BdREN and its Library connectivity and services

Ahasan, Dhaka, 4 July 2018

The University Grants Commission (UGC) of Bangladesh On behalf of the Ministry of Education (MoE), is currently implementing the Bangladesh Research and Education Network (BdREN) under the Higher Education Quality Enhancement Project (HEQEP) with assistance of the World Bank.  It Connects all universities, research institutions, libraries, laboratories, healthcare and agricultural institutions across the country and to support geographically dispersed academics, scientists and researchers with reliable access to high-end computing, simulation tools and datasets. BdREN will eventually be operated by a Non-profit Trust organization with a board of trustees consisting of representatives from the universities/user communities. BdREN offers different services like Digital Library Access, Cloud Computing, Training and Capacity Building, Unified Communications, Consultancy etc.

 Recent Event:

A two-day International Symposium from 2nd and 3rd July 2018 on “Tech-cultural Exchange Beyond CP: Cultural Transformation in Digital Ecosystem” was held at the Samson H. Chowdhury Centre, Dhaka Club. BdREN arranged the symposium under the auspices of Asia@Connect Project administered by Trans Eurasia Information Network*Corporation Centre (TEIN*CC), South Korea. Professor Abdul Mannan, Chairman, University Grants Commission of Bangladesh, opened the symposium as the chief guest with Professor Dr Md. Akhtar Hossain, Member, UGC, in the chair. AKM Habibur Rahman, Chief Executive Officer of Bangladesh Research and Education Network (BdREN), delivered the welcome address at the inaugural ceremony of the symposium on 2nd July 2018.
Faridah Noor Mohd Noor, chair of the eCulture Working Group of Asia Pacific Advanced Network (APAN), gave an introduction to the keynote speaker. Daeyoung Kim, former professor of Chungnam National University, spoke on the Experiences and challenges of cyber performance at the inaugural session of the symposium.
In the 2nd session of the day three presentations on ‘Implementing experience of cyber performance in Vietnam’, ‘Implementing experience of cyber performance in India and some new idea for cyber performance’, and ‘Mediatization of culture’ were made respectively by Nguyen Hong, Director of the Advanced Science and Technology Information Network Centre of Vietnam, Hari Krishna Atluri, Assistant Director of EARNET, India and Dr. ASM Asaduzzaman, Associate Professor of the Department of Mass Communication and Journalism, Dhaka University. Faridah Noor Mohd Noor, chair of the eCulture Working Group of Asia Pacific Advanced Network (APAN), was the moderator of this session. IT professionals, faculty members of public and private universities and cultural activist are attending the symposium.

Day 2 (July 3 2018)

Alain Baumann, a French composer, media artist, programmer and developer of innovative audiovisual instruments, is delivering a presentation on “When art meets network: new formats for the performing arts” at the second day.

2nd session of the second day, the session was moderated by Boncheol Goo, Special Researcher, Institute for High Technology in Jelu National University, South Korea and also the Co-Chair of APAN e-Culture Working Group. Boncheol Goo also delivered a presentation on ‘Network delay as a new media’ in the session. Another presentation in the session was delivered by Alain Baumann, a French composer, media artist, programmer and developer of innovative audiovisual instruments, on “When art meets network: new formats for the performing arts”. Rosa Sánchez, a multidisciplinary and multi-media artist & choreographer of Spain made the last presentation in the session on “Drawing lines for a cooperative world”.

The and last session of the symposium was on “Future of cyber performance” which was moderated by the Nguyen Hong Van, Director of the Advance Science and Technology Information Network Centre of Vietnam. Faridah Noor Mohd Noor, chair of the e Culture Working Group of Asia Pacific Advanced Network (APAN), delivered a presentation on “Cyber Performances – Challenges and Opportunities for the Future” while AKM Habibur Rahman, Chief Executive Officer of Bangladesh Research and Education Network made a presentation on “Sustainability of Networked Performance” in the session. Bhushan Raj Shrestha, founder chairman of Nepal Research and Education Network delivered a presentation on Cyber-performance – A New Perspective for Cultural Transformation in the session.

The programme was ended with a fascinating cultural show followed by a dinner at the said event. Professor Abdul Mannan, Chairman, University Grants Commission of Bangladesh, Professor Dr Md. Akhtar Hossain and Professor Dr Dil Afroza Begum, Members, UGC, officials and consultants of UGC and HEQEP joined the event along with delegates from different parts of the world.

The Librarian Times Webinar: Call For Presenters

NextGen: LIS learning innovation and exchanging knowledge

Call For Presenters

We are pleased to invite you to conduct a live webinar presentation as a presenter. The Librarian Times is hosting a series of live webinars for Bangladeshi Library and Information professionals, academics, researchers and students. It would be such a huge privilege to have you at this special webinar series.

 

The expected presenters:

 

 

Mahtab U Ahmad

Learning Resource Center Manager, Strayer University, USA

Title: How to conduct a Reference Interview? The role of the reference librarian in higher studies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr Md. Anwarul Islam

University Librarian, Sher-e Bangla Agriculture University and

General Secretary, Library Association Bangladesh (LAB)

Title: Wikipedia: How to create contents? Opportunities for Librarians

 

 

 

 

Jakaria Rahman, PhD

Bibliometric Analyst, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden

Title: i) Bibliometics Analyst as a profession for ISLM graduates;

ii) Higher study in abroad for ISLM graduates: challenges and opportunities

iii) Open access, Open research data, Open citations: how library professionals contribute.

 

 

Abdullah al-Modabber
Assistant Librarian, South Asian University
New Delhi, India

Title: KOHA Installation 

 

Exploring expert: networking and making professional relationship:

 

One of the aims of the webinar series is about exploring the hidden Bangladeshi LIS talents who are working around the world and representing Bangladeshi LIS sectors.

We believe the live presentation will be inspiring professionals particularly to the new LIS generation from different organizations including the universities. The border aim is to exchange idea among the fellow library professionals in Bangladesh.

Technology:

We will be using the zoom webinar technology: https://zoom.us/webinar

Roles In A Webinar:

https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/360000252726-Roles-in-a-Webinar

 

Who will be the host?

Editor, The Librarian Times

Facebook live?

The webinar also will be connecting with Facebook Live.

Participant registration, audience management, Q&A, polling, voting, Facebook live?

The host will organise everything for you.

 

As the presenter, the audience will look forward to hearing about your experience, knowledge on the particular topic. A total of 40 minutes including questions and answers session would be perfect. Everyone is certainly thrilled and excited to hear your thoughts on this webinar presentation as we are going to implement the zoom technology for the first time in LIS sector in Bangladesh.

Interested presenters are requested to email the following information to editor@thelibrariantimes.com no later than July 30, 2018.

  1. A short biography of you (150 -170 Words)
  2. Title of presentation and learning outcomes
  3. Your suitable time to present (Please consider Bangladeshi time)

Training on Basic ICT Training for Librarian launched at BANBEIS, Dhaka

Ahasan, Dhaka, 30 June 2018

 

Bangladesh Bureau of Educational Information and Statistics (BANBEIS) organized a 14 days long basic ICT (Information and Communication Technology) training for Librarian which was started on 24 June 2018 and scheduled to be completed on 07 July 2018. Total eighty participants clustering of 20 participants of each group namely 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th batch are receiving this training at Bangladesh Korea ICT Training Centre for education(BKITCE), BANBEIS, Polashi, Dhaka. Training participants are from different college and school Librarians as well as Assistant Librarians those who have no training experiences earlier. Several persons are participating from the different Ministries of Bangladesh. Expertise staff of Bangladesh Computer Council have been working as the facilitators in this training. Out of fourteen days LAB based training two days are allocated for field visit for getting practical and real-life experience. Each of the participants will be receiving Tk. 4840 as an honorarium.

To make the mentioned event successful, BANBEIS authority organized an inaugural session on 24 June 2018 at their auditorium. Chief Guest of the programme was Dr Oruna Biswas, Additional Secretary (Administration and Finance), Secondary and Higher Secondary Division, Ministry of Education while Mr Md. Shamsul Alam, Chief, Bureau of Statistics chaired the session.

Mr Md. Abu Taher Khan, Sr. Systems Analyst has been working as training coordinator.

IFLA WLIC Congress attendance grant 2018, Dil Ruksana Basunia awarded

Ahasan and Mukta, Dhaka, 30 June 2018

 

Dil Ruksana Basunia, Deputy Librarian, University of Chittagong has been awarded for the 2018 recipients of the Academic & Research Libraries Attendance Grants of The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) to attend World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) from 24-30 August 2018 in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. Dil Ruksana will attend the IFLA Congress and will present paper and also will take part in different discussion groups. Also will meet library professionals around the world. Transform libraries, transform societies

It is mentioning that Dil Ruksana Basunia has been working Corresponding  Member at Asia and Oceania Section of IFLA since 2015.

Sage and ExLibris are the sponsors for this category of grant of the incumbent WLIC.

Other Grant winners to attend IFLA Congress in KL in August 2018 are:

Asia/Pacific

Ms Attya Shahid – National University of Computers and Emerging Sciences, Pakistan

Africa: 

Ms Adaora Chigozie Obuezie – Anambra State College of Health Technology, Obosi, Anambra State, Nigeria

Ms Kelemwork Agafari Kassahun/Madibela – Botho University, Botswana

The main source of the above information: https://www.ifla.org/node/52198

National University and The Librarian Times Joint Seminar: Media coverage

The event news has got media coverage in 25 national dailies till 30 June 2018. Indeed this is a good sign for library professionals towards positive changes.

 

 

University of Hull, UK team visited North South University Library

Tanveer,NSU, Dhaka, 30 June 2018

Lynne Barrow, Associate Dean (International), University of Hull, the UK with her team visited North South University Library yesterday (25 June 2018) accompanied by Dr Katherine Li, Director, Office of External Affairs, NSU. The purpose of the visit was to explore the NSU Library overall facilities, resources, access to information, research support, library space, the effect of services etc. prior to signing MOU. University Librarian, Dr Md. Zahid Hossain Shoeb outlined the strength and facilities of NSU Library mentioning the effective use of Main Study Hall, Cyber Center, Reference Section, Researchers Area, Archival Section, Quiet Study Area, General Study Area, Faculty Corner etc. which offering a calm, quiet, neutral space, where NSU Library users can access resources and information for work, research or leisure. Unlike these areas, students have a great affinity to the large Study Hall due to group discussion facilities.

Dr Zahid also discoursed that NSU Library is the pioneer of using state-of-the-art RFID technology, e-resource subscription, use of library research tools and training programme for the faculty members and the graduate as well undergrad students. The visitors appreciated the efforts of NSU Library. Sr. Asst Librarian, Mr MM Shoeb, Assistant Librarian, Md. Abdul Hakim, Library officer Tanveer Ahsanofficers other and support staff were also present during this visit.

Eid reunion held at Chattogram

Ahasan, Dhaka, 30 June 2018

 

Post Graduate Diploma of Library and Information Science continued students and alumni namely PGDLIS student forum of IIUC (International Islamic University Chittagong) organized an Eid reunion on 22 June 2018 at National Public School, Bahaddarhat, Chattogram. Mr Mohammad Jashim Uddin, Chattogram District Education Officer was the Chief Guest while Mr Anwar Hossain Nuri, Divisional Counsellor, Library Association of Bangladesh (LAB) attended the event as the special Guest.

 

BoiBodol forum has established a Library at Rajshahi

BoiBodol(Book Exchange), a social action project which roughly worked to exchange books between university students have now started to create small-scale libraries for young kids. The project has launched a pilot library at Dawatul Islam Girls Orphanage. It is situated at Dharampur, Binodpur, Rajshahi. A retired banker and his wife take care of the children as it is a family initiative, but local residents are also helping a lot for its operation.

BoiBodol initiated collecting books for the library in late May and collected books till 5th of June. In spite of being a small initiative and for lack of professional advertisement, 58 books and 2000 BDT were collected. Many students, job holders and even housewives also donated books for the kids. They not only gave away the books, as per the policy of the library project, they have also written beautiful quotes under the cover page of the books so that the kids could enjoy it more.

The volunteers, under the supervision of Nafisa Hasan, the co-founder of the project then enlisted the books in BoiBodol database. On 7th June, Saifullah Mahfuz, the founder of BoiBodol and Amimul Ehsan, a volunteer on the project started their journey to Rajshahi. They reached at Rajshahi in the next day morning and Miftahul Jannat Mouni, another volunteer for the project from Rajshahi hosted them before preparing for the event.

When the team consisted of Saifullah, Amim, Mouni reached the orphanage, Syeda Safika, representative of the orphanage and a university admission seeker, welcomed the team. The kids were very happy to have visitors. Rather than going to the place merely to give away the books, a few segments were arranged to enrich the reading habit of the children. At first, Saifullah talked about what kind of books have been brought to the orphanage. Then Amimul Ehsan shared his experience as a person who had no affiliation with books beyond the syllabus. He shared the story of struggle he had to go through as he had a little knowledge over everything before starting to read books from different genres. Then Miftahul Jannat had taken a session on why extracurricular activities, such as painting, reading story books etc can help a student to become more attentive to his/her studies.

A few fun games were also played in between the session. The most popular one was remembering as many as names of the books given by the BoiBodol team.

The orphans were overjoyed with this small but unique initiative. The owners of the orphanage also welcomed the team warmly. But they are also facing financial hardship as they are currently buying an addition portion of land for the orphanage so that they can accommodate a lot more orphans at their place, established their own school and for a playground. For this, they need 20 lakh BDT. Financial aid is hence, welcomed.

It was a great experience for the BoiBodol team as they never thought they would get this much response from the donors. They are looking forward to creating more libraries around the country.

We appreciate and congratulate the new initiative of Saifullah Mahfuz Orko, Founder of BoiBodol Concept and his dynamic team members.

The National University and The Librarian Times Joint Seminar held

30 June, 2018

 

The National University and The Librarian Times Joint Seminar on “Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing: Enriching LIS Education, Research and Professions in Bangladesh” was held on June 27, 2018, at Govt. Teacher Training Colleges Auditorium, Dhaka

This seminar was jointly hosted by National University Bangladesh and The Librarian times. Two speakers from the Library and Information specialist backgrounds gave the presentation on their expertise.

The event was divided into two different sections. The first session presentation titled “Library and Information Science Education: The USA Perspective” conducted by Dr Hasan Zamir, Lecturer, School of Information Studies, Dominican University, USA. This session covered LIS education system, research, library services, professional affiliation, and library and information job perspective in the USA. It presentation particularly focused on the admission process in LIS schools, requirements and funding opportunities for the students who want to go to the USA for higher studies. The audiences were able to ask questions of the presenter on various topics about the LIS sectors.

The second session was conducted by Dr Anwarul Islam, Associate Professor, Department of Information Science & Library Management, University of Dhaka. His presentation titled “Potential South Asia (SA) Chapter in ASIS&T: Hope for LIS Communities in Bangladesh.” The presenter discussed on how ASIS&T is playing a significant role for career development, edits, publishes and disseminates publications concerning research and development, networking opportunities through prominent professors, helping to facilitate for possible collaboration and to find research supervisors. The audiences were able to ask questions of the presenter on various topics to know what is the benefit of being a member of ASIS&T, how to make network with the world famous researchers, recruiting process in university, Chapters role, Special Interest Group (SIG), how to get awards, possible funding for attending conferences and others.

 

One of the aims of the event was to have a meeting point of the LIS academics, professionals, researchers and students where everyone had the opportunity to get to know about Dr Zamir’s work in the USA and inspire some networking and socializing with other professionals from different organizations. The border aim was to share knowledge among the fellow library professionals in Bangladesh.

The session was chaired by Professor Dr Nasiruddin Mitul, Dean, National University Bangladesh. Professor Kaniz Sayeda Bente Sabah, Principal, Govt. Teachers Training College, Dhaka delivered her inaugural speech at the event while Mamtaj Sahanara, Vice-Principal Govt. Teachers Training College, Dhaka attended the event as the special guest. Dr Dilara Begum, Associate Professor and Chairperson Department of Information Studies and Library Management & Librarian (Acting) East West University attended in the session as an expert. Mr Prodip Roy, founder and editor of The Librarian Times, greeted the participants via online from Australia.

The Two- hours presentation including questions answers and expert opinions about the session made the event successful.

Evaluation

A post-seminar survey was circulated to the participants shortly after the conclusion of the event. The reactions and comments are very positive. We requested participants to leave their feedback on the event with a number of questions e.g., How likely are they to attend one of our events in the future? How likely are they to recommend events to a friend? Did the seminar meet its objectives?

And the result we have received is 100% positive.

Total number of registration: 149

Total number of attendees: 80

Overview: Attendance and Locations

The location of the event was convenient for all. Overall participants were happy with the choice of venues.

Overview: Content

Attendees were in general very happy with to presentation topic and the presenters’ expertise.

Further Recommendation:

Technology:

The organisers need to consider how they will meet technology needs (e.g., live video, live interactive tools, availability)

Invitation:

Information on Invitation to participate in the Seminar organised by The Librarian Times and NU was not disseminated properly. It could have been more organised to make the presence of the professionals many more in the seminar. Many interested participants missed the event.

Refreshments:

Attendees recommended improving the quality and quantity of the food at future events.

Topics to cover at the future seminar:

The participants recommended for future conferences are but not limited to, Open Access movement, Digital Library software for building Institutional Repository (IR), How to apply successfully in International Events like IFLA, OpenCon.

Media coverage:

The event news has got media coverage in 25 national dailies till 30 June 2018. Indeed this is a good sign for library professionals towards positive changes.

The media links are here

Overall, the seminar proved to be a very worthwhile experience, not just for the organisers, but also for the participants.

An Exclusive Interview with Dr Hasan Zamir

Hasan Zamir completed his PhD in Library and Information Science from the University of South Carolina in 2017. His dissertation focused on diffusion, sentiment, and network analysis of a social media movement, and his research interests revolve around social media analytics, big data, and text mining. He has taught information retrieval, information architecture, computer-mediated communication, and user experiences at the University of South Carolina at both the undergraduate and graduate level.  At Dominican, he teaches Data Science, Information Technology, Health Informatics, and Web Designing courses both at graduate and undergraduate level. Zamir is active in leadership roles in various professional organisations including the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIST) and the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE). Apart from teaching and supporting the expansion of Informatics programs at Dominican, he aims to explore data for social good.

 

Dr Hasan Zamir

Dr Zamir is now in Bangladesh for a short visit. The librarian Times was a keen interested in taking an interview to listen to history about his journey from Bangladesh to the United States of America. This interview was conducted by one of TLT’s Contributing Editors Ms Syeda Mukta Begum.

 

But I never gave up, although nearly two years from 2009 to 2011 I spent a very frustrating time of my life. I did not have a full-time job even after trying multiple times in various multinational companies.”

 

TLT: Could you please tell us your story about why, how and when did you decide to go to the United States of America to start your new journey with your wife?

Mr Hassan Zamir: Both my wife, Mir Parvin Pushan, and I completed our Honors and Master’s degree from the Information Science and Library Management department of the University of Dhaka in 2008 and 2009 respectively. Although we were the batch of 2003, due to the then two years session gridlock our exams were prolonged to later dates from 2006 to 2008 and 2007 to 2009. Pushan, my wife, got a job in Robi Telecommunications right before our final exams completed in 2009. I intended to apply for a faculty position in our department. Unfortunately, there was no job opening nearly for two years in our department. In the meantime, I engaged myself with part-time works and applications for scholarships. I started to explore the prestigious Commonwealth Scholarship and was selected for interviews twice. Both of those experiences were bitter for me as the interviewers had very upsetting views about the library professionals and did not even care to listen to my answers for a single minute. “But I never gave up, although nearly two years from 2009 to 2011 I spent a very frustrating time of my life. I did not have a full-time job even after trying multiple times in various multinational companies.” The HR officers of these companies argued that I would join the Dhaka University department whenever there would be faculty openings. I also tried the BCS route, but I went through another bitter experience with it, too! Then I started to explore options for higher studies abroad. My first target was England and Australia. I began IELTS preparations for it. During that time, I visited the American Center to know about the higher studies options in the USA. I met Syed Robiul Bashar Bhai for the first time. Luckily, he told me about a student travel grant offered by the US Department of the State and introduced me to the Education USA officer, Arefin Jahan. Both of these two persons guided me with every step, especially with GRE and TOEFL preparations. They filled my mind with hopes. I researched the US LIS universities and started the applications and secured admissions in few universities. However, based on the research interests and, most importantly, the amount of funding I received, I chose the University of South Carolina for the PhD program. I started my PhD in August of 2011 under the supervision of my mentor Dr Samantha Hastings. In the meantime, Pushan quitted her lucrative job and joined me in South Carolina. She started Master’s in Library and Information Science and achieved the most outstanding student achievement award from the School of Library and Information Science of the University of South Carolina.

“I started my PhD in August of 2011 under the supervision of my mentor Dr Samantha Hastings.”

 

TLT: What made you choose to select PhD topic?

Mr Hassan Zamir: US education opened my eyes to the actual value of information in society. My professors at the University of South Carolina introduced us to various issues of information science. Due to the inception of social media, the role of information is now more important for making better decisions and understanding events. In 2013, there was Shahbag Movement and Bangladeshis across the globe used social media to express opinions. I followed its progression and collected data from Twitter. It is essential to know how information propagates, who controls its ownership, and about the formation of online networks during disruptive moments. After online social movements like “Arab Spring” and “Green Revolution”, I decided that the world should know about the Bangladeshi movement.

 

“It contributes to the existing knowledge of information diffusion, network analysis and social movement by analysing it from the perspectives of social media.”

 

TLT: Would you please share us about your PhD theoretical and practical outcomes? What is your contribution to the existing knowledge?

Mr Hassan Zamir: Theoretically, my PhD research informs about information propagation patterns, network formation, and sentiment patterns in social media. Practically, it exhibits how to compute information diffusion, networks, and analyse sentiments particularly during Twitter movements. It contributes to the existing knowledge of information diffusion, network analysis and social movement by analysing it from the perspectives of social media.

 

TLT: When did you join the Dominican University as an academic? Would you please share about which the course you are teaching over there?

Mr Hassan Zamir: I joined the iSchool of the Dominican University as a faculty in 2017 right after my PhD completion. Currently, I am teaching Data Science, Information Technology, Health Informatics, Web Designing, and Human-Computer Interactions courses. I teach both undergraduate and graduate on-campus and online courses.

TLT: You have studied in Information Science and Library Management at the University of Dhaka. Now you are teaching students in the USA. What are the differences between Bangladeshi and the USA learning and teaching systems in LIS courses?   

 

“In the USA, students get more opportunities to research, collaborate with faculty and peers, and lead projects.”

Mr Hassan Zamir: There are the number of differences between the US education and what we have learned in Bangladesh. In the USA, students get more opportunities to research, collaborate with faculty and peers, and lead projects. They are exposed to both the conceptual and practical aspects of studies. Faculty always try to bring in new ideas and nurture the inquisitive minds. They never disrespect students’ abilities and always motivate students for better outcomes. What I especially enjoyed is the experience of becoming an independent researcher. My professors at the University of South Carolina trained and guided me how to lead research projects, write grants, organise workshops and seminars. First, they tag us with their existing projects. We apply that learning later on. One more unique characteristic of the US education and overall US culture is diversity. They value talent highly and rarely judge anyone by her/his racial or cultural backgrounds. If someone has the passion for any areas of work and has the right skill to do it, they allow that person do it and provide all kinds of facilities needed to complete those works. Anyone can become successful with the right attitude about life.

 

TLT: What are the challenges you faced when you started your new journey in the USA? Please share something about professional experience or training experience gathered from the USA.

 

“I have joined various professional associations and took charge of leadership roles. Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIST) and Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE) are my frequent Moreover; I attended many conferences, workshops, seminars for presentations. These helped me to develop my professional network, which is immensely valuable in the US job market.”

 

Mr Hassan Zamir: Of course, living thousands of miles away from the family members is always mentally challenging. Cultural differences on top of language barrier posed many initial challenges for me. But I learned from those and tried to adopt the diversity in life. I was fortunate enough that South Carolina had vibrant and welcoming student and senior Bangladeshi community, who offer supports like family members. The University of South Carolina has a dedicated international students service office just like any other US universities. This office provided immigration to academic and cultural to work – all kinds of support we need during our stay in the USA. Degree-wise, PhD is professional training in dealing with services, leadership, research and teaching simultaneously. I am profoundly thankful to my directors and PhD supervisors Dr Samantha Hastings and Dr David Lankes for their continuous support. Although the USA has a stronger economy, our PhD scholarships and assistantships came from Government funds. Historically all kinds of Government funds are uncertain and depend on the availability of budgets. My directors, especially Professor Samantha Hastings, worked hard for us to make sure we get paid every month. Our professors always sent us to attend national and international conferences. I have joined various professional associations and took charge of leadership roles. Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIST) and Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE) are my frequent Moreover; I attended many conferences, workshops, seminars for presentations. These helped me to develop my professional network, which is immensely valuable in the US job market. Communications with and recommendations from right contact always give a leap in securing a dream job. My research interest strongly revolves around social media. School of Library and Information Science trained me with both advanced qualitative and quantitative research skills. My PhD dissertation needed more sophisticated techniques for data analysis for example sentiment analysis, social network analysis, which I learned by exploring various online education platforms, online computing courses, and seeking help from the Computer Science professors. Following innovations of research teams of the tech-giants like Google, IBM, Microsoft increased my knowledge on how to design my PhD research.

 

TLT: Would you like to share something for the library professionals in Bangladesh compared to the USA library professionals?

Mr Hassan Zamir: in general, I have observed sheer responsibility and commitment in the US work environments. Every person performs her/his duties responsibly. They are always committed to their responsibilities and maintain work schedules rigorously. These simple characteristics make the differences and increase work efficiencies. US LIS professionals are dedicated readers. They have fascinations of reading various kinds of materials, which give them expertise in specific areas so that they can provide excellent information services to their patrons. US LIS education prepares them to become work-ready due to educational policies set by the American Library Association (ALA). Many libraries, archives, museums require ALA-accredited degree to secure a job in those institutions. So, almost all of the LIS educational institutions offer ALA-accredited programs. The ALA-standard has worldwide recognition and acceptance.

 

 

TLT: How do LIS professionals can develop themselves to provide innovative service to the library users in Bangladesh? What could they follow from the USA LIS professionals’ to provide better library services?

 

“Our LIS professionals must have the mentality to preserve the correct history regardless of individual belief and background.”

 

Mr Hassan Zamir: Understanding the information needs of the patrons accurately is a must-have skill for the LIS professionals. So, the LIS professionals must have appropriate skills to serve their patrons. Due to the advancement of internet and the tech-innovations information is now available at our fingertips. Therefore, the LIS professionals in Bangladesh must adopt new technology to serve the information needs. We must look for new ventures to meet the information needs of the wider population. Mere outdated cataloguing and abstracting services will not be sufficient. Digitization of cultural heritage objects is always an exciting area to explore. Typically, LIS professionals have the right skills and knowledge to preserve the culture and civilisation of a country. Our LIS professionals must have the mentality to preserve the correct history regardless of individual belief and background.

TLT: What is your contribution towards Bangladesh LIS sectors?

 

“I do have a keen interest in contributing in Bangladesh LIS sector. I always welcome any opportunity for research or project collaborations with any Bangladeshi LIS scholar and expert. Currently, I am the editor of the World Libraries, a journal for the global LIS sector. I am expecting many Bangladeshi scholars will be interested in submitting their research in this journal.”

 

Mr Hassan Zamir: So far, my contribution to the LIS sector in Bangladesh is limited within research. I had an internship opportunity at the Dhaka British Council Resource Centre after my graduation from Dhaka University. Later I started my PhD and got involved with research and higher studies. However, I do have a keen interest in contributing in Bangladesh LIS sector. I always welcome any opportunity for research or project collaborations with any Bangladeshi LIS scholar and expert. Currently, I am the editor of the World Libraries, a journal for the global LIS sector. I am expecting many Bangladeshi scholars will be interested in submitting their research in this journal. I believe this will provide international exposure to the Bangladeshi LIS research. I always represent Bangladesh at various international professional LIS associations like ASIST, ALISE, iSchools. My primary aim is to promote Bangladesh LIS sector internationally. I am interested in serving on the PhD committees of any Bangladeshi LIS student.

 

TLT: What opportunities are there for Bangladeshi LIS students to participate in the USA Universities, both as a research student and as a general student by coursework? Would you please share information about scholarship, training and others opportunities for the LIS students and LIS professionals through TLT?

 

 

“Bangladeshi scholars have many opportunities in the US universities. They can go for PhDs and Masters. However, PhD will be the best option for many students.”

 

Mr Hassan Zamir: the USA is known as the land of opportunity. Historically this country has a reputation for equal opportunity. Everyone with right credentials and hard-working mentality can achieve anything they want. Bangladeshi scholars have many opportunities in the US universities. They can go for PhDs and Masters. However, PhD will be the best option for many students. Students can get partial to full scholarships in PhD. Also, students with Bachelor degree can directly apply for a PhD program in the US universities. Students should start early for admission preparation. Higher scores in TOEFL, GRE, a proper statement of purpose letter, CV, strong recommendation letters are vital to secure admission in the US universities. Students should communicate with the US professors and explore avenues to work with them. PhD students can get a full tuition waiver and a salary for their services in research and/or teaching. In comparison with the PhD degree, Master’s programs are offered with limited funding opportunities. Students have to look for part-time works to waive their educational expenses. My wife completed her Master’s in Library and Information Science with the most distinguished award in her class. She paid a minimal portion of her educational expenses, and the most amount was paid through scholarships based on her academic results and part-time on-campus works. However, I suggest going for the PhD program over Master’s degree due to the number of opportunities one can get out of it.

TLT: Would you like to say something to our future LIS young professionals to inspire them in this profession?

Mr Hassan Zamir: I always believe in the young generation. They are the future. They can bring change and novel ideas. With tenets such as hard-work, dedication, and passion they can achieve whatever they want. All they need is some patience. I suggest the young professionals start early and explore various new techniques in work environments. This is the age of information and internet. Putting information online such as on websites, social media, blogs will be an exciting idea for the young LIS professionals. Information cannot be only contained within physical buildings like libraries. Everything is becoming online these days. So, the young professionals should think about how they can serve information needs of specific communities through online libraries. They must learn computing and content management skills, programming languages like Python, HTML, CSS etc. and research techniques on top of traditional library service skills. The tremendous amount of free and authentic resources is available online to learn these skills. All they need is determination and, and I believe they can do it correctly.

TLT: As you know that The Librarian Times is the first-ever weekly news bulletin in our field and continuing without having an interruption of around two years. What could be its future, strength, and overall evaluation from your point of view?

 

Mr Hassan Zamir: I have heard about The Librarian Times (TLT). I believe it is making a big difference in the LIS field. There are limited LIS publications in Bangladesh. So, TLT is working towards filling that big gap, which is a remarkable initiative. Since its online and open, it can make a long-lasting transformation in the LIS profession. I congratulate the whole TLT team and welcome any opportunity to support TLT in achieving its unique vision.

 

TLT: Thank you very much for giving your valuable time

 

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