Blog - Jo Alcock Consulting
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This week I’m participating in the Library Day in the Life project which charts the day-to-day activities of library workers at different points of the year. This is the sixth time I’ve participated; you can see my earlier posts from July 2009, January 2010, July 2010, January 2011 and July 2011. I’m currently a full-time Researcher at Evidence Base, Birmingham City University, UK. Although my job title doesn't include the word librarian and I don't work in a library, I still consider myself very much a librarian - our research helps support the library and information communities.Today was another continuing professional development event for me, again in London. This...

This week I’m participating in the Library Day in the Life project which charts the day-to-day activities of library workers at different points of the year. This is the sixth time I’ve participated; you can see my earlier posts from July 2009, January 2010, July 2010, January 2011 and July 2011. I’m currently a full-time Researcher at Evidence Base, Birmingham City University, UK. Although my job title doesn't include the word librarian and I don't work in a library, I still consider myself very much a librarian - our research helps support the library and information communities.Just a brief post - today I attended the LIS DREaM ...

As I'm currently working on my CILIP Chartership, I'm getting into the habit of reflecting on any professional activities. I also think it's good practice after a conference to reflect on what you learnt (in terms of the conference content and also the logistics and organisational aspects), and had an interesting conversation last night at dinner about how useful it was to record the lessons learned after each conference (we also discussed how at a conference it was common to have more showers than meals!*). So here are a few points I have been mulling over after ALA Midwinter 2012...

Tomorrow morning (at the obscene time of 3am) I'll be getting up and getting ready to fly to Dallas for ALA Midwinter 2012. I've packed my shoulder pads, I know who shot JR, and I've been humming "da daaa, da daaa, da da da da da da". (I'm afraid that's all I know about the Dallas TV show and though it was tempting to purchase a series to watch on the flight, I opted for The Big C instead). Here's highlights of what I'll be up to during the conference (my full conference schedule is available here though it doesn't include all...

Last week I gave my first ever webinar as part of the American Library Association (ALA) Library and Information Technology Association (LITA) Mobile Computing Interest Group (MCIG) virtual meeting.* It took place instead of a physical meeting at ALA Midwinter to enable more people to attend and present. There were five presentations in 90 minutes so we each had 10 minutes to present and 5 minutes of Q&A. If you're interested in the topic, you can watch a recording of the webinar - see the blog post I wrote for our m-library community support project blog. I thought it would be useful to reflect on my experiences of presenting a webinar - I'm noticing more and more webinars set up to enable more people to attend virtually across different time zones and without the expense of travelling, so I imagine presenting at webinars is something we'll be seeing a lot more of in future.This is my setup - home office with laptop for webinar software, headset for listening/speaking, iPhone for timing, and iPad and notepad for presentation prompts (and all important glass of Ribena!): [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Webinar setup"]Webinar setup[/caption]

I get asked this question a lot, and I often struggle to answer it. My job is pretty unique so there's not really much to easily compare it to. I'm part of an academic library but rarely set foot into the library. I have an office on a University campus but don't visit it very often as I regularly work from home or on the go (the train is a favourite of mine!). My job title is Evidence Based Researcher; if you asked me I would probably tell you I'm an academic researcher/librarian, but my partner would probably say he wasn't really sure how to describe it but I'm a sort of information consultant. So what do I actually do? The Special Libraries Association (SLA) have organised an Alternative Careers webinar to help introduce some of the more alternative jobs out there in the information profession. Bethan Ruddock, who is the webinar host, asked me if I'd be able to answer some questions about my job to help her research for the webinar (Bethan also has a pretty unique job but wants to get some other examples to share). I was happy to oblige and am reproducing what I sent her. So if you're not sure what I actually do, this might give you more of an idea...

I found last year's resolutions useful in helping keep me on the right track last year, and am pleased to say I kept most of them - here's a review: Complete my MSc dissertation - finished in July Attend more conferences - I attended lots of great conferences and events in 2011 Implement the Getting Things Done system at home and work - I seem to have this sorted for electronic information, though need to work on physical organisation of paperwork and notes Participate in Library Day in the Life - I took part in both rounds of Library Day in the Life in...

I'm a creature of habit, so I'm continuing the tradition of posting an end of year blog post (see 2008, 2009, and 2010). It's actually really useful for me to look back and see what I did each year. So, what has 2011 involved? 2011 mosaic 1. My ALA 2011 badge complete with ribbons!, 2. Louisiana State University, 3. Osney Building at University of Oxford, 4. CILIP signage

My MSc Econ dissertation titled 'Strategic marketing in academic libraries: an examination of current practice' is now available on Aberystwyth University's open access repository. I know a number of people said they were interested in viewing it so I've included the details below. I have also added it to my publications page. Strategic marketing in academic libraries: an investigation of current practice Purpose The purpose of the research is to investigate strategic marketing in academic libraries, incorporating elements of organisational orientation, strategic planning, and processes and procedures to support these. Aims and objectives The aim of the research is to build on existing literature, extending the knowledge of...

At Online Information 2011, I presented in one of the European Librarians Theatre panel discussions. The discussions are hosted by EBSCO and SLA Europe and bring together librarians from different parts of Europe to discuss a topic and the experiences within their country. My session, 'Everyone is talking but is anyone listening?' focused on social media. It was chaired by Sara Batts (see tweet below), and my fellow panelists were Katrin Weller and Dennie Haye.   I think the panel discussion flowed well - there was largely agreement across the board on a number of different factors, suggesting that libraries across Europe are at a similar stage with social media (the panel had representatives from UK, Germany and The Netherlands). There were some really interesting examples from my fellow panelists - one example of Yammer being used for internal communication (in an international organisation with staff dispersed geographically), and one example of Facebook being used by a University before students arrived to help answers queries and help them begin to make friends. The main messages I took from the session were that libraries and librarians should experiment with social media to see what works, and should aim to understand more about their users as no two libraries will use social media in the same way. You can see the tweets from the session at the #elt2011 hashtag (thanks to @WoodsieGirl and @EBSCOUK for such comprehensive tweeting!) and there is a write up of the session on the SLA Europe website. As mentioned before, I decided to get  information for my section of the discussion via a brief survey - many thanks to those who gave feedback. The main themes emerging from the results of this are shown below.