AUB Libraries take part in the 3rd Lebanese Library Association Conference

May 23, 2016

The AUB Libraries took part in the 3-day annual conference organized by the Lebanese Library Association (LLA), entitled: “Thinking Together: Innovate, Share, Preserve and Access”. Hosted by the Lebanese American University (LAU), the conference was held between May 18th and May 20th and was preceded by a pre-conference workshop on May 17th.

The pre-conference workshop was delivered by Dr. Lokman I. Meho, the AUB University Librarian and was entitled: “Use of bibliometric tools and techniques in collection development and management”. The objective of the workshop was to train professional librarians on the effective use of bibliometric tools and techniques in the acquisition, selection, de-selection, and weeding of non-Arabic books and periodicals.

During the interactive workshop, Dr. Meho spoke of how to assess the quality, value, significance, and impact of books and journals, and decide whether to buy, subscribe to, keep, or discard them (if/when necessary). Dr. Meho presented a number of criteria and factors that can be used (e.g., use statistics, cost, uniqueness, relevance, date and place of publication, intrinsic characteristics, physical condition, and research value) and discussed a number of relevant data sources (e.g., Web of Science, Scopus, Google Scholar, Journal Citation Reports, and Scimago Journal Rankings). The workshop ended with several exercises on how to assess the research value of books and journals via citation-based indicators, such as citation count, h-index, journal impact factor ranking, and so on.

During the LLA conference, Ms. Basma Chebani, Head of Cataloging and Metadata Services Department and Mr. Elie Kahale, Head of Digital Initiatives and Imaging Department presented the Al-Ādāb Magazine archives, an AUB project lead by both of their departments.

Al-Ādāb Magazine, a literary and cultural Journal, established in 1953 by Dr. Souhail Idris, was published in print from 1953 till 2012, and is considered as an Arab cultural platform, despite the Arab States censorship. It focused on movements in literature and culture in the Arab world and it included files in political thought, poetry, novel, short stories, movies criticism, theater, and general culture.

The aim of the project is to preserve Al-Ādāb Magazine and to produce a searchable, full text database of the Magazine. Users will eventually be able to browse and access the metadata and the full text of the journal online at the volume, issue and article levels. Full text and index search by author, title and subject will be available using simple and advanced search techniques and full text articles will be available for downloading. The searching on the metadata (author, title and subjects) will also be available through the Library Online Catalog (OPAC).

The presenters focused on the major activities and main challenges during the creation of the Al-Ādāb Magazine online archives, especially when dealing with OCR (Optical Character Recognition) in Arabic language during the conversion of the digitized magazine pages into full text that is ready for search and downloading from AUB Libraries Content Management System.

For more about the conference and about the LLA, visit lebaneselibraryassociation.org.

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