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Libraries: perfect partners for research

There’s no doubt about it – we’re in the age of interdisciplinary science and it seems like everyone is looking to build innovative research teams. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to discover collaborators and make meaningful connections within one’s own building – let alone across campus or beyond.  Last fall, an ARRA stimulus award was made by NIH to fund an effort to create a national network of scientists.  The project awarded the University of Florida and six other partner institutions $12.2 million to expand VIVO, an open-source, semantic web!-based researcher directory and discovery tool.  Cornell University Library developed VIVO in 2003 and the platform was later implemented by librarians at the University of Florida.  This project presents an opportunity to create a centralized resource for scientists to discover collaborators and scholarship across institutions. 

Library staff at the VIVO partner institutions play a vital role in the project. Libraries have traditionally enjoyed strong liaison relationships with their communities – offering assistance on projects and providing customized information and technology support and educational opportunities. As neutral and trusted entities, they are well positioned to take on projects that benefit multiple user groups.  Library staff members at VIVO partner institutions take advantage of close professional relationships they have cultivated with clients to engage in outreach and support the platform locally, including dissemination and user support and training in VIVO-related services.  Library staff also play a key role in software development, data curation, and the development of local and project-wide ontological frameworks. Librarians and library staff are the perfect intermediary between the VIVO platform and the biomedical research community.  VIVO allows librarians to utilize their unique skill set and knowledgebase in support of the entire research enterprise.

Partner Institutions:

University of Florida | Cornell University | Indiana University | Washington University in St. Louis School of
Medicine
| The Scripps Research Institute | Weill Cornell Medical College | Ponce Medical College

To learn more about VIVO:

--VIVO National Outreach Team

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