Thank you Altmetric

logo for Altmetric, rainbow coloured wheel

Only two days until the third annual SLIP Ireland conference! We would like to thank our new bronze sponsor, Altmetric. It’s down to organisations like this supporting us that we are able to provide a platform for students. Look out for some Altmetric swag on Saturday!

A special thank you to Josh Clarke and Jane Burns.

You can find out more about Altmetric here and follow @Altmetric on Twitter.



Thank you DBS

Dublin business school logo, tagline reads: excellent through learning.

The third SLIP Ireland  annual student conference is getting closer – only three days to go! We would like to thank our bronze sponsor, the Dublin Business School Library. It’s thanks to the kind generosity of DBS library that we are able to keep the SLIP Ireland conference going and free for attendees.

A very special thank you to Marie O’Neill.

You can keep up to date with what’s going on in DBS Library here, follow the Library @DBSLibraryTwits and follow the @DBSLibraryMSc while you’re at it.


Thank you ICS

Logo with gree, dark blue and light blue crest with gold hard and three Dublin castles logo for UCD Dublin. Tesxt reads: School of Information & Communication Studies.

The third SLIP Ireland  annual student conference is now only four days away and we would like to thank our silver sponsor, the School of Information and Communication Studies, UCD. Both Clare and Helena are graduates of ICS (then known as SILS) and have had such wonderful support from all there ever since.

A special thank you to Prof. Kalpana Shankar, Claire Nolan & Lisa Gaffney.

You can visit the school website here and follow them on Twitter @UCD_iSchool.


Thank you Library Association of Ireland


The third SLIP Ireland  annual student conference is just five days away and we would like to thank our silver sponsor, the Library Association of Ireland. The LAI have been so supportive of SLIP Ireland and we really appreciate all the help they have given us. Without this assistance the SLIP Ireland conference would simply not be possible.

A special thank you to Lorna Dodd.

Visit the LAI website here and follow them on Twitter @LAIonline.

SLIP 2018 Conference Schedule

With only two weeks to go make sure you have registered to get your free ticket to the SLIP Ireland Conference 2018. The schedule and the abstracts are now available  #SLIP2018.


10:20 – 10:45         Registration and Networking

10:45 – 10:50         Opening Remarks

10:50 – 11:10         Keynote – Jane Burns

11:10 – 11:20         Jesse Waters   “To be or not to be an information professional? Be”

11:20 – 11:25         Gillian McCarthy   “To be an information professional”

11:25 – 11:35         Alice Morrissey   “Practising While Learning: My Perspective ”

11:35 – 11:45    Anita Cooper   “Translation: learning the language to communicate relevant skills”

11:45 – 11:50                                                               Questions

11:50 – 12:00                                                       COMFORT BREAK   

12:00 – 1:00         

Academic Panel   “Libraries and Archives, what is the difference?”

Kalpana Shankar – UCD, Head of the School of Information & Communication Studies (ICS).

Marie O’Neill – DBS, Head of Library Services.

Jessica Bates – UU, Course Director of Library & Information Management MSc.

Jacinta Prunty – MU, Head of History.

Elizabeth Mullins –  UCD, Director of the MA in Archives and Records Management programme.

1:00 – 2:00                                    LUNCH  (tea/coffee and sandwiches will be provided)

2:00 – 2:10      Sharon Healy   “From the Archive to the Web: Dilemmas with Digital   Scholarly Editions”

2:10 – 2:20            Michael Kurzmeier   “Smart tools, smart users?”

2:20 – 2:30        Lucy McKenna   “MLIS to PhD – Making the move from Information Studies to Computer Science”

2:30 – 2:35                                                                   Questions

2:35 – 2:45           Tamsin Reilly   “Balancing studies with working in an academic library”

2:45 – 2:55         Colleen Ballard   “It’s Not About the Book: Expectations and Realisations”

2:55 – 3:05          Emma Doran   “Finding Your Feet In The Professional World: First Steps Away From The MLIS”

3:05 – 3:10                                                                   Questions

3:10 – 3:20                                                           COMFORT BREAK

3:20 – 4:20        

Practitioners Panel   “What kind of information professional will you be?”

Lorna Dodd – Library Association of Ireland (LAI)

Jayne Finlay – CILIP Ireland

Siobhan McGuinness – SLA Europe

Sarah Foley – British and Irish Association of Law Librarians (BIALL)

Pearl Quinn – Archives Records Association, Ireland (ARA,I)

TBC – Information and Records Management Society (IRMS)

4:20 – 4:30            Closing Remarks


Join conference participants at a nearby venue for more networking


Jesse Waters   “To be or not to be an information professional? Be”

To be or not to be an information professional, that is the question. But not a question that I have to ponder for very long. I have been working in academic libraries, be it voluntarily, part-time or full-time, since 2013. While it has been difficult to secure full-time employment in the profession since graduating from UCD in 2015, I find librarianship to be very rewarding. Despite external perceptions, it can be a very social and enjoyable line of work that offers a variety of interesting challenges and opportunities. Challenging in that you encounter a diverse range of people, need to learn new skills consistently, and rarely get the same query twice. But opportunistic also for the same reason that you are constantly learning new skills, whether by working with others or getting involved in projects. In this presentation I will talk about what made me want to join the profession, and what makes me want to make a career as an information professional. I will also touch on opportunities and challenges that have arose for me to date.

Jesse Waters is a library assistant at Trinity College Dublin, a 2015 graduate of the MLIS from UCD, and has five years experience working in academic libraries. He has worked in six libraries across five institutions to date including Trinity College Dublin, the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland, University College Dublin, the University of Limerick, and the Limerick School of Art and Design. His professional interests include CPD, user experience, information literacy, and student engagement. He tweets @jessewaters061

Gillian McCarthy   “To be an information professional”

The promotion of library and information sciences is a key issue in whether a person decides “To be or not to be an information professional”. I noticed that a large majority of my peers (myself included) did not become aware of the possibility of being information professionals until during or after our undergraduate degrees, if not much later in life. It was not mentioned during career guidance classes or recruitment drives at either second or third level education.
Despite the fact that library science and archival graduates possess the top skills employers report seeking, such as communication skills, I.T skills and problem-solving abilities, it is not a career path that is widely marketed to prospective students.
Therefore, I want to present a recruitment poster which promotes and identifies the skills required to be an information professional, along with the potential careers that can be obtained with a library qualification in both the public and private sector.
To take inspiration from the conference’s Hamlet theme, the poster will be titled “To Be an information professional” with a (friendly, non-gendered) skull sitting atop a stack of books which state job titles along their spines. Beside the skull will be a checklist of abilities required for these positions. I hope the poster will provide an alternate view to the stereotype of the shushing librarian while also raising the profile of our capabilities to other recruiters at job fairs.

Gillian McCarthy is currently studying for her MLIS qualification in UCD having previously graduated from UCC with a BA in English and History. She is particularly interested in how public and academic libraries engage with their communities through outreach services.

Alice Morrissey   “Practising While Learning: My Perspective ”

This presentation will examine my perspective of studying for the MLIS while beginning work in a library without any previous library experience.
Entering the field without knowing what to expect and trying to fill the gap in your knowledge can be daunting. With this presentation, I hope to highlight how this gap can be bridged by learning on the job concurrently with studying. There are many advantages to having this experience, both from the student perspective and from a staff perspective, including but not limited to knowledge of library resources, time management, and real-world applications of theory. I will consider what I have learned while training on the job, and how that compares to what I am being taught in the MLIS.

Alice Morrissey is a current full-time MLIS student in UCD. Alongside her studies she works part-time at the service desk in the James Joyce Library. She has a B.A. in History from Trinity College Dublin. Her research interests relate to the changing nature of reference services provided by academic libraries. Twitter: @AliceMorrissey9

Anita Cooper   “Translation: learning the language to communicate relevant skills”

This presentation will demonstrate how I was able to translate and communicate my experiences and skills from a career in investment accounting/reporting into a new role as an information professional. There are similar skills between the two fields which needed reflection and translation in order to effectively relate their relevance. Also, I will show a way to approach a job spec, evaluate required skills, and translate previous experience from a different sector (eg. financial, retail) to a library/information role.

Anita Cooper (@anitaocooper) graduated from Dublin Business School in 2016 with the MSc in Information and Library Management. She is currently working in her first professional post as an Assistant Librarian, Early Printed Books and Special Collections/Bibliographic Data Management, Trinity College Dublin cataloguing 19th century children’s books. Before qualifying as an information professional, Anita had a long career in the investment services sector in Ireland and Canada.

Sharon Healy   “From the Archive to the Web: Dilemmas with Digital Scholarly Editions”

Two longstanding activities associated with humanities computing/digital humanities (DH) are digital archiving and digital scholarly editing. Both activities can be traced to the pre-Web era and gained prominence from the mid-1990s due to advances in digitisation technologies, combined with the development of the Web in the public domain. While they have characteristics in common such as the digitisation of texts/documents and the provision of access to the digital surrogates in an online environment, it is worth noting that they are not the same thing.

Sahle defines scholarly editions as the “critical representation of historic documents” (23), with a digital scholarly edition (DSE) being a scholarly edition that is “guided by a digital paradigm in [its] theory, method and practice” (28). Characteristics of a DSE include the digitisation, transcription, and encoding of texts/documents for presentation in the HTML environment, with added contextualisation through hyperlink annotations and/or multimedia. While the tasks involved in producing a DSE seem relatively straightforward, nonetheless, DSE projects often run the risk of not being completed on time or within budget. For instance, problems arise from underestimating the length of time it will take to complete a task, a failure (at the start) to configure the parameters and constraints of the proposed web platform to be used, and a major dilemma is Scope Creep. Thus, the aim of this presentation is to provide some useful tips for early career information professionals on how to avoid some of the pitfalls in producing a quality DSE within time-frame and budget.

Sahle, Patrick. “What is a Scholarly Digital Edition?” Digital Scholarly Editing: Theories and Practices, edited by Matthew James Driscoll and Elena Pierazzo. Open Book Publishers, 2016, pp. 19- 43. Open Access

Sharon Healy is a PhD candidate in Digital Humanities at Maynooth University and is a recipient of the John and Pat Hume Doctoral Scholarship. Her research focuses on bridging the gap between the creation of web archives and the use of web archived materials for current and future research in the humanities and social sciences.

Michael Kurzmeier   “Smart tools, smart users?”

There is a plethora of digital tools available for all kinds of needs – and of course they all claim to be the best there is. But when and how can you use them to actually get added value to your work? Rather than showing you my favorite apps, my presentation is going to show how to identify criteria that tell enabling digital tools from restricting ones. As diverse as our research is, we share common needs when it comes to referencing, writing and generally not loosing our work. Also when teaching, we need to find a way to communicate digital literacy beyond buzzwords and hype. My presentation is going to be based on my own experiences from B.A. to PhD level and illustrate a set of criteria for productive use of digital tools in research. It keeps a focus on information management
and emphasizes the importance of open interfaces and user agency.

Michael Kurzmeier is a PhD candidate in Digital Humanities supervised by Susan Schreibman. His thesis investigates questions of preservation and presentation of digital cultural heritage. The age of digital communication as also the age of massive data collection driven by very different intentions. As those archives serve as memory agents for current and future ways to remember and portrait the past, it is necessary to understand the challenges and opportunities that an increasing digitization of memory brings. Michael received his BA European Literature from Marburg and MA American Studies from Tübingen University. He has worked for DARIAH and has a strong interest in open source hard- and software as well as previous experience as an IT Manager. @mkrzmr

Lucy McKenna   “MLIS to PhD – Making the move from Information Studies to Computer Science”

Is a PhD for me? Is there a role for Information Professionals in Computer Science? Why should libraries be interested in the Semantic Web? This presentation will focus on answering these three questions based on the speaker’s personal experience of becoming a PhD student.

Firstly, I will discuss the experience of becoming a PhD student. This will include advice on deciding whether a PhD is for you, and a discussion of my experiences so far in my research journey.

Secondly, I will present on the process of transitioning from Information Studies to Computer Science. This will include a discussion of the challenges I faced, how I overcame these challenges, and why I believe Information Professionals have a lot to contribute to the Computer Science domain.

Finally, I will offer a little snapshot of my research which focuses on designing user interfaces for Information Professionals with the aim of increasing their engagement with the Semantic Web and Linked Data.

Lucy McKenna (@LucyMaryMcKenna) graduated from UCD with an MLIS in 2015. In 2016 she began a PhD in Computer Science with the ADAPT Centre in Trinity College Dublin. The focus of her research is on engaging Information Professionals with Linked Data.

Tamsin Reilly   “Balancing studies with working in an academic library”

In this presentation I draw on my own experience as a distance learner with the University of Ulster and as a member of staff at University of Bath Library to reflect on the advantages and difficulties of combining work and study. I explore how studying for a postgraduate qualification in Library and Information Management and working in an academic library have, in my case, been mutually beneficial. Both my work experience thus far, and also the culture of support and encouragement for staff development in my current workplace, have had a positive impact on my studies, while my course of study at UU and my fellow students have stimulated my enthusiasm, contributing to the progression of my career. I look at how studying alongside a cohort working in a variety of libraries has ensured that I have good knowledge and understanding of the wider library landscape and am not limited to the sector in which I work, thereby helping to further my development in the library profession. I also examine some of the difficulties inherent in undertaking a qualification that combines both study and work; not least in terms of striking the right life-work balance.

Tamsin Reilly has worked as a Library Assistant in Stranmillis University College and Queen’s University Belfast, as a Senior Library Assistant in University of Bath, and she is currently an Information Librarian at the University of Bath and is studying for a qualification in Library and Information Management with the University of Ulster where she is about to embark on her fourth module as a distance learner.

Colleen Ballard   “It’s Not About the Book: Expectations and Realisations”

Reflection is a key component of modules within MLIS. This presentation is a verbal reflection on what I imagined MLIS was, a realisation of the reality, and how I adapted to this. The role of information professional had escaped me as I contemplated studying MLIS, and the significance of this position, as is taught, as a primary role in librarianship was initially disappointing. I had envisioned a focus on books, forgetting that time and methods of study move on with society’s needs and uses. I reflect on my feelings and prospects, how I reassessed my perspective and enabled an element of acceptance for what I had not expected. Yet, I also found ways to incorporate subjects that interested me into my assignments, holding on to my passion for literature and ephemera. I acknowledge that there is room, potential and opportunity for persons whose preference is “not to be” an information professional as I currently interpret the role, in library services, but who wish to contemplate niche areas or roles that retain their specialised interests, whilst facilitating a useful contribution to the field and hopefully, personal fulfilment.

Graduating in 2017 in B.A. Joint Honours in English and New Media, and recipient of the award for First Place in Arts, Humanities and Social Science from the University of Limerick, Colleen Ballard is currently a student of MLIS at UCD. She enjoys the research and writing aspects of academic assignments. Her interests include books, ephemera and cultural heritage.

Emma Doran   “Finding Your Feet In The Professional World: First Steps Away From The MLIS”

Finding your feet in the professional world is no easy task, this is especially true for new & developing library and information professionals looking to branch out and establish themselves in careers after completing their studies. My presentation aims to explore and share some of the advice I received from successful Information Professionals currently working in the field, steps I took and valuable lessons I learned along the way as a new librarian hoping to establish myself and my career in the profession.

Emma Doran is a Special Collections & Archives Library Assistant at Maynooth University and a 2016 graduate of the MLIS at University College Dublin. She published her first poster and placed first in the 2017 LAI/CILIP Conference. Emma is also a committee member of the Information Professionals Network and the Chairperson of the LAI Career Development Group. Her twitter handle is @tumbling_tomes and she welcomes new connections on LInkedIn.

SLIP Conference 2018 Guidelines

SLIP 2018 Logo

On the 24th of February 2018 SLIP Ireland are delighted to be holding our Third Annual Conference. Submissions are now open for current students and graduates of the last three years from any library, archives, records management or digital humanities qualification.

This will be a full day event with 2 panel discussions, the first will focus on academic issues that face information professionals while the second is made up of a variety of practitioners discussing their pathway from study to practice.  

The theme of the conference is “To be or not to be an information professional, that is the question”. We are open to a broad interpretation of the theme and welcome presentations on topics including (but not limited to):

  • Comparing the theory and practice of your field whether it be librarianship, archives or digital humanities
  • Management
  • First professional jobs
  • Balancing education and work
  • Networking
  • Presenting
  • Communities of practice
  • Transferable skills
  • Working in non-traditional libraries
  • The job market/emigration


  • Should be no more than 10 minutes
  • May have a PowerPoint, Keynote, Google Slides, Prezi of PDF visual presentation format. If you would like to use another format please check with us by emailing
  • There is free WiFi at the venue but an offline backup of any digital material is advised.
  • Submission Deadline: 01/02/2018

Conference Details

Venue: Dublin City Library & Archive, 144 Pearse St., Dublin 2.
Date: 24/02/2018
Time: TBC


Sign up with the submission form here!

Join us for a live Twitter chat!

red, blue and white advertisement reads: #SLIPIRELAND Join us for a live twitter chat on thursday 25th january at 6pm. see for details. follow us on twitter @slipireland. connect on facebook @studentlibrariansireland

On Thursday 25th January at 6pm SLIP Ireland will be hosting a live Twitter chat inspired by an article in Liber QuarterlyThe e-Reader — an Educational or an Entertainment Tool? e-Readers in an Academic Setting by Peter Ahlroos and Jonna Hahto1.

To take part in the Twitter chat all you need to do is read the article, which is open access and available here, and think about the points raised in the article – then share your feedback using #SLIPIreland! For some guiding questions on reflecting on the article see below. @SLIPIreland will be moderating the chat and asking some questions raised by the article and the topic of e-readers in general and how the landscape has shifted in the years since the article was written.

Guiding Questions

  1. What is the focus of the article/chapter?
  2. What kinds of contributions do the readings make (theoretical, framework, insights, practical, etc.) to understanding your chosen topic?
  3. Is the evidence the author presents convincing to you? Why/why not?
  4. What is strong/weak about the article?
  5. What do you agree/disagree with?
  6. How would you change the research or what else do you wish the authors had considered?
  7. What connections can you make between these articles and others?
  8. Does it support, challenge, extend, or contradict other readings you’ve done?
  9. What connections can you make between the reading and your own experiences in previous study or in the workplace?
  10. What can you “take away” from the readings?
  11.  What questions or issues does the reading raise for you?


  1. Ahlroos, P. & Hahto, J., (2012). The e-Reader — an Educational or an Entertainment Tool? e-Readers in an Academic Setting. LIBER Quarterly. 21(2), pp.249–261. DOI:


10 Tools To Survive Your MLIS

logo of Doodle - blue text reads "doo

If you remember nothing else from this post remember Doodle. The number one thing I found most difficult during library school wasn’t the course-load, the growing mountain of assignments and reading or balancing college and a social life – it was trying to find a time to have group meetings. Seriously, when you’re taking five modules but are somehow doing six group projects it’s a nightmare trying to find a time that works for everyone, especially as we all have commitments outside of college and more and more students are in employment while studying. So, forget the unending messages in the group chat and just use a Doodle poll. It’s simple, just input your available times for a meeting and invite everyone to participate in the poll, then you can quickly see the time that suits you all best. Doodle will also sync to your calendar. There’s no need to go for the Premium account, the free version will cover everything you need.

logo of skype - white "S" in blue circle.

Remember, not all group meetings have to happen in person! Remote meetings are great if you have a long commute into college that you don’t necessarily want to have to do every day. If you’re camera-shy you can do voice-only calls and you can also share your screen over Skype, which is handy for group projects and presentations. Facebook messenger also has a group video chat option.

Google Docs

There are numerous benefits to Google Docs as an alternative to the more traditional Microsoft Office. Firstly, it’s free! Secondly, it’s really easy to collaborate on group reports with Google Docs as multiple users can simultaneously edit the same document. This ends up being so much easier than trying to combine four different Word documents.

Thirdly, as Google Docs is stored in the cloud if you lose your USB drive you won’t lose the paper you just spent 5 hours finishing. Side note: so many USB drives are lost in the library year and it’s really hard to get them back to their owners. Would you recognise your USB in a box of pretty identical looking USBs? Do you have 30 minutes to look through all of them? My advice is to both make a physical mark on the outside of your USB drive (permanent marker or nail polish should work for this) and create a simple “If found please return to” text document to keep on it with your contact details. Better still, stop relying on them fully and have at least one backup with a cloud based solution. Microsoft has cloud storage with 365 but you still have to pay for it. Evernote is popular for taking lecture notes and it has an option for sharing notes including a live chat function.

If you’re not into Google Docs but still don’t want to shell out for Microsoft then there are a number of great open source alternatives like Openoffice and Libreoffice that do everything you need them to.

Google Drive logo - a green line a yellow line and a blue line form a triangle.

When it comes to storing and sharing files I recommend using Google Drive or Dropbox (see USB horror story above for reasons why). Another alternative is pCloud, it works just the same as Dropbox but has the option to upgrade to pCloud Crypto for the extremely security conscious among you. pCloud are so confident in their security that they offered $100,000 to anyone who could hack their system and nobody has been able to (and at least 2800 people have tried).

Citation management

When it comes to essay and dissertation writing, using a citation manager can save a lot of time and headaches. Endnote, Mendeley and Zotero are popular choices. They each have their own strengths and weaknesses depending on your particular needs. Different universities and colleges usually recommend and support different software. If you’re unsure what to go for, try out Zotero – it’s free and open source.

Stop paying for photocopying

As long as you don’t mind reading from screens you won’t need to pay for photocopying anymore if you use apps such as Scannable (made by Evernote) or Adobe Scan. These apps allow you to take photos of documents, automatically rotates, crops and adjusts them and saves them as PDF or JPG.


If you’re looking for a free alternative to PowerPoint, look no further than Google Slides. Google Slides offers everything that PowerPoint does with the added benefit of cloud storage and simultaneous collaboration with other users (seeing a pattern emerge here?). There are loads of great resources out there with free Google Slides templates to play around with like Slides Carnival. Another alternative is Canva. Canva is great for designing posters, images and infographics and now they also offer some pretty great presentation templates. Presentations can be shown native on the Canva website or downloaded as a PDF.

Getting Organised

There are lots of great “To Do List” apps, I recommend which allows you to collaborate with others and share tasks.

If you’re prone to procrastination you might find this desktop Pomodoro timer helpful. The Pomodoro technique uses a timer to break work down into 25 minute intervals with 5 minutes break in between. There’s also a web based timer here for concentration on the fly.

If you need a more extreme method of preventing procrastination, when the siren song of Facebook is calling (or literally anything other than work is calling, let’s be honest) maybe you should go Cold Turkey and download a desktop distraction blocker.

So, there are 10 tools to help you survive the MLIS! Have you found any of these tools helpful? If you have any tips or tricks that help you leave them in the comments below or join in the conversation on Twitter and Facebook using #SLIPIreland

About the authorimage of Clare Murnane

Clare Murnane is one of the founders of SLIP Ireland. She graduated with an MLIS from UCD in 2015 and now works in UCD Library. If you would like to write for SLIP you can contact Clare on Twitter @SLIPIreland or by emailing

Connecting Libraries to the Semantic Web

After finishing my MLIS in 2015 I briefly worked as a research assistant in the area of Human Computer Interaction at the iSchool in UCD. This experience, in addition to my love of libraries, inspired me to pursue a PhD in Computer Science, with a focus on the use of Linked Data in the library domain, with the ADAPT Centre in TCD.

In this post I’m going to give a (very) brief introduction to the Semantic Web and Linked Data, and discuss how these technologies can be used for the benefit of libraries. I’m then going to discuss my research in the hopes that it may inspire some of you to participate in my research and also to collaborate with a computer scientist near you!

What is the Semantic Web and Linked Data?

The Web contains a vast amount of information presented in the form of webpages linked together via hyperlinks. In order to find specific resources on the web, search engines are used to rank webpages based on relevancy via keyword searches. While this is done to great effect, unlike humans, computers have very little understanding of the meaning of data on the web, nor do they understand the relationships (links) between them.

The Semantic Web (SW) is an extension of the current web in which information is given well defined meaning, e.g. person’s name, book title. Linked Data (LD) involves creating identifiers for web resources and then linking them together by meaningfully describing their relationships, e.g. author of, in a common machine-readable format. Therefore, the sentence ‘JK Rowling (name) wrote (author) Harry Potter (title)’ is not only meaningful to a human reader, but also to a machine. This data can then be linked to endless amounts of other related resources, e.g. publisher, year, illustrator, other works – thus creating a Web of Data!

In essence, the vision of the Semantic Web and Linked Data is to transform the web into one large interlinked and searchable database rather than a disparate collection of documents.

Why Should Information Professionals be Interested?

From the perspective of a library, participating in the SW could greatly enhance information discovery. By freeing metadata from library databases and sharing it on the SW, libraries could make their resources more visible on a global scale. Publishing to the SW would also allow libraries to share their metadata with greater ease which could lead to a reduction in time spent cataloguing, reducing library costs. In addition, the process of interlinking LD resources with those emerging from other cultural heritage institutions would allow researchers to be directed to a web of related data based on a single information search.

Despite these benefits, relatively few libraries are participating in the SW. In my view, one of the main reasons for this is that current LD technologies are not designed with the workflows, needs or expertise of librarians in mind.

My Research

One of my research goals is to explore how LD technologies could be made more engaging for librarians, with a particular focus on the process of interlinking LD datasets. I decided to focus on this area due to the fact that, although increasing numbers of libraries are publishing LD, few have successfully interlinked their data with other LD resources – a central aspect of the SW.

I’m currently in the process of collecting data from information professionals in relation to their views on LD for libraries, archives and other cultural heritage institutions. I’m also gathering data on the types of interfaces information professionals like to use. I’m doing this so that I can design an interface that is easy to use, and that will also meet librarians’ requirements in relation to interlinking LD datasets. If you would like to participate in this research, I would be most grateful if you completed my questionnaire at

Finally, another one of my goals is to inspire future collaborations between computer scientists and information professionals. I believe that both these groups have so much to offer each other in terms of ideas, expertise and data, and that there is huge potential for some really interesting and unique research. So please, get collaborating!


  1. Berners-Lee, T., Hendler, J., & Lassila, O. (2001). The Semantic Web. Scientific American, 284(5), 1-5.
  2. Bizer, C., Heath, T., & Berners-Lee, T. (2009). Linked Data – The Story So Far. International Journal on Semantic Web and Information Systems, 5(3), 1-22.
  3. Hastings, R.: Linked Data in Libraries: Status and Future Direction. Computers in 
Libraries, 35, 12–16 (2015)
  4. Gonzales, B. M.: Linking Libraries to the Web: Linked Data and the Future of the 
Bibliographic Record. ITAL, 33, 10–22 (2014)
  5. Ryan, C., Grant, R., Carragin, E., Collins, S., Decker, S., Lopes, N.: Linked Data 
Authority records for Irish Place Names. IJDL, 15, 73–85 (2015)
  6. OCLC: Online Computer Library Center, (2017), 
  7. Hallo, M., Lujan Mora, S., Trujillo Mondejar, J. C.: Transforming library catalogs into Linked Data. ICERI (2013)
  8. Mitchell, E. T.: Library Linked Data: Early Activity and Development. Libr Technol Rep, 52, 5–33 (2016)

About the authorpicture of lucy mckenna

Lucy McKenna completed her MLIS in UCD in 2015 after which she worked as a research assistant in the area of Human Computer Interaction with Benjamin Cowan of the UCD iSchool. She is currently a student in the ADAPT Centre, Trinity College Dublin, where she is working towards a PhD in Computer Science.



Destination Data for Graduates of Postgraduate Library Programmes in the Republic of Ireland

Since embarking on the MSc in Information and Library Management at Dublin Business School, I have met numerous lecturers, guest speakers and other L.I.S. professionals at different events, all of whom work in a diverse range of industries and positions within their respective organisations. This experience has contributed towards the direction I will be taking for my dissertation, as I intend to explore the scope of employment for L.I.S. Masters course graduates in Ireland.

The aim of my dissertation is to examine the sectors of employment that graduates have entered since completing their courses, including the organisations they have worked for and the roles that they have filled within those organisations. I hope to be able to generate comparable figures for the numbers of graduates who have pursued careers inside and outside of the library sector. I also wish to assess the degree to which the education received in L.I.S. Masters courses is transferable to employment outside of the library environment. The target population for this dissertation is those who have graduated from an L.I.S. Masters course in the Republic of Ireland since the academic year 2011/12 inclusive.

A significant amount of literature exists regarding the wide range of skillsets utilised in day-to-day work by modern librarians (Foutch, 2016), (Murray, 2014), (Mahraj, 2012), (Gordon, 2003). Considerable literature is also available regarding the transferability and applicability of librarians’ skillsets to jobs outside of the library environment (Spring, 2016), (Law, 2014). However, there does not seem to be sufficient research focused on recent graduates in Ireland, which specifically examines the areas of employment graduates enter after completing their L.I.S. course.

There is also previous research concerning the skills that L.I.S. professionals feel they lack when seeking employment outside of traditional L.I.S. environments. However, this research is based upon data gathered from professionals spread across the globe (Hazeri, Sarrafzadeh, & Martin, 2007) I hope to gather data that is specifically representative of graduates of Irish courses to compare with this existing research, as well as other studies in the literature.

Based on the literature reviewed, and my own experiences, I believe that there is an opportunity to conduct informative research examining the variety of graduates’ career paths, both inside and outside of the library environment within the Irish context.

If you are a graduate of an L.I.S. Masters course in the Republic of Ireland, who has graduated since the academic year 2011/12 inclusive, and would like to participate in this survey, please click the following link to complete the short questionnaire –


  1. Foutch, L. J. ., leslie.foutch@vanderbilt.ed. (2016). A New Partner in the Process: The Role of a Librarian on a Faculty Research Team. Collaborative Librarianship, 8(2), 80–83.
  2. Gordon, R. S. (2003). The accidental systems librarian. Medford, NJ: Information Today, Inc.
  3. Hazeri, A., Sarrafzadeh, M., & Martin, B. (2007). Reflections of Information Professionals on Knowledge Management Competencies in the LIS Curriculum. Journal of Education for Library and Information Science, (3), 168.
  4. Law, D. (2014). The world is our lobster. New Library World, 115(5/6), 200–210.
  5. Mahraj, K., (2012). Using Information Expertise to Enhance Massive Open Online Courses. Public Services Quarterly, 8(4), 359–368.
  6. Murray, T. E. . (2014). Applying Traditional Librarianship to New Roles for Special Librarians. Journal of Library Administration, 54(4), 327–336.
  7. Spring, H. (2016). Online learning: the brave new world of massive open online courses and the role of the health librarian. Health Information & Libraries Journal, (1), 84.

About The Author

Daire O’Driscoll is currently completing his MSc in Information and library management at Dublin Business School. He previously graduated with BA in Theological and Biblical Studies from Trinity College Dublin. Daire is currently volunteering in the Barnardos Learning and Development Service. Before commencing his Masters, he worked in a variety of different jobs, including as an English language teacher and a fiction writer.