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Developing a Library Research Platform for 21st Century Scholars

The direct intersection between university libraries and academic research has significantly diminished in the past two decades. For continued relevance on campus academic libraries need to develop a new approach to working within the research endeavour.
Critical Roles for Libraries in Today's Research Enterprise
December 11, 2019
Omni Shoreham Hotel
Washington, D.C.

Critical Roles for Libraries in Today's Research Enterprise

December 11, 2019 at the Omni Shoreham in Washington, D.C.

Research has changed: have libraries? Today many academic libraries are seeking ways to better align with current research practice and to engage as vital partners in campus research. The issues are critical, necessary changes are fundamental, and libraries are developing new means and partnerships to sustain relevance.

Held following the CNI Fall Membership Meeting, Critical Roles for Libraries in Today’s Research Enterprise is a one-day symposium created for librarians, research administrators, and technology professionals to identify responses to this challenge.

Symposium Information:


Why Attend?

This symposium is a venue for the exploration of strategies for academic libraries to better align with current research practices and reposition themselves as critical partners in the research enterprise.

Library leaders will examine new organizational structures, programs and services, innovative spaces, and collaborative models. Research administrators will evaluate the impact of these new developments and describe future opportunities. Faculty researchers will characterize the potential for new synergies and functional partnerships. Most importantly, these discussions will give attendees the opportunity to collaborate in developing strategies to apply at their own institutions.



7:30 Continental Breakfast
8:00 Welcome and Introductory Comments

Thomas Hickerson (University of Calgary)

8:15 Keynote
Aiming at Two Moving Targets – The Changing Landscapes of Research and Libraries

Wolfram Horstmann (Georg-August-University of Göttingen)

9:00 New Directions: Libraries and the Research Enterprise

Moderator: Mary Lee Kennedy (Association of Research Libraries)

Working from their experiences leading libraries in new initiatives that explore new roles for libraries in research these speakers will discuss the lessons they have learned and their thoughts on how best to engage libraries with campus research.

Charles Eckman (University of Miami) Interdisciplinary Research – A Case for Library Engagement 
Xuemao Wang (University of Cincinnati) Leading and Enabling Enterprise-wide Transdisciplinary Digital Scholarship
Thomas Hickerson (University of Calgary) Redefining Our Role in Academic Research

Research Administrators:  Reflections and Advice on Developments at These Three Institutions

Responding Panel: Pat Limbach (University of Cincinnati), Susan Morgan (University of Miami), Penny Pexman (University of Calgary)

10:30 Break
10:50 Key Strategies for Transformational Change

Moderator: John Brosz (University of Calgary)

Joy Kirchner (York University) Full Scale Restructuring to Optimize Capacity to Enable Campus Research Intensification Priorities
Greg Raschke (North Carolina State University) The Collection as Platform: Synthesizing Content, Computation, and Experience
Leonora Crema (University of British Columbia) Building Partnerships with Research Administration

11:45 Participatory Session: Identifying Further Strategies

Moderator: Joan Lippincott (Coalition for Networked Information)

12:15 Lunch
1:00 Recap of Strategies

Joan Lippincott (Coalition for Networked Information)

1:10 Group Discussions:  Highest Impact Strategies 
Form into groups based on selected strategy.  Discussion of high impact techniques to implement the strategy.  Reporting of groups results on flipcharts.  There will be opportunity to participate in two successive groups.
2:15 Break, including time for viewing strategy flipcharts
2:40 Group Discussions:  Action Steps
Attendees select their highest value strategy and create action steps for their organization; discuss within groups.
3:10 Research Administrators:  Reflections and Advice

Penny Pexman (University of Calgary)Susan Morgan (University of Miami)

3:30 Summary Comments

Clifford Lynch (Coalition for Networked Information)

3:40 Closing

Thomas Hickerson (University of Calgary)

3:45 Symposium Ends



Registration is no-cost but limited. Since the target audience for this event are colleges and universities, for-profit corporations are requested to limit their representation to one individual.

We have reached our projected maximum number of attendees.  Registering at will add you to the waiting list and we will notify you if space becomes available.


Organizational Team

  • Thomas Hickerson (University of Calgary)
  • Charles Eckman (University of Miami)
  • Xuemao Wang (University of Cincinnati)
  • Leonora Crema (University of British Columbia)
  • Joan Lippincott (CNI)
  • Jacqueline Eudell (CNI)
  • John Brosz (University of Calgary)



The Proceedings of the Critical Roles Symposium provides a summary of this event's talks, panels, with specific focus on the outcomes of the group discussions that occurred during this event.

Additionally, slides from talks are available:



Omni Shoreham Hotel
2500 Calvert Street NW 
Washington, District of Columbia 20008



Wolfram HorstmannWolfram Horstmann is the director of the Göttingen State and University Library at Georg-August-University of Göttingen since 2014. Prior to his current position he was Associate Director at the Bodleian Libraries of the University of Oxford, UK. He is currently leading several strategic projects in the areas scholarly communication, open access, research data and digital transformation for the University of Göttingen and for the library in Göttingen. He worked as executive member and Chair of the Steering Group on Scholarly Communication and Research Infrastructure for the European research library association LIBER and the Consortium of European Research Libraries CERL. He is active in the Research Data Alliance (RDA), e.g. as co-founder of the working groups, e.g. "Libraries for Research Data" and "Long Tail of Research Data". He acted as advisor to several bodies and initiatives, e.g. the European Commission, the German Research Foundation DFG, or the Nature journal "Scientific Data".  Prior, he was Chief Information Officer for Scholarly Information at Bielefeld University, where he was responsible for the strategic development of the institutional services for content, data and tools in research and education between 2007 and 2011. He is a biologist by training, having worked in the field of computational neuroscience, did a PhD in the context of Philosophy of Science before he actively turned his attention towards scholarly communication and libraries.

John Brosz is Project Coordinator at the University of Calgary's Libraries and Cultural Resources working on the Academic Research and University Libraries: Creating a New Model for Collaboration project funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.  John also specializes in providing data visualization and research data management support, consultation, and training to scholars.  He manages the Library’s Visualization Studio, a space for researchers to explore visualizations and data with the large, 35 million pixel high-resolution display.  Through his past position as a post-doctoral researcher and his PhD in computer science, he has been actively involved in research related to information visualization and computer graphics.

Leonora CremaLeonora Crema is Scholarly Communications Librarian at the University of British Columbia.  From 2006-2015, Crema served terms as UBC’s Associate University Librarian for Client Services & Programs, AUL for Planning and Community Relations, and Director of External Relations for the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. Prior to this she held management roles spanning public services, project management, and IT.

Active in professional associations, including serving as President of the British Columbia Library Association, Crema speaks regularly on topics such as leadership, technology innovation and library space design. She has led the programmatic design or renovation of three library buildings on the UBC campus. Her recent focus has been projects incentivizing OERs and open publishing. 

Crema has received a variety of career recognitions including a national award for innovation from the Canadian Association of University Business Officers, and the Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries’ award for outstanding contributions to the consortium.  She holds Master of Arts and Master of Library Science degrees from the University of British Columbia.

Charles EckmanCharles Eckman is Dean and University Librarian at the University of Miami. He previously served as University Librarian and Dean of Library Services at Simon Fraser University (2010-2013), Associate University Librarian and Director of Collections at the University of California, Berkeley (2006-2010), and Principal Government Documents Librarian and Head of the Social Sciences Resource Group at Stanford University (1997-2006).

Dean Eckman currently serves on the board of directors for the International Association of University Libraries. He has served on the boards of directors for the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries, Canadian Association of Research Libraries, and Canadian Research Knowledge Network. He served on the Depository Library Council to the Public Printer (2003-2006).

Dean Eckman’s research interests include information policy, open access, digital scholarship, history of scholarly communication and cultural organization administration. He has managed and consulted on a variety of digital library initiatives including several Federal grant-funded projects. He is currently serving as co-principal investigator with his colleague Dr. Jill Deupi at the Lowe Art Museum on a four-year project funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation focused on promoting campus-based academic library and museum collaboration, faculty engagement and the conservation of special collections, archives and works of art on paper.  Charles Eckman holds a master’s degree in library and information studies from UC Berkeley, a PhD and master’s degrees in politics from Princeton University, and a bachelor’s degree in political science from Indiana University.

Thomas HickersonThomas Hickerson formerly served as Vice Provost for Libraries and Cultural Resources and University Librarian at the University of Calgary, 2006-2018. Libraries and Cultural Resources is a principal division of the University, combining the university libraries, university art museums, and the University of Calgary Press. Hickerson exercised principal responsibility for the programmatic design of the Taylor Family Digital Library and a high-density storage facility, a $205 million capital project of the University of Calgary.

Tom came to Calgary after an extensive career as an archivist, technology innovator, and library administrator at Cornell University. In 2001, he was named a Computerworld Honors Program Laureate in recognition of his contributions to the “use of information technologies for the benefit of society.”

He is a Fellow and former President of the Society of American Archivists and served on the Executive Committee of the International Council on Archives. Since coming to Calgary, he has served as President of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, as a Steering Committee member of the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC), and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Research Libraries. He is also founding-creator of the “Designing Libraries for the 21st Century” conference series.

He has recently served as lead investigator for Multidisciplinary Research Infrastructure: The Role of 21st Century Libraries and for Media Reformatting and Digital Preservation Planning Project: The EMI Music Canada Archive at the University of Calgary. Presently, he serves as a lead investigator for Academic Research and University Libraries: Creating a New Model for Collaboration and Renewing Access to Culturally Significant Audiovisual Recordings (all sponsored by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation).

Mary Lee KennedyMary Lee Kennedy is the Association of Research Libraries' (ARL) executive director where she leads the development of and implements ARL’s strategic direction. She builds on ARL’s strengths as a leader and partner in the research and learning ecosystem, as a catalyzer of global opportunity and value through its suite of programs and initiatives, and as a culture that embraces innovation, diversity, and inclusion.

Prior to coming to ARL, Mary Lee was principal of the Kennedy Group, where she partnered with organizations to empower local and global communities to create and use knowledge that enhances lives. She has a wealth of experience in academic research libraries and knowledge corporations, most recently at New York Public Library (NYPL), where she held the position of chief library officer (2013–2016). Before going to NYPL, she served at Harvard University as senior associate provost for the Harvard Library (2011–2013) and executive director of Knowledge and Library Services, Harvard Business School (2004–2011). Prior to her roles at Harvard, she was director of the Knowledge Network Group at Microsoft (1998–2004).

Mary Lee earned her BA in social psychology and classics at University of Alberta and her master of library science at Louisiana State University. She has lived in Canada, the US, and Mexico; is bilingual in English and Spanish; and has a working knowledge of French.

Joy KirchnnerJoy Kirchner is the Dean of Libraries at York University. A new full scale organizational restructure has been implemented to reinforce the Libraries’ expertise in digital scholarship, data and repository infrastructure, scholarly communications and research in alignment with the University’s academic plan and its research intensification priority. Joy is the chair of York’s campus-wide Steering Committee on Open Access and Open Data; she is Executive Chair of the Ontario Council of Research Libraries; she serves on the SPARC Steering Committee and SPARC’s OER Advisory Group, and she is past chair of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries Advancing Research Committee. As the first chair and one of the initiators and developers of the ACRL Scholarly Communication roadshows, she has provided consultation to other North American institutions on advancing open access policies and scholarly communications programs and has been thrilled to see the success of the roadshow continue and serve as a model for others to adopt. Prior positions include her roles as Associate University Librarian for Content & Collections at the University of Minnesota where she launched a new Open Scholarship and Publishing Office and Scholarly Communications Coordinator at the University of British Columbia where she headed UBC’s Scholarly Communication & Copyright office and launched a new service model for copyright services. Previously she was a Collections Coordinator, E-resources Librarian and Science & Engineering Librarian. Her current research and scholarship is focused on organizational modelling to advance, resource and provision emergent areas in libraries.

Dr. Pat LimbachPat Limbach is the Vice President for Research, an Ohio Eminent Scholar and Professor of Chemistry at the University of Cincinnati. He is a bioanalytical chemist with research interests in mass spectrometry, modified ribonucleic acids (RNAs), ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes and protein translation. After earning an undergraduate degree from Centre College in 1988, he studied under the direction of Dr. Alan G. Marshall at The Ohio State University. While there, his graduate research focused on instrumentation improvements to Fourier Transform Ion Cyclotron Resonance Mass Spectrometry. He received his PhD from OSU in 1992. He then took a postdoctoral position at the University of Utah working with Dr. James A. McCloskey. While in Utah, he worked in the areas of RNA chemistry and nucleic acid mass spectrometry. In 1995, he joined the faculty at Louisiana State University as an Assistant Professor and was promoted to Associate Professor in 1999. In 2001, he moved to his current position in Cincinnati, being promoted to Professor in 2005. He has served as Department Head in Chemistry at UC from 2005-2010 and as Interim Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies in the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences in 2013.  He has served as the VP of Research since 2016. Dr. Limbach and his group seek to advance the area of mass spectrometry within modified RNAs and RNPs and collaborate extensively with researchers inside the state of Ohio and throughout the world. Dr. Limbach is an active member of the American Chemical Society, American Society for Mass Spectrometry, Sigma Xi and a lifetime member of Phi Kappa Phi. He also serves on the Scientific Advisory Board for RiboNova, Inc. and is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Joan K. Lippincott is the Associate Executive Director of the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI), a joint program of the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and EDUCAUSE, based in Washington, DC.

At CNI, Joan has provided leadership for programs in teaching and learning, learning spaces, digital scholarship, and assessment. She has served on the advisory boards of the Learning Spaces Collaboratory and the Learning Space Toolkit project. In addition to consulting with many academic libraries for their space renovation projects, she has been on the planning committee for the Designing Libraries for the 21st Century conference since its inception.

Previously, Joan was a librarian at Cornell, Georgetown, and George Washington universities, and SUNY Brockport. Joan received her Ph.D. in higher education policy, planning, and administration from the University of Maryland, an M.L.S. from SUNY Geneseo, and a B.A. from Vassar College.

Clifford LynchClifford Lynch is the Executive Director of the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI), a joint program of the Association of Research Libraries and EDUCAUSE, based in Washington, DC.

Prior to joining CNI, Lynch spent 18 years at the University of California Office of the President, the last 10 as Director of Library Automation. Lynch, who holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley, is an adjunct professor at Berkeley’s School of Information. He is both a past president and recipient of the Award of Merit of the American Society for Information Science, and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the National Information Standards Organization.

He served as co-chair of the National Academies Board on Research Data and Information (BRDI) from 2011-16, and he is active on numerous advisory boards and visiting committees. His work has been recognized by the American Library Association’s Lippincott Award, the EDUCAUSE Leadership Award in Public Policy and Practice, and the American Society for Engineering Education’s Homer Bernhardt Award. In 2017, Lynch was selected as an Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Fellow.

Pat LimbachSusan E. Morgan is currently the Associate Provost for Research Development at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, FL, where she also holds an appointment as Professor in the Communication Studies department. Until 2017, Morgan served as the Associate Dean for Research as well as the Director for the Center for Communication, Culture, and Change at the University of Miami. 

Dr. Morgan’s research interests involve the design and evaluation of persuasive messages targeting health behavior change in multicultural populations. Her research has been supported by over $9 million in grant funding from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the Department of Health and Human Services.

Much of her recent research involves conducting and evaluating multimedia campaigns to promote organ donation in worksite and community settings. Additionally, Dr. Morgan has conducted large-scale studies of how the mass media frames organ donation and the effects of that framing on public attitudes and behaviors. 

Dr. Morgan's current research continues to utilize qualitative and quantitative research methodologies to investigate message design features that increase the effectiveness of health-promotive campaigns.  Her current area of interest is the development of interventions designed to improve accrual rates of patients to clinical trials.

Dr. Morgan serves on the Editorial Board of five journals and is an active reviewer for 15 journals. She has published over 80 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in the area of health communication. Her research has appeared in medical and leading social science journals including Clinical Transplantation, Communication Monographs, Journal of Communication, Communication Theory, Journal of Applied Communication Research, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Health Psychology, and the Journal of the National Medical Association. She is also the author of a book, From Numbers to Words: Reporting Statistical Results for the Social Sciences.

Penny PexmanPenny Pexman is currently Associate Vice-President (Research) at the University of Calgary.  Penny earned her PhD in Psychology at the University of Western Ontario in 1998 and joined the University of Calgary the same year. Her research expertise is in cognitive development, psycholinguistics, and cognitive neuroscience. For the past 2 decades her research has been funded by both SSHRC and NSERC, including NSERC’s prestigious Discovery Accelerator Supplement in 2008. She has served on multiple national grant adjudication panels, including NSERC Discovery, Research Tools and Instruments, and Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship committees. She was appointed the University of Calgary’s SSHRC Leader in 2017 and in that role serves as a point of contact between SSHRC and the University of Calgary. An award-winning mentor and researcher, Penny is an elected Fellow of both the Canadian Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science. 

RashkeGreg Raschke is the Senior Vice Provost and Director of Libraries at North Carolina State where he leads a system comprised of two main libraries, three branches, and over two-hundred FTE staff.  He leads partnerships and strategic efforts in pursuit of its vision – to make the Libraries NC State’s competitive advantage.  He served for over a decade as the Associate Director for Collections and Scholarly Communication with the Libraries where he led programs to build, manage, and preserve the Libraries’ extensive general and special collections.  Greg served on the leadership team that envisioned, planned, and implemented the award winning James B. Hunt Jr. Library.  He has significant experience managing fundraising, annual giving, and naming opportunity campaigns.  

Xuemao WangXuemao Wang is the Vice Provost for Digital Scholarship, Dean and University Librarian of the University of Cincinnati. In these roles he oversees and facilitates the formation and execution of visions, strategies and plan implementation for university-wide Digital Scholarship and the University Libraries. In addition, he serves as a Special Advisor to the Provost on China Strategies. Prior to working at UC, he served as the Associate Vice Provost of University Libraries at Emory University. He has also held positions at Johns Hopkins University’s Sheridan Libraries, the Metropolitan New York Library Council, Queens Borough Public library and worked as an academic librarian in China in his early career.

Xuemao has over 30+ years of diverse library and information technologies, services, management and leadership experience, with a career that spans the public, academic, large library consortium and international library worlds. He has held global leadership positions in the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), American Library Association (ALA), Center for Research Libraries (CRL), Association of Research Libraries (ARL), Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC), and OhioLINK. He has been frequently invited to international conferences to give speeches on topics of digital scholarship, digital humanities, library strategic planning and implementation of transformational changes. He has strong connections and networks with global library community leaders, particularly with China’s academic and library leaders. In his additional role as Special Advisor to the Provost on China Strategies, he has worked with multiple UC colleges to establish large scale, successful joint education programs with Chinese universities.

Xuemao received a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) from the Frank G. Zarb School of Business, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY; a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) from the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC; and a Master of Library Science (MLS) from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania, Kutztown, PA. He received his Bachelor of Arts (BA) from Wuhan University, China.