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The History of Higher Education in California: A Big Data Approach

Thursday, April 6
10am -11:30am
180 Doe Library

Zack BleemerZach Bleemer discusses how he used data science — thousands of computer-processed versions of annual registers, directories, and catalogs —  to reconstruct a near-complete database of all students, faculty, and courses at four-year universities in California in the first half of the 20th century, including the UC system. Visualizations of this database display the expansion of higher education into rural California communities, the rise and fall of various academic departments and disciplines, and the slow (and still-incomplete) transition towards egalitarian major selection.

Zach will also discuss his recent CSHE Working Paper, in which he uses additional digitized records to analyze the social impact of the early 20th century’s expansion of female high school science teachers and female doctors across rural California communities. He finds that newly-arrived female STEM professionals serve as important role models for young women in these rural communities, causing substantial increases in female college-going. However, these young women are no more likely to study STEM fields or become doctors themselves. He is currently extending these results to estimate ethnicity-based role model effects.
Zach Bleemer is a PhD student in Economics and Research Associate at UC Berkeley’s Center for Studies in Higher Education, where his research examines the educational and occupational decisions of young Americans. He has previously held senior research analyst positions at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and Mathematica Policy Research, and has published studies of student debt, parental coresidence, and university attendance. He is also currently a Visiting Scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and a Graduate Intern at the UC Office of the President.

Data service down at some campus libraries

Update at 3:37pm: The network outage has been resolved.

Update at 2:40pm: Internet is back at Doe Library.

Due to a campus network outage, data service has been unavailable at several libraries on Tuesday, March 21. The affected locations include:

Bancroft Library
Bioscience & Natural Resources Library
Doe Library
East Asian Library
Moffitt Library
Social Research Library

We will update this post as we learn more. Find the latest campus updates on the IST service status page.

Berkeley commits to accelerating universal open access, signs the OA2020 Expression of Interest


The University Library at UC Berkeley took a major step today in its commitment to achieving universal open access for scholarly journal literature by signing the OA2020 Expression of Interest, in collaboration with UC Davis and UC San Francisco.

OA2020 is an international movement, led by the Max Planck Digital Library in Munich, to convert the entire corpus of scholarly journal literature to open access by the year 2020. Open access promotes free, immediate access to research articles and the rights to use these articles to advance knowledge worldwide. OA2020 is a framework to achieve open access, and one solution for the rising costs of subscription journals and the need for reduced barriers in accessing and reusing information.

“Our mission, as scholars and educators, is to generate new knowledge for the benefit of the world,” explains Jeffrey MacKie-Mason, university librarian and professor of economics and information. “Much of the world can’t read our publications. They can’t get access because they can’t afford it. As the nation’s premier public research university, we need to be leaders in the effort to change that.”

University Librarian discusses open access

University Librarian Jeffrey MacKie-Mason, right, discusses open access with Ralf Schimmer, of the Max Planck Digital Library, in Berkeley in September. (Photo by Rachael Samberg for the University Library)

When an institution joins the OA2020 movement, it agrees to make a good faith effort to devise and implement practical strategies and actions for attaining universal open access for scholarly journal literature. OA2020 provides the flexibility for institutions to define for themselves how they will repurpose their journal subscription funds to support open access publishing.

The UC Berkeley Library has long been a pioneer in assisting authors with open access publishing, and was one of the first institutions in the nation to create a fund (the Berkeley Research Impact Initiative) that subsidizes article processing charges so that Berkeley scholars can publish for greater impact, and be read by policy-makers and researchers around the globe. Since 2008, the University Library has supported nearly 300 open access articles from more than 250 unique authors from nearly every division and numerous disciplines on campus.

“We are excited to continue connecting with UC Berkeley scholars on these issues,” explains MacKie-Mason. “As the Academic Senate itself acknowledged with its adoption of an open access policy in 2013, the movement has tremendous value to Berkeley authors. It improves the visibility and scholarly impact of their research and output, and facilitates their ability to conduct research because of reduced access and re-use restrictions.”

In developing the campus-specific OA2020 implementation strategies, MacKie-Mason emphasizes that the Library will undertake considerable outreach to engage UC Berkeley researchers and author communities on approaches to open access publishing.

The particular models that will form the basis for Berkeley’s transition to open access will then be articulated in an OA2020 campus roadmap that the Library is developing in consultation with key stakeholders. The Library has posted an early draft of this roadmap on an OA2020 project website created by the now four U.S. signatory campuses.

MacKie-Mason secured broad institutional support for the OA2020 Expression of Interest. Following a September 2016 meeting attended by representatives from the Max Planck Digital Library and various UC campuses, MacKie-Mason coordinated a multi-campus working group to evaluate and report on OA2020 implementation issues. The Faculty Senate Library Committee (LIBR) reviewed these materials and voted in favor of UC Berkeley’s participation, as did the Council of Deans led by now Chancellor-designate Carol Christ, who signed the Expression of Interest on behalf of the university.

“Open access will have a direct impact on Berkeley researchers,” Christ says. “It provides an enhanced ability for faculty to use new and emerging research and scholarship in the classroom. We are thrilled to participate in OA2020 and other open access efforts that provide pathways for promoting and sharing knowledge.”

About the University Library
The University Library at UC Berkeley is an internationally renowned research and teaching facility at the nation’s premier public university.  A highly diverse and intellectually rich environment, Berkeley serves a campus community of approximately 27,400 undergraduate students, 10,700 graduate students, and 1,600 faculty members. The Library comprises of 25 libraries, including the Doe/Moffitt Libraries, The Bancroft Library, the C. V. Starr East Asian Library, and numerous subject specialty libraries. With a collections budget of over $15 million, the Library offers extensive collections in all formats and robust services to connect users with the collections and build their research skills, while also working to help UC Berkeley scholars build research impact.

Library welcomes Berkeley’s 11th chancellor, Carol Christ


The University Library is excited to continue to work closely with the campus’ next chancellor, Carol Christ, in our efforts to inspire and empower future generations of Berkeley students. Christ currently serves as UC Berkeley’s interim executive vice chancellor and provost and is the former president of Smith College. She will be the first woman to serve as chancellor at Berkeley.

“I had never been in a place so deeply committed to widening the doors to educational opportunity,” Christ said in a message to campus on Thursday, after she was confirmed by the UC Board of Regents. She will begin her tenure on July 1. A celebration was held in the Morrison Library Thursday afternoon. “I’m bubbling over with excitement,” said University Librarian Jeffrey MacKie-Mason. “As my current boss, Carol has been an inspiration — I am in awe of her. Throughout her career, she has been a champion of the student experience, and will be a great leader for this great university.”

Chancellor-designate at Morrison Library

“I want your advice. I want your help. I want your intellectual energy and imagination,” Chancellor-designate Carol Christ said at the Morrison Library on Thursday. (Photo by Jay Boncodin for the University Library)

Chancellor-designate and University Librarian walking through the Library

Chancellor-designate Carol Christ with University Librarian Jeffrey MacKie-Mason in the Bancroft Library in September. (Photograph by Max Whittaker for the University Library)

Read more about Chancellor-designate Christ.

Seeking artists, photographers, data scientists, researchers and designers for Moffitt Library!

Moffitt Art Banner

Moffitt Library invites undergraduate students to submit their art or design works for the 2017-2018 academic year to be displayed on floors four and five. This opportunity is open to current undergraduates at UC Berkeley. Current pieces on display and full guidelines can be viewed online.We are interested in flat, wall-mounted works, including (but not limited to):

  • Paintings
  • Drawings
  • Photography
  • Data visualizations
  • Architectural designs
  • Research posters
  • Graphic designs

Submission deadline lis April 7, 2017. Decisions will be announced in early May. Please direct all questions and inquiries to Jean Ferguson, Learning and Research Communities Librarian, at jean.ferguson@berkeley.edu.

Apply here!

Write. Cite. Repeat.

Research management tools

Looking for an easy way to manage your research? The Library has you covered. We now offer premium access to three products — Overleaf, Mendeley, & ShareLaTeX — that make collaborative writing and citing in the engineering and physical sciences much easier. Sign up and learn more.

  • Overleaf is an online collaborative LaTeX editor with integrated real-time preview. It offers templates for arXiv and many journal publishers to help get you started, and it can also be linked to other services such as Mendeley, Git, and Plot.ly. A pro account (avaialable for free when you sign up with your Berkeley email) will provide up to 10GB storage space, 500 files per project, full project history, and the ability to save to Dropbox.
  • ShareLaTeX is also an online collaborative LaTeX editor. It too offers templates for arXiv and many journal publishers. With a premium account, you will get unlimited collaborators, full project history, and the ability to sync with Dropbox and Github.
  • Mendeley is a reference manager and academic social network that allows you to organize your references across multiple devices, automatically generate bibliographies, and share references with collaborators online. Your institutional account will provide up to 5GB personal library space, 20GB shared library space, 25 collaborators in private groups, and unlimited private groups.

Winter 2017, Fiat Lux Newsletter

The cover of Fiat Lux Winter 2017

The Winter 2017 issue of Fiat Lux, the Library’s newsletter, features stories about a project to categorize fake news stories; three unique digitization projects; and the completed renovation of Moffitt Library.

New Exhibit: Celebrating the Intellectual Legacy of Jeffrey Hadler (1968-2017)

Mount Merapi and Minangkabau long house by Edy Utama

February through September 2017
120 Doe Library

Throughout his life, Professor Jeffrey Hadler established himself as an accomplished scholar in Indonesian studies, authoring several books and a dozen articles. Over the last fifteen years, Professor Hadler selflessly dedicated his intellectual insight and guidance to the UC Berkeley academic community, enhancing the Library’s Southeast Asia collection. Additionally, he served in the following academic roles:

2009-2012: Southeast Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies
2011-2014: Chair, Center for Southeast Asia Studies
2011-2014: Southeast Asia Materials Project Executive Committee of the Center for Research Libraries
2014-2015: Department of South and Southeast Asian Studies
2016-2017: Academic Senate Library Committee

The display offers a selected collection of Professor Hadler’s works, course syllabi, and commencement photos with his graduate students, Iman Djalius (2012), Joseph Scalice and Kathleen Gutierrez (2014).

Photo credit: Mount Merapi and Minangkabau long house by Edy Utama.
Acknowledgements: Jenny Chiu, Iman Djalius, Vaughn Egge, Kathleen Gutierrez, Thiti Jamkajornkeiat, Quyen My Le, and Sarah Maxim.

Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon

Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-ThonArt+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon
Tuesday, March 21st
Moffitt 405

Wikimedia’s gender trouble is well-documented. While the reasons for the gender gap are up for debate, the effect is not: content is skewed by the lack of female participation. Let’s change that! Drop by the Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon, learn how to edit Wikipedia and make a few changes of your own!

People of all gender identities and expressions welcome. Bring a laptop (or use one of ours). No editing experience necessary, we’ll provide training and assistance. Drop-in for half an hour or stay for the whole afternoon. Food and drink will be provided.

Learn more!


Event: 19th-century Mormon maritime immigration

Icelandic immigrants on the ship Camoens, 1880s, National Museum of Iceland

The Bancroft Roundtable on March 16 will tell the captivating story of Mormon maritime immigration in the nineteenth century. Fred E. Woods, Professor of Church History and Doctrine at Brigham Young University, bases his account on hundreds of first-person immigrant accounts collected and dissected over the past two decades. The superior modus operandi used by the Latter-day Saints to bring European converts to America is described.

Event details
Bancroft Roundtable: “The Sail before the Trail or Have We Missed the Boat?”
Thursday, March 16, noon
Lewis-Latimer Room, The Faculty Club
Presented by Fred E. Woods, Professor of Church History and Doctrine, Brigham Young University

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