Library Pipeline Opportunities, Funding, and Services for Libraries and Library Professionals Tue, 02 Jan 2018 15:11:28 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Building and Sustaining a Grassroots Library Organization: A Three Year Retrospective of Library Pipeline Tue, 02 Jan 2018 15:10:45 +0000  

Mr. Brian, Construction Graphic (


Innovation in Libraries May Grant: All Abilities Lending Collection Thu, 01 Jun 2017 14:27:05 +0000 Continue reading Innovation in Libraries May Grant: All Abilities Lending Collection]]>  

The Saline District Library (MI) is building a collection of sensory integration equipment for check out by patrons called the All Abilities Collection. The purpose of the collection is to provide parents/teachers/caregivers of special needs children and teens a chance to try out some of the many tools available for sensory integration and social skill development. Since children of all abilities respond differently to toys and equipment, it is often a challenge for parents of children with disabilities to know if any particular item is one that will work for their specific child. The lending nature of the collection will allow patrons to try these items  at home or school, allowing for a natural experience for the child and caregiver. It will also help the library serve their special needs community by showing that the library is welcome and open to all. The library will be collaborating with local educators and an occupational therapist to select items that will offer a full spectrum of interests and needs, as well as to create instructional guides that explain the operations of the items as well as the therapeutic value they can offer.

Wow! This grant is indeed AWESOME! We are putting together a collection of gadgets and equipment for parents/teachers/caregivers of special needs children and teens to try out some of the many tools available for sensory integration and social skill development. This collection will help patrons try these items at home or school allowing for a natural experience with the item. We will be providing an amazing, much needed, and helpful service to a patron base that is often under-served and who experience significant financial hardships.

Often libraries are not viewed as places that would be supportive of special needs populations. To combat this, we need to provide services that speak directly to the needs of the community and to do the outreach so the intended patrons know these services and collections exist. By providing items that encourage inclusion, we are able to expand the role the library can play in the lives of more and varied patrons.

– Katie Mitchell, Teen Librarian, Saline Public Library

We’re now accepting applications for our June 2017 micro-grant (deadline June 15). For more information, visit the grant webpage or apply via the Awesome Foundation.

Innovation in Libraries April Grant: Refugee and Migrant Library in Serbia Mon, 01 May 2017 20:03:01 +0000 Continue reading Innovation in Libraries April Grant: Refugee and Migrant Library in Serbia]]>

This project will create a library for refugees and migrants in transit in Belgrade, Serbia coming from war-torn and underdeveloped countries. Currently, around 1,500 to 2,000 Urdu speaking refugees and migrants from Afghanistan and Pakistan, 2,500-3,000 Farsi speaking refugees from Afghanistan and Iran, and 1,400 from Syria and other Middle East countries are stranded in transit in Serbia, attempting to find safety and security in Europe. In conversations, Jasmine discovered that many refugees requested access to reading material to expand their knowledge as they wait for their name to be accepted for various asylum enabling lists. Alongside their European language classes here in Belgrade, many refugees crave to fill their abundant free time with continued basic education while waiting for their refugee and migrant applications to be processed.

With a grant from the Critical Language Scholarship Alumni Fund and help from on-the-ground activists in Pakistan, Jasmine was able to collect a number of books for refugee enrichment and learning in the Urdu language. With a successful GoFundMe page, Jasmine funded the shipping of the cargo from Pakistan to Serbia. The Awesome Foundation funding will add the Pashto, Farsi, and Arabic language material to the library. With the availability of this material, Syrian refugees (who mainly live in refugee camps scattered throughout Serbia) visiting Belgrade and Afghani refugees and migrants who don’t speak Urdu will have access to reading material as well. Reading material includes textbooks, non-fiction books, poetry, novels, children’s books, and beginner script books for teaching language. Book will be purchased from bookstores in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran.

The library will be maintained by the Education Center in downtown Belgrade and managed by the local NGOs Refugee Aid Serbia and North Star. This open library will be accessible to all refugees and migrants in Serbia.

I’m so grateful for the Innovation in Libraries AF Chapter for providing the resources to expand the refugee and migrant library in Belgrade, Serbia to include literature in Farsi, Pashto and Arabic. The grant will positively influence thousands of people enduring the treacherous journey from conflict stricken and opportunity deprived regions. Sustainable educational and enrichment efforts are crucial to making aid well-rounded. I hope this library inspires more of its kind throughout the refugee and migrant route to Europe.” – Jasmine Passa, Fulbright Scholar, Niš, Serbia

We’re now accepting applications for our May 2017 micro-grant (deadline May 15). For more information, visit the grant webpage or apply via the Awesome Foundation.

First Innovation in Libraries micro-grant winner announced Sat, 01 Apr 2017 00:57:12 +0000 Continue reading First Innovation in Libraries micro-grant winner announced]]> The Awesome Foundation homepage, with tiled photos of recent grant winners from around the world

We’re pleased to reveal the first “Innovation in Libraries” Awesome Foundation chapter grantee: the “100 Years, 100 Selfies” project of Summit, Illinois, USA.

The project is a partnership between the Summit Public Library and community organization The Warehouse Project & Gallery (TWP&G). The partnership’s new $1000 grant will go towards profiling 100 residents from the Summit community to celebrate the library’s upcoming centennial.

The resulting exhibit, consisting of interviews and photographs, will both honor the tremendous contributions the library has made to the community over the last 100 years and also allow the members of TWP&G to utilize their artistic talents to document and narrate the community’s appreciation for its public library.

As one of the Innovation in Libraries (IiL) chapter’s twenty trustees explained, “I was impressed by the way this project brought together community collaboration and engagement with creativity, social history and library advocacy activities…The physical exhibition sounds like an excellent opportunity to bring [the Summit, IL] community together.”

Do you have a library-related project that’s inclusive, daring, and diverse? We want to fund it!

We’re now accepting applications for our April 2017 micro-grant (deadline April 15). For more information, visit the grant webpage or apply via the Awesome Foundation.

Apply for the “Innovation in Libraries” grant Wed, 01 Mar 2017 15:52:50 +0000 We’re excited to announce that the Innovation in Libraries grant is now accepting applications:

With this grant, we seek to make rank-and-file librarians a catalyst for prototyping library-based innovations (both technical and non-technical in nature) that are inclusive, daring, and diverse.

The first round of applications will be accepted starting today, 1 March 2017, deadline of 15 March 2017. New grants are awarded monthly through Aug. 2017, starting the 1st of each month and closing the 15th of each month.

For more information, visit the grant webpage or apply via the Awesome Foundation.

State of Library Pipeline: January 2017 Wed, 25 Jan 2017 14:51:18 +0000 Continue reading State of Library Pipeline: January 2017]]> Library Pipeline entered 2017 with a renewed commitment to improving the library as an institution and librarianship as a profession. Over the past year, Library Pipeline has been powered by volunteers doing a lot of quiet work on exciting projects, as well as a fresh organizing strategy, a reorganized board and board chair, and a huge amount of passion from all.

Since we last checked in:

Pipeline is and always has been a “platform for projects”. We’re currently comprised of a group of librarians who are deeply passionate about changing our profession for the better, and who have founded pilot projects that attend to librarianship’s most pressing needs (as previously identified in each committee’s environmental scan).

Currently, we’re a small and nimble organization. We’re not an “official” 501c3 non-profit, and we may never be. We don’t have an operating budget, but we might not need one.

To be honest, we’re still working to articulate what Pipeline is–and we believe that this sense of uncertainty breeds opportunity.

If you’re a self-starter who shares our passion for improving librarianship for all and has a “bootstrap” mentality, we encourage you to join our ranks, lead a project, or even chair a committee!

In the coming months, the board will work to clarify and crystallize Pipeline’s mission and a short-term plan for the organization, with the most crucial guidance coming from our general membership. Depending upon the results of these efforts, a new organizing strategy may emerge. In the meantime, committees will continue to self-organize around projects set out in each group’s environmental scan. We’ll be recruiting new board members, too.

We’re also renewing our commitment to transparency. We’ll be updating this site soon to make information easier to access (including more updates to this blog), and we’ll more regularly be in contact with the general membership via the Library Pipeline Google Group.

If you’d like to know more about Library Pipeline, please contact the Board or follow us on Twitter (@librarypipeline).

Library Pipeline launches grassroots funding effort to support innovation in libraries Tue, 24 Jan 2017 21:00:43 +0000 Continue reading Library Pipeline launches grassroots funding effort to support innovation in libraries]]> Library Pipeline’s Innovation Committee is launching a new, community-powered grant opportunity. Each month, we’ll give out $1000 USD to a project that suggests creative solutions, proposes a new way of thinking about library services, and supports underserved and diverse communities. Want to contribute or apply? Read on!

We’ve partnered with the Awesome Foundation to found an Innovation in Libraries chapter that will be the organizing hub of our efforts. A community of twenty “trustees” will give $50/month* each towards projects they deem worthy of support. Award recipients will put that $1000 towards their innovative projects and will be asked to report back publicly on what worked, what didn’t, and what they learned–as well as to make the results of their efforts openly available to others for reuse and remixing in communities across the world.

Before we can start funding projects, we need trustees! Apply now to join our 6 month pilot!

Information on how to apply for a monthly grant is coming soon. Stay tuned!


* We are also accepting a limited number of applications for sponsored trustee seats (i.e. trustees who participate in the grant selection process but are not required to contribute $50/month towards funding projects). For more information, email Robin at

One LIS journal editor’s approach to encouraging Open Access Mon, 21 Nov 2016 18:57:34 +0000 Continue reading One LIS journal editor’s approach to encouraging Open Access]]> The Green Open Access Working Group now has 29 volunteers encouraging self-deposit of articles from 43 LIS journals. I’m one of these volunteers.

Recently, I reached out to the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Web Librarianship, Hannah Gascho Rempel, to ask for her support in emailing her journal’s authors, encouraging them to self-archive their work in an open access repository.

Hannah responded enthusiastically and thoughtfully, explaining that she encourages all her authors to self-deposit as part of the official journal editorial process. Here’s how.

Hannah shared that since she became Editor-in-Chief at the JWL two years ago, each accepted manuscript receives the following recommendation as part of the acceptance email:

I have attached the final accepted version of the manuscript. If you have an institutional repository, see this link for how to attribute the publisher when or if you post this version of your accepted work (which I encourage you to do):

Hannah reports that thanks to that message (as well as a more general shift in OA trends), 42% of Journal of Web Librarianship articles from 2014-2016 are now made open access through self-deposit–up from 20% from 2011-2013.

For journals like Hannah’s, where flipping to a fully Gold OA model isn’t currently an option, editorial support in the way of a small acceptance workflow tweak can make a big difference in opening up the literature. That’s why the Green Open Access Working Group’s volunteers are reaching out to journal editors to encourage such practices.

Author-side nudges toward open access are important as well. As Beth Blakesley, editor of Journal of Academic Librarianship, reports via email, there’s still a surprising lack of knowledge among LIS authors as to their own self-deposit rights:

I’ve been contacted by several people shortly after they’ve signed their agreements asking about whether they can put the their articles in their IRs.  I’ve also had a lot of questions asking for a clarification on what version can be used in an IR.  This always gives me pause, because we are making so much of the need for academic librarians to play a role in scholarly communication endeavors, but we may not be as well equipped as we should be.

By working to encourage openness from both angles, alongside supportive journal editors and receptive authors, the Library Pipeline Green OA Working Group is hopeful that our pilot will help increase ongoing access to the LIS literature. More to come on the success of our efforts, soon.

Help Library Pipeline liberate the 90% of LIS research that’s inaccessible Tue, 25 Oct 2016 14:00:10 +0000 Continue reading Help Library Pipeline liberate the 90% of LIS research that’s inaccessible]]> This post was authored by Library Pipeline Publications Committee chair, Marcus Banks.

We’ve got a problem: over 90% of LIS articles are inaccessible to those without a journal subscription.

It sounds incredible, but it’s true. We recently benchmarked a portion of the LIS literature to understand exactly how many articles were accessible to all: how many were published OA, how many were self-archived by LIS authors, and how many articles were inaccessible to non-subscribers.

Within the five journals we looked at (which comprise ~10% of all LIS journals published by a leading publisher), 203 articles were published overall in 2013 and 2014. (We chose this time span intentionally–we wanted to make sure any embargoes on self-archiving would be expired.) Of the 203 articles published during that two year period, only 19 (roughly 9%) were free to access as of August 2016: four had been self-archived, and 15 had been either published OA or made “free to read” by the journal.

We know our quick-and-dirty study isn’t perfect, but it’s a start. And it confirms what we already know: that for a profession that values access to information, we’re pretty abysmal at making our own research available.

We need to make a change. Here’s an idea we have for doing just that.

As its first major endeavor, the Library Pipeline Publications Committee will focus on increasing access to librarian-produced scholarly research. Much of this fine work is in subscription-based journals, because librarians face the same pressures to publish in “brand-name” journals as do other scholars.

We believe that self-archiving is the perfect solution to this dilemma, at least as an intermediate step on the way toward complete and immediate open for library and information sciences (LIS) literature. With rare exceptions, LIS journals allow for self-archiving of the final accepted manuscript — either in institutional repositories or in general-purpose repositories such as Zenodo.

Over the next six months, the Green Open Access Working Group will contact authors of recently published LIS literature to encourage them to self-archive as a way to maximize access to their work. We’re also going to contact LIS journal editors to share with them resources for migrating their journals to a fully open access model, and to ask for their help in making their authors aware of their self-archiving rights in the meantime.

In six months’ time, we’ll take a look at the numbers to see if more of the LIS literature is accessible to all. If so, we’ll scale up our efforts and work to liberate even more LIS research. If not, we’ll begin testing other approaches as previously recommended in our Environmental Scan.

Volunteers are welcome (and much needed) in this endeavor! We’ll provide the tools and support you need, and you can work at your own pace. Visit the Green Open Access Working Group page for more information and to volunteer.

State of Library Pipeline: April 2016 Wed, 06 Apr 2016 16:00:12 +0000 Continue reading State of Library Pipeline: April 2016]]> Library Pipeline put out a call for volunteers nine months ago. We heard from 68 volunteers at institutions of all types and set up Slack channels to facilitate collaboration. Our committee members have been working productively together ever since.

Library Pipeline is a platform for projects. We have prioritized four areas in which modest funding, paired with guidance and collaboration, should lead to significant improvements within libraries. These four areas make up four of our five subcommittees: Professional Development; Strategic Problem Solving; Innovation and Startups; and Publications. Our fifth subcommittee is Governance and Sustainability for Library Pipeline itself.

By working together, we can support structural changes for libraries and librarianship by providing opportunities, funding, and services that improve the library as an institution and librarianship as a profession. If you are interested in joining us, we are still looking for volunteers. The rest of this post will give you a sense of the committees’ work, their structure, and the progress we have made. We hope you share our excitement about libraries and their capacity to improve, and we hope you will join us in our work.

Professional Development

A few initiatives, notably the American Library Association’s Emerging Leaders and Spectrum Scholars programs, increase diversity and provide development opportunities for younger librarians. Library Pipeline will contribute to these efforts by offering scholarships, fellowships, and travel assistance that enable librarians and others who are working on behalf of libraries or LIS-related organizations to participate in projects, site visits, and other opportunities that shift the trajectory of their careers and the libraries or LIS-related organizations where they work. We will emphasize participation in cross-disciplinary projects or conferences that extend LIS in new directions and contribute to increased diversity among practitioners, along with enhanced well being, especially for the traditionally underrepresented, within the populations we serve.

You can follow their work, including their progress on an environmental scan, on the Library Pipeline Professional Development Google Doc.

Professional Development Co-Chairs: Ellie Collier and April Hathcock

Ellie Collier is a co-founder and editor of In the Library with the Lead Pipe and is thrilled to see Library Pipeline finally coming to fruition. She currently works as a Discovery Service Engineer for EBSCO. You can find her on Twitter @elliehearts.

April Hathcock is Scholarly Communications Librarian for NYU. In a past life, she was a corporate litigator but now enjoys educating her campus community on ownership and rights in the research lifecycle. She is excited to be a part of Library Pipeline and can be found on Twitter @AprilHathcock.

Strategic Problem Solving

Organized, diverse groups can solve problems that appear intractable if participants have insufficient time, resources, perspective, or influence. Library Pipeline supports collaborations that last a day, following the hack or camp model, or a year or two, like task forces or working groups. These collaborations bring together librarians, LIS faculty, and others who are committed to supporting libraries or library-focused organizations (including nonprofits, vendors, publishers, and consortia that work on behalf of libraries or library organizations). Gatherings can be in-person or online, and can be as basic as brainstorming solutions to a timely, significant issue or as directed as developing solutions to a specific problem.

This group is working on compiling a toolkit on strategic problem solving and strategic partnerships in and among libraries. Additional resources and ideas are welcome.

Strategic Problem Solving Co-Chairs: Josh Finnell and Sarah Morris

Joshua Finnell is the Scholarly Communications Librarian at Los Alamos National Laboratory and on the founding board of Make Santa Fe, a community makerspace opening in 2016. You can find him on Twitter @joshuafinnell.

Sarah Morris is the Co-Director of Nucleus Learning Network, an educational nonprofit that works to enhance innovative learning, with a focus on digital literacy and STEM, in Austin, Texas. Previously, Sarah was an instruction librarian at Loyola University Chicago. You can find her on Twitter @theinformaledu.

Innovation and Startups

We are inspired by incubators and accelerators and believe the library and information market, though mostly dormant, could support several dozen for-profit and nonprofit start-ups. We are committed to advising and either directly or indirectly funding library-related for-profit or nonprofit startups that have the potential to help libraries better serve their communities and constituents. We anticipate providing assistance with business plans and grant applications, as well as with networking, both in finding potential funders and partners, as well as developers, outreach specialists, technical writers, and others with domain expertise. We seek to gain insights on funding models and organizational management from successful LIS innovators, and to help disseminate those insights both to traditional organizations and startups.

You can follow this group’s work on the Library Pipeline Innovation and Startups Google Doc.

In addition, we encourage you to read its Innovation and Startups Environmental Scan. This documents authors are Joe Montibello, Robin Champieux, Lorena O’English, Rachel Frick, and Bonnie Tijerina.

Innovation and Startups Chair: Stacy Konkiel; Vice-Chair: Joe Montibello

Stacy Konkiel is the Outreach & Engagement Manager at Altmetric, a data science company that uncovers the attention that research receives online. She studies incentives systems in academia and informetrics, and has written and presented widely about altmetrics, Open Science, and library services. Previously, Stacy worked with teams at Impactstory, Indiana University, and PLOS.

Joe Montibello is the Library Systems Manager at Dartmouth College. He’s interested in the ways startup culture and entrepreneurial approaches can benefit the library community. You can find him on Twitter @firstweet.


Librarianship will be stronger when its practitioners have as much interest in documenting and serving our own field as we have in supporting the other disciplines and communities we serve. For that to happen, our professional literature must become more compelling, substantive, and easier to access. Library Pipeline will support existing open access journals, and restricted journals that wish to become open access, along with more traditional LIS publishers. We will also help promising writers and editors create new publications, publish position papers, and work with publications that are navigating the changing nature of communication. In addition, inspired by events like the Great Librarian Write-Out, we will host or promote events to encourage conversation about our field.

You can follow this group’s work on the Library Pipeline Publications Google Doc.

In addition, we encourage you to read the Library Pipeline Publications Environmental Scan, “The Future of Library Publishing (Draft).” Its authors are Marcus Banks, Lisa Gonzalez, and Stacy Konkiel.

Publications Chair: Marcus Banks

Governance and Sustainability

We are looking for co-chairs.