and Associate Professor

Colleges and universities are steadily transitioning from traditional paper and microfilm formats for graduate theses and dissertations. While this move from print-based to electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) greatly enhances the accessibility and sharing of graduate student research, it also presents significant challenges for the academic libraries trying to preserve digital content. To promote best practices and to increase the capacity of academic libraries to reliably preserve ETDs, the University of North Texas Libraries, together with the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations, the Educopia Institute/MetaArchive Cooperative, and the libraries of Virginia Tech, Rice University, Boston College, Indiana State University, Pennsylvania State University, and the University of Arizona will develop and share a toolkit of guidelines, educational materials, and a set of software tools for life-cycle data management and preservation of ETDs.



University of Utah Library - Salt Lake City, UT
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $49,943; Matching Amount: $13,008

Contact: Dr. Gregory Thompson
Associate Director for Special Collections

The University of Utah Library and its partners, Orbis Cascade Alliance, the University of New Mexico, and the Utah Academic Library Consortium, will explore ways to improve the usability of software and systems designed to search groups of encoded descriptions of archival collections. Project partners also will examine potential ways to realize greater cost efficiencies through shared technical and administrative infrastructure among archives and more efficient workflows for staff.


University of Utah Library - Salt Lake City, UT
Grant Category: Demonstration
Award Amount: $439,142; Matching Amount: $439,678

Contact: Mr. Kenning Arlitsch
Associate Director for IT Services

Libraries and archives have built digital repositories and have amassed sizable digital collections over the past two decades. While these digital collections have high potential value for both researchers and the general public, they are not easily discoverable through major Web search engines. This isolation has created access barriers to a very rich set of resources. Working with the Online Computer Library Center, Inc., the Digital Library Federation, and the Mountain West Digital Library, the University of Utah Libraries will test and evaluate a strategy for making library digital collections significantly more visible in common Web search engines. The partners will use the findings of this work to publish a toolkit that will help libraries and archives make their digital library content more accessible and useful for common Web users.



University of Virginia - Charlottesville, VA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $66,187; Matching Amount: $32,203

Contact: Mr. Michael Greco
Asst Dir for Information Services

The Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia will conduct initial planning and early-stage development of Connecting Presidential Collections, a digital resource that will provide open access to archival collections on, about, or related to all the presidents of the United States. Surveys conducted by the Miller Center confirm what most scholars have long suspected: The vast majority of important presidential collections remain untapped, unused, and hidden. The Miller Center will convene a Steering Committee of experts in digital scholarship—professional historians, archivists, and librarians who have demonstrated professional expertise—for a two-day summit meeting in fall 2011. Participants from numerous archives holding presidential materials will consider and establish project strategies and objectives, compatible content management standards, digital tools and best practices, and other requirements of a future portal to search across multiple libraries and archives.


Virginia Library Association - Virginia Beach, VA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $50,000; Matching Amount: $32,230

Contact: Lisa Varga


The Virginia Library Association, in conjunction with Liberty’s Promise, a nonprofit organization that helps low-income immigrant youth learn about and feel at home in America, will work to produce a strategy for engaging immigrant youth in rural communities through exposure to libraries and library careers. This project will target five rural communities with growing legal immigrant populations in states with persistent rural poverty. This strategy will encourage an increased use of the local library in general (and specifically by minority and legal immigrant populations) and a strengthening of the public library’s place as a focal point for community participation and acculturation.



Washington State University - Pullman, WA
Grant Category: Advancing Digital
Award Amount: $484,772; Matching Amount: $497,936

Contact: Dr. Kimberly Christen
Assistant Professor

Open-source and commercial tools for building and operating digital libraries work well for a wide range of organizations but are less well suited to the needs of tribal libraries, archives, and museums, owing to cultural protocols for sharing information, diverse intellectual property systems among tribes, and the fractured or distributed nature of collections about indigenous groups. To address these needs, researchers at Washington State University will partner with Smallbean, Inc.; the University of California-Berkeley; the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums; CivicActions, Inc.; the National Anthropological Archives; and the National Museum of the American Indian to deploy, evaluate, and refine a software tool that accommodates tribal organizations’ needs. The tool, named Mukurtu, will be made freely available as open-source software, complete with full documentation and a toolkit for tribal organizations wishing to construct and operate digital libraries.


University of Washington - Seattle, WA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $50,000; Matching Amount: $0

Contact: Dr. Alison Head
Research Scientist

The University of Washington’s Project Information Literacy is conducting a planning project to help shape a future investigation into the ways college graduates use information literacy training they received in college during their first year after graduation as they seek employment, join the workplace, and continue in their daily lives. Although information literacy standards underscore the importance of training lifelong learners, few studies have systematically investigated the outcomes of information literacy instruction and coaching. The planning project will consist primarily of testing and evaluating the survey instrument that is intended for use in the later study.


University of Washington - Seattle, WA
Grant Category: Planning Grants
Award Amount: $49,623; Matching Amount: $21,568

Contact: Dr. Michael Crandall
Senior Lecturer

The University of Washington, Kent State University, University of North Carolina, JES & Company, and Talis Inc., will plan for the development of an integrated online learning platform to teach library and museum staff the principles and process of creating metadata for the modern Web environment, with particular focus on designing for an Open Linked Data environment. Metadata is used to describe information, and Open Linked Data is quickly growing as a way to publish data on the Web and facilitate the integration of information across diverse sources. The project partners will convene a workshop of educators and technology experts to assess requirements for a software platform in support of teaching the design of metadata for the modern Web environment. The planning project will provide a set of requirements for a technical (software) platform, based on an analysis of teaching needs and an inventory of existing and emerging open-source tools available for integration into such a platform.


University of Washington Information School - Seattle, WA
Grant Category: Research
Award Amount: $635,000; Matching Amount: $580,213

Contact: Dr. Eliza Dresang
Professor for Children and Youth Services

Early literacy programs are very common in public libraries across the nation, but libraries struggle to find accurate and meaningful ways to measure the impact these programs have on children. Building on a 2009 research planning grant from IMLS, researchers in the University of Washington Information School and partners, including the Early Learning Public Library Partnership, the Foundation for Early Learning, and the Washington State Library, will investigate and test new ways to measure the effectiveness of early literacy programs in public libraries. The research will focus on measuring early literacy outcomes for children from birth to entering kindergarten, and will leverage innovative public library and school partnerships. The investigation will be conducted in Washington, but will be structured so that the results, tools, and methodology are available to libraries across the country.