Current situation at SIL.org
The question has come around to: How does a company present its employees? This question is interesting in an SIL web context because there are no less than 5 places, and potentially more, where SIL staff are presented on the web.
- Staff is presented in the SIL corporate Bibliography
- Senior staff in key leadership positions are presented on a CV page called the Roster
- Staff are eligable for personal webspace on
- At a special SIL website like SIL-UND staff pages or at some other program where academics are teaching and staff
- A personal Website (not on
- In a professional network like LinkedIn
- JAARS Websites
- As part of SIL’s Lingua-Links pages
- As part of SIL’s NRSI working group.
Lets take a look a Steve Marlett’s profile. Steve is a well published linguistics consultant, former board member and a professor at SIL-UND and at CILTA. Here is a view of his SIL profiles or CVs.
- Staff Roster at CILTA
- SIL Roster
- SIL Capacitar / Training
- Ethnologue/SIL Bibliography listing
- SIL-UND Instructor Website
- Faculty listing at SIL-UND
- Steve Marlett On Linkedin
(With that many professional sites I could not keep up with them all… I would need google just to find them all.)
Other Department Websites in SIL
Enabling Others to talk about our staff
But SIL is not the only organization which talks about its staff. Wycliffe organizations like Wycliffe Canada do too. (This is because for the most part SIL Staff are not exclusively SIL Staff, they often are Staff of a Wycliffe organization, which through a series of contractual agreements, seconds employes to SIL as SIL Staff.[ref 1] ) So part of the equation for SIL’s web strategy is how does it present its people for its partners to talk about?
Another part of the equation is visual continuity. SIL currently has an option, as mentioned above, where staff can have personal websites on the SIL.org domain. How are these “sites” functions, that is how are they being used and what are they communicating. Is there visual continuity with these sites? Here are several examples:
- http://www.sil.org/~olsonk/ – Ken Olson
- http://www.sil.org/~willettt/ – Tom Willett
- http://www.sil.org/~simonsg/ – Gary Simons
The use of these sites is primarily falls with in the scope of an online CV. Though there are some other things going on like Ken Olson’s List of languages with descriptions in the Journal of the IPA.
Integration with Log-in profiles
What I did not mentioned above is that if SIL.org were to have an interactive website, where there would be a sign-in feature, so this leads to the the question: Would there also be a public profile for that person who logs in?
Could all of these public profiles be consolidated? If they were what would it look like? What do other professional institutions do to present their scholars and staff? I have blogged about this previously talking about how Selected Works™ & BePress a product from Berkley University Press meets this market niche.(View SelectedWorks of Eric Baković live.)
At other institutions
So, I have pulled together several screenshots from how other institutions allow or enable their professionals to have a public face.
Getting Buy-in from individuals
Bibapp is an application which can draw from Data in DSpace, an Open Source repository system. I am on the discussion list for Bibapp and one of the challenges for institutions which deploy this kind of technology is How does the institution get people to update their profiles? Often it is left to the department secretary to fill in the nitty-gritty. The answer to this problem is to deliver the profiles in such a manner so that the profiles actually provide a benefit to the people the profile is about. This encourages self-regulation and a greater degree of accuracy as the person is directly involved with the upkeep of the profile.
However, there are 4 things which should be considered at this point to be helpful to end users and the host institution:
- REAP[ref 2] Integration1
- A .txt presentation
- Machine Readability of data through hResume
- Reuse of Data through JSON
Starting with REAP integration, if a user wants to add a citation and a PDF download to their CV or profile then that integration with REAP should be built right into the CV editing form. This allows for quick, functional interactivity with both SIL’s institutional repository and with the individual’s CV.
By providing a .txt output of the CV data you allow someone to grab the CV data and quickly do something with it. Here is an example from my personally hosted website: My CV is as
http://hugh.thejourneyler.org/cv/ But I have a text feed at http://hugh.thejourneyler.org/cv/?feed=text and a JSON feed at http://hugh.thejourneyler.org/cv/?feed=json.
The real benefit to the host institution like SIL International is that it can provide a single editorial interface to CV’s and then use technology like JSON feeds to propagate that data to websites like CILTA.
The final item, hResume, is a microfomat that the users should never see but allow search engines and web browsers to detect that the data is a CV. I have previously done some work to match a typical linguist’s CV with the hResume format.
Sections of the Online CV
One important thing to view is that there are different sections of the online CV.
- Contact info
- Research interests
- Teaching experience
- Informal (workshops, etc.)
- by year
- by type
- Research and Dissertation/Thesis supervision
- Conference proceedings
- Journal Article
- Working paper
- Language Data (Language Documentation source Materials)
- Texts, readers and minor works in Indigenous languages
- Editor (works completed where this person was acting as editor)
- by language (sorted by ISO 639-3 code)
- by topic (a logical taxonomy of topics might be subjects from OLAC or terms from Project GOLD)
- ↑1 REAP is SIL International’s Institutional Repository, currently running on DSpace.
- Wycliffe Bible Translators UK. 7 February 2012. Wycliffe responds to accusations: Press Release from 9 February 2012. http://www.wycliffe.org.uk/docs/120207-pr-sonofgod.pdf. [Accessed: 2 June 2012] [PDF] ↩
- Jeremy Nordmoe. 2011. Introducing RAMP: an application for packaging metadata and resources offline for submission to an institutional repository. In Proceedings of Workshop on Language Documentation & Archiving 18 November 2011 at SOAS, London. Edited by: David Nathan. p. 27-32. [Preprint PDF] ↩