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Hey, You Got Business in My Engineering!: Collaborating to Support Entrepreneurship Research

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Engineering Librarian Collaborations in the Library, On Campus, and Beyond

Tagged Division

Engineering Libraries

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Paper Authors


Kelly Giles James Madison University Libraries

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Kelly Giles is the Applied Sciences Librarian at James Madison University. She serves as liaison librarian to the departments of Engineering, Computer Science, Geographic Science, Integrated Science and Technology, and Intelligence Analysis. She holds an MA in Library and Information Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a BA from Randolph-Macon Woman's College.

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Elizabeth Price James Madison University Libraries Orcid 16x16

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Elizabeth Price is the Business Librarian at James Madison University. She serves as the liaison to the departments of Accounting, Computer Information Systems, Economics, Finance and Business Law, Hospitality Management, Management, Marketing, and Sports Recreation Management. She has an MS in Library and Information Science from the University of Kentucky and a BS from Ohio University.

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This paper presents a case study of a mutually beneficial collaboration between an engineering librarian and a business librarian and provides suggestions for engineering librarians looking to form cross-disciplinary partnerships.

While engineering and business students have different information needs, topics such as patents, manufacturing standards, and industry research are relevant to both areas. Collaboration between the librarians serving these programs is important to best support users. Yet at large universities, these librarians might be working on different teams and even in different buildings. Such was the case at one university, where the engineering librarian and the business librarian, and their respective collections, were for many years based in libraries on opposite sides of campus.

In 2016, a newly hired business librarian was placed in an office in the campus STEM library and the engineering librarian was assigned as her peer mentor. A shared workspace and regular one-on-one meetings between the two librarians facilitated greater collaboration in reference, instruction, and collection development. Both librarians learned more about specialized resources with which they had been less familiar. For instance, the engineering librarian gained new expertise in market research and shared knowledge about patent searching with the business librarian. Their closer working relationship led to a partnership in support of entrepreneurship on campus. They developed and presented a faculty workshop on entrepreneurship research and are currently collaborating on a series of instructional videos on the subject.

Giles, K., & Price, E. (2020, June), Hey, You Got Business in My Engineering!: Collaborating to Support Entrepreneurship Research Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34724

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