DLFrev1BL_notag_200Eric Luhrs, Head of the Library’s Digital Scholarship Services, delivered a presentation at this year’s Digital Library Federation conference in Atlanta this week. The DLF is the premiere venue for digital scholarship in libraries. The yearly conference brings together librarians, scholars, and digital experts to discuss the role of the library and librarians in the evolving landscape of digital scholarship and preservation. Luhrs presented on the panel “Catastrophic Success: The Challenges and Opportunities of Supporting Digital Scholarship at Liberal Arts Colleges” alongside of his colleagues Kelcy Shepherd (Amherst College), Laurie Allen (Haverford College), Gina Siesing (Bryn Mawr College) and
Jennifer Vinopal (New York University).

This panel, which emerged from a Liberal Arts College working group organized by Lafayette at last year’s DLF conference, has written a Manifesto on Digital Scholarship at Liberal Arts Colleges that articulates the members’ commitment to developing a strong foundation for digital methods and research no matter the size of the school or perceived limitations.

Luhrs highlighted the strengths of the DSS team in building customized research environments and the flexibility they have in their autonomy, while calling attention to the limitations of resources and time endemic to digital scholarship at small liberal arts colleges when compared to the collaboratories, scholars’  labs, and digital centers at high profile research universities.


DSS team members James Griffin, Eric Luhrs, and Thom Goodnow at DLF.

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DSS poster

Luhrs along with James Griffin, Digital Library Developer, and Thom Goodnow, Integrated Technologies Librarian, showcased these possibilities in a poster presentation describing how this small team has been able to streamline DSS’ project development processes.  By migrating from a multiplicity of platforms onto Islandora and adopting methodologies and workflows inspired by agile software development practices, the team can now develop a greater variety of digital tools and virtual research environments than previously possible. Their dedication and hard work has allowed the team to expand services and support innovation in scholarly research and digital scholarship across campus.

For more information on starting a digital project with DSS or applying for an internship opportunity contact us at digital@lafayette.edu, or call (610) 330-5796.