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UKSG, the organisation that connects the knowledge community, is delighted to announce the 2016 winner of its annual John Merriman Award, set up in recognition of the founder of UKSG and NASIG (the North American Serials Interest Group).

Shona Thoma, IRel Officer at the Irish Research eLibrary will receive funding from Award sponsor Taylor & Francis to attend the 2016 NASIG Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico with additional support from UKSG to attend the 2016 UKSG Conference in Bournemouth in April.

The Award gives members of UKSG and its sibling organisation NASIG the opportunity to broaden their knowledge of issues affecting libraries, and the chance to explore innovative ideas for the strategic development of libraries. It is open to members of UKSG and NASIG, who are in a functional position within a library or information service, with direct responsibility for managing information resources, or those in direct contact with library users, supporting them in the use of resources. Applicants were required to write a short paper on the topic 'What is the biggest challenge facing you in your current job and how, in an ideal world, would you address it?', and a paragraph describing what they hoped to achieve by attending the NASIG or UKSG conference. 

The Education Subcommittee of UKSG, which selects the winning applicant, used the following criteria in the decision-making process:

  • Evidence that applicant can demonstrate innovation & initiative
  • Evidence that attendance at the conference would facilitate networking and exchange of ideas
  • Evidence that the applicant would be able to apply their knowledge in the workplace
  • Evidence that the applicant would effectively disseminate ideas/knowledge gained from the conference

UKSG is grateful to its Merriman Award sponsor, Taylor & Francis, which makes a generous contribution toward the costs of travel, accommodation and associated expenses. Ian Bannerman, Managing Director at Taylor & Francis explains why the organisation sponsors the Award: "The UKSG and NASIG conferences provide invaluable learning and networking opportunities for librarians, publishers and agents. The connections made at such events are essential in times of change, so I'm pleased that by sponsoring the Merriman Award, Taylor & Francis can help maintain vital links within our community."

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About UKSG

UKSG exists to connect the information community and encourage the exchange of ideas on scholarly communication. It spans the wide range of interests and activities of the extended scholarly information community of librarians, publishers, intermediaries and technology vendors. In a dynamic environment, UKSG works to:

  • facilitate community integration, networking, discussion and exchange of ideas
  • improve members' knowledge of the scholarly information sector and support skills development
  • stimulate research and collaborative initiatives, encourage innovation and promote standards for good practice
  • disseminate news, information and publications, and raise awareness of services that support the scholarly information sector.

For more information, please browse this website or contact UKSG Marketing. Follow us on Twitter: @UKSG or via  lis-e-resources, a UKSG discussion list.  UKSG groups are also available on Facebook and LinkedIn