The talk on January 23 is the second in our Visualizing the World: A Maps and Geographic Information Systems Speaker Series.

Photo courtesy: Pixabay


Is it that time already? What happened to last week? Last month? This past year? Where does the time go nowadays?

Time is a precious commodity. Many folks are in the throes of planning, organizing and setting goals for 2018 or wrapping up as many activities and projects as possible before the end of 2017.

After achieving a particular goal though, it is hard for one to deny that good feeling of accomplishment. For some, it may even warrant some kind of reward – either big or small.

Speaking of time and accomplishment, cIRcle is excited to share some indelible highlights of UBC scholarly research materials archived during 2017. It’s now time to take a well-deserved break!


Year in Review – A look back at cIRcle in 2017:


UBC President’s Speeches and Writings

cIRcle was thrilled to archive the first round of UBC President Ono’s speeches and writings in 2017. Just in case you missed it, you can read the Library announcement here.

Future speeches and writings are set to arrive on a quarterly basis starting in 2018.


UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Two video presentations (courtesy of the UBC Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies) were recently added to the growing collection of 3,600 plus items:

Being a man today

Water: The life of a community


Missed our “In the Spotlight: UBC Faculty Research Collection” blog post? Read it here


UBC Community, Partners, and Alumni Publications

For ethnomusicologists and anyone curious about music and its social activity, watch “An Audience of One: The Private Music of the Chinese Literati

In 1926, the blind singer, Dou Wun, arrived in Hong Kong from Guangzhou at the age of sixteen. Watch “Hong Kong’s Folk Music and Local Culture: The Art of a Cantonese Blind Singer

Read a book chapter by Shirley Lew entitled, Creating a path to feminist leadership

Learn about the Asia Pacific Dispute Resolution (APDR) Project and view/download the first batch of items

Step back in time again to explore “Spectacular Opera Across Borders: Cantonese Opera Theaters in North America During the 1920s

Read a memoir entitled, “Labor of Love: A Memoir of Gertrude Richards Ladner 1879 to 1976”, about early BC nursing practice, the science of nursing as well as attire and living conditions.


UBC Lectures, Seminars, and Symposia

Starting in 2017, the “Grand Rounds” from the UBC School of Population and Public Health monthly seminar series arrived in cIRcle with more of them coming in 2018:


Can I borrow a microbiome?: Life-saving poop and the ethics of microbiome therapies

Is there a need for medically-prescribed heroin in the addiction treatment system?

More than just numbers: hearing from the real experts in the opioid crisis

Tackling Poverty and Socioeconomic Inequities


The first and second of the Ziegler lecture series from the UBC Department of Central, Eastern and Northern European Studies’ (courtesy of St. John’s College) also arrived in 2017.


How can you add your faculty research and more to cIRcle? Find out here


UBC Library and Archives

Since the next Science Literacy Week is a while away, you can listen to the 2017 round of Frequencies podcasts (courtesy of the UBC Okanagan Library) that was part of this year’s Science Literary Week. This particular series is one that “explores the connections between science and society: the implications of scientific research on our culture, how scientists communicate their ideas, and how our society responds”.

This collection has 674 items so far which includes datasets, interactive resources, moving images, sound, still images and text files.


Browse the newest additions received in 2017


The Banff International Research Station (BIRS)

A joint Canada-US-Mexico initiative that seeks to bring together people from a wide range of mathematical, scientific and industry backgrounds and to create a forum for the exchange of knowledge and methods between these specialists. The BIRS Workshop Lecture Videos are primary research data in the disciplines of mathematics, statistics and theoretical computer science.

With over 5,260 items to date, the Top Country Views & Downloads were from China, United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France, Republic of Korea, Italy, Russia, Japan, and Germany.


View the wide selection of previous and current videos and upcoming ones happening in 2018.


Vancouver Institute Lectures (VILs)

Established in 1916, the Vancouver Institute (VI) sponsors lectures of general public interest. It started recording the lectures in the form of audio and video tapes back in 1975 and were preserved with help by University Archives. Take a walk down memory lane to learn about the history of the Vancouver Institute via Eric Damer’s 1995 MA thesis entitled, Town and gown: the early history of the Vancouver Institute.


Watch recently added VILs here


 Graduate Research

This cIRcle collection showcases and preserves exemplary UBC graduate student research. All graduate student submissions have been reviewed and approved by a course instructor or research adviser. Browse the entire collection


What types of graduate research work can be added to cIRcle? Find out here


Undergraduate Research

This cIRcle collection aims to showcase and preserve UBC’s exemplary undergraduate research across all disciplines. All undergraduate student submissions have been reviewed and approved by a course instructor or research adviser. Explore this expanding collection


Who can add exemplary undergraduate work to cIRcle? Learn more




Above image is courtesy of Pixabay


In musical practice, there is an assortment of musical elements at “play”.


Just think. Real-time creative decision-making. Risk-taking. Collaboration.


So what happens when they all “play” together?


Improvisation! That is, musical improvisation.


“I’ll play it first and tell you what it’s called later.” – Miles Davis


The International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) is known as “a central source for the collection and dissemination of research on the social implications of improvisational practices”.


Founded as a partnered research institute from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) project, “Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice” (ICASP), IICSI has its own research team. It consists of 58 scholars, students, creative practitioners, and community partners representing 20 different academic institutions including the University of British Columbia (UBC) and over 30 community-based organizations.


Together, they are “creating a vibrant intellectual hub and a focal point for leading-edge research and critical inquiry in the field of improvisation studies”. Through this network comes the following benefits such as ‘new technologies and models for practice-based research, knowledge transfers, new research, student training, and development of policies, instruments, and technologies’ to list just a few.


IICSI has three main strategic research priorities: 1) Improvisation as Practice-Based Research, 2) Improvisation, Community Health, and Social Responsibility, and 3) Improvisation, Intermediality, and Experimental Technologies.


Below is a quick soupçon of the IICSI sample research-intensive questions under current exploration:


Sample Research Questions re: 1)

How do arts-based improvisatory practices themselves suggest new models of knowledge transfer?

How might these practices help us measure the impact of our research activities, and how might they enable a broader range of stakeholders to engage with these activities?


Sample Research Questions re: 2)

How do improvisational arts-based practices contribute to the development and flourishing of healthy communities?

How (and to what extent) do these practices help communities (particularly at-risk and aggrieved populations) produce new understandings of identity, history, memory, and the body?


Sample Research Questions re: 3)

How can new technologies help facilitate the ability of communities to improvise across time, space, and ability limitations?

How might intermedial co-creation develop new opportunities for mobilizing knowledge?


With more research questions arising faster than they can be probed, it is good to know that IICSI has created an online research library housing a range of items such as films, articles, think pieces, and interviews.


At UBC, cIRcle is not only helping to disseminate IICSI research and make it openly accessible, it is also archiving and preserving this unique musical form of scholarly research for future scholars, practitioners and the general public.


Explore the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI) Colloquium cIRcle collection via UBC Library’s Open Collections portal and stay tuned for more!


Are you a UBC researcher? Click here to add your research to cIRcle, UBC’s Digital Repository


The Irving K. Barber Learning Centre's 24/7 hours begin Sunday, December 3 (opening at 6 a.m.) and end Tuesday, December 19 (closing at 1 a.m.).


Above image is courtesy of Pixabay


At the University of British Columbia (UBC), the ‘highest calibre [of] research faculty and students’ create, innovate and inspire while they work and study at its two campuses located in Vancouver and in the Okanagan Valley. According to UBC 2016/17 figures, it ‘secures approximately $600 million in research funding each year with 199 companies spun off from UBC research; 1,326 research projects with industry partners; and 1,172 research contracts and agreements with government and non-profits’.


If you are looking for an openly accessible collection of such published and unpublished scholarly research by the UBC faculty community and its partners, take a moment to learn more about this notable one.


The UBC Faculty of Research and Publications collection in cIRcle, UBC’s Digital Repository showcases all types of content ranging from grant-funded research datasets to text files of preprint and postprint articles, case studies, technical reports, working papers, book reviews, conference proceedings and summaries to audio and video recording files to historical photographs of people, places, and objects.


With 3,521 items now and counting, the oldest item found in this collection was published back in 1929. More recently, one of the newest items found in cIRcle was a journal article published just this year by UBC authors from these interdisciplinary areas: Faculty of Arts, Library, Faculty of Medicine, School of Journalism and the School of Population and Public Health.


This collection covers a broad range of both historical and current thematic subjects such as air pollution, Canada, community environmental health, forest productivity, genocide, health human resources, HIV, homelessness, medical technology, monuments and memorials, prisoners, war, workplace health, and much more. So far, the latest top country views and downloads originate from the United States, Canada, China, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Republic of Korea, Australia, India, and the Netherlands.


Part of this unique collection is the Adam Jones Global Photo Archive created by UBC Okanagan professor Adam Jones, head of International Relations at UBC’s Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences. He is known as a “[g]lobetrotter, acclaimed author, and genocide expert” who has visited more than 103 countries to date.


One newly added item garnering media attention this month is a report written by UBC professor and Canadian Cancer Society Chair in Cancer Primary Prevention, Dr. Carolyn Gotay et al. She provides an update on the activities of the Breast Cancer Prevention & Risk Assessment Clinic in British Columbia. So far, it has received 1,369 views from the United States, Canada, France, Germany, United Kingdom, Ireland, Iran, Mexico, the Netherlands, and Japan.


Another part of this growing collection includes the Making Research Accessible Initiative (MRAi). Also known as the UBC Learning Exchange, MRAi is a community engagement initiative based in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. Did you know that the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre is a funding partner and contributor of MRAi? With new items added nearly everyday, there are currently over 150 faculty research articles and other community-sourced historical materials from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside which are now openly accessible in cIRcle via UBC Library’s Open Collections portal.



Are you a UBC researcher? Click here to add your research to cIRcle








News Release from Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC):


Research is at the heart of understanding the challenges and opportunities people face in areas such as education, immigration and technology. That’s why the Government of Canada continues to support the work of our country’s social scientists and humanities researchers. The evidence they produce informs policies that improve our understanding of each other and our communities.

To support their efforts, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science, announced today more than $265 million in funding for over 3,300 social sciences and humanities research projects across Canada.


The funding is being awarded through scholarships, fellowships, and grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), one of the three federal granting councils responsible for supporting researchers whose work helps fuel a stronger economy, healthy communities and a growing middle class.


Read the full press release


See the Award Recipients‘ list



Explore UBC’s Tri-Agency Open Access Policy here


Make your UBC research openly accessible here









Many thanks to guest blogger Ashlynn Prasad for contributing the below post! Ashlynn is a graduate student at UBC’s School School of Library, Archival and Information Studies and the curator of our new exhibition of photographs from the Uno Langmann Family Collection of B.C. Photographs.

When I first began perusing the Uno Langmann Family Collection of B.C. Photographs, which is available for public viewing in Rare Books and Special Collections in the Irving K. Barber Learning Center, and digital copies of which can be found online, I approached the photographs with the awareness that many of them were between 100 and 150 years old, and I therefore began the project with the expectation of finding photographic evidence of how much British Columbian scenery and landmarks have changed in the past century, after rapid advancements in technology as well as continuing urban development.

While I did find evidence of change, I was surprised to also find that many of the landmarks closely associated with British Columbia have varied very little in appearance in the past century. I got the sense while looking through the photographs that certain images, though they were taken up to 150 years ago in some cases, could have been taken a mere few days ago. With this in mind, I designed the exhibition in the spirit of a before-and-after, except that instead of juxtaposing new images with old images, I juxtaposed turn-of-the-century images with each other, showing on the one hand images which seem dated (from a modern observer’s perspective) and on the other hand images that look quite familiar. For a more traditional before-and-after comparison, please see below for contemporary versions of the scenes depicted in the exhibition.

Something else that I tried to keep in mind during the curation of this exhibition was the audience to which the photographs would likely be exposed while on display in Ike’s Café. On a personal note, I was born in the lower mainland and spent the earlier half of my life here, before moving to the United States and spending the latter half there. Because of this, I found myself tangentially familiar with a lot of the names I encountered during the curation of the exhibition, and in some instances the scenes in the images themselves were also intimately familiar to me. However, having been away for so long, I also had to do quite a bit of Google Maps searching of place names that would likely be extremely familiar to someone who had spent their entire life here.

I tried to keep in mind that the individuals coming through the café will have varying levels of familiarity with British Columbian landmarks – some will know them well, some will be experiencing them for the first time, and many will fall somewhere in between. I tried to curate an exhibition that could appeal to people at any position on the spectrum by showcasing landmarks that are generally quite well known, and which a large majority of people – even if they’re completely new to the area – will at least have heard of, such as Stanley Park or Fraser River. This way, the exhibition is ostensibly capable of drawing an emotional response from almost anyone, whether that’s the curiosity and nostalgia of seeing a turn-of-the-century version of a place one knows very well, or whether that’s a piqued interest in a place one has never seen before. For at least some of the photographs, I hope we can all enjoy the intrigue of noticing how much has changed in the last 100 years, and perhaps even more so, how much has not.

– Ashlynn Prasad, Exhibition Curator and MAS/MLIS Candidate at the University of British Columbia



Above image is courtesy of SPARC


In the News: UBC and Abroad



BCcampus, BCIT, SFU, UBC CTLT and UBC Library celebrate International Open Access Week 2017

A BC collaborative event, in celebration of this global movement now in its 10th year, will be happening at BCIT’s downtown campus location tonight.


The event theme, Tension and Risk in Open Scholarship: A Conversation: 2017-10-26, will address not only the “benefits and opportunities of open access but also a recognition that openness can sometimes create unintended consequences for individuals and communities”.


Learn more


Explore Open Access Week at UBC




Building a Sustainable Knowledge Commons – COAR (Confederation of Open Access Repositories)

COAR just released an animated infographic highlighting the five prerequisites for a sustainable knowledge commons


About COAR

An international association comprised of 100+ global members and partners (representing libraries, universities, research institutions, government funders and others) aims to build a sustainable, global knowledge commons based on a network of open access digital repositories.


Download the PDF




Examples of open access in action


What concrete benefits can be realized by making scholarly outputs openly available?


Check out SPARC’s new site highlighting 16 examples of the concrete benefits of making research open.


Learn more



A global coalition committed to making Open the default for research and education.




Open access: six myths to put to rest

What are the six most common misconceptions about open access?

Test your knowledge courtesy of Peter Suber (Director of the Harvard Office for Scholarly Communication and author of Open Access (MIT Press, 2012).



  • The only way to provide open access to peer-reviewed journal articles is to publish in open access journals
  • All or most open access journals charge publication fees
  • Most author-side fees are paid by the authors themselves
  • Publishing in a conventional journal closes the door on making the same work open access
  • Open access journals are intrinsically low in quality
  • Open access mandates infringe academic freedom


Uncover the facts here




Open Access at the Natural History Museum, London

In 2017, the Natural History Museum in London signed the International Open Data Accord (joining the growing number of museums) in publishing their collection databases and digital reproductions online. This undertaking is “part of its five-year plan to build a Museum for the future” by combining the expertise and skills from museum scientists, librarians, and archivists to create and digitize electronic records, making them openly accessible to all. So far, there are 3.8 million specimens already digitized and accessible via the Museum’s Data Portal comprised of the Museum’s research and collections data.


Learn more






Rare Books and Special Collections at UBC Library is delighted to announce a new exhibition: “An Unmatched Devotion”: A 50th Anniversary Exhibition for UBC’s Norman Colbeck Collection of Nineteenth-Century and Edwardian Poetry and Belles Lettres.
The talk on October 26 is the first in our Visualizing the World: A Maps and Geographic Information Systems Speaker Series

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

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