The Perception of Time Has Been Changing

Letter from the Executive Director, December 2022

One can hardly believe how our perception of time has changed over the past couple of years. We have all had to come to grips with “a different way of doing things” and adjust our expectations about the pace of how things get done. Some things have accelerated and others slowed, depending on the context. The pace of activity at NISO has certainly picked up, with the community asking more and more of our organization and the process we have for getting to community consensus.

Looking back on the past year, it is gratifying how much we have accomplished. NISO has received two significant project grants in 2022 to advance standards work regarding cooperative collections development in libraries and work on communicating the status of scientific retractions from IMLS and the Sloan Foundation, respectively. We have published the CRediT Terminology as a formal standard, the e-book metadata recommended practice, and an updated version of the NISO STS standard, along with draft versions of the audio-video recommended practice and the standards-specific ontology standards for public comment. We continue to make regular updates to standards that are continuously updated, such as KBART and JATS4R. Internationally, the subcommittee NISO manages for ISO, TC 46/SC 9, successfully published  Principles of Identification, a revision of the DOI standard, and is nearing completion of work on the new Research Activity Identifier (RAiD). NISO hosted several thousand participants in more than two dozen educational events. The NISO Plus Conference in February was a great success, and we’ve returned to hosting in-person events this fall with the first NISO Plus Forum in Washington on metadata. We have accomplished a lot and are poised to move forward with much more.

As we enter a season of giving and thankfulness, I would like to reflect on those who have made tremendous contributions to our success as an organization. There are those on the leadership committees, who review proposals and help to ensure we’re progressing toward our collective goals. Members of working groups work through the technical details of producing the standards and recommended practices we distribute. The many speakers and contributors to our educational and training programs provide valuable skills development opportunities to the communities we serve. The members of our Board provide vision and guidance in the direction and scope of our organization. On a wider level, the member representatives and even the implementers of our work all extend and amplify the work that each of these people support. Finally, there is the amazing team of NISO staff, whose dedication and commitment are unparalleled. Each of these people play an important role in achieving our mission of facilitating the unfettered exchange of information.

And as I draw to a close this final message of 2022 to the community, it is with a heavy heart that I acknowledge the contributions of Alice Meadows, NISO’s Director of Community Engagement, who will be stepping away from the NISO staff at the start of the coming year.  Alice joined NISO following the merger with NFAIS in 2019. She has been instrumental in ensuring that the overlapping, but somewhat different, communities remained engaged and active as we integrated. She was also critical in the development of a variety of our diversity and inclusivity initiatives, such as our NISO Plus Scholarship program, the expansion of our DEIA committee and activities, and our engagement with the C4DISC initiative. In the same way that time has dilated during the pandemic, I’m amazed by both her impact and the time she’s been with NISO, which seems simultaneously like forever and the blink of an eye. Alice will be moving on to support her expanding consulting endeavors with the MoreBrains Cooperative. We are so grateful for the things she has added to our efforts and the positive effect she has had.

There is so much that the coming year will bring. NISO Plus, with its amazing lineup of keynote speakers and an intriguing selection of sessions, will be another engaging kickoff to the new year. A variety of new work projects that were approved this fall are set to get off the ground. Looking ahead further, there are a number of ideas circulating for new projects that could make a significant impact on how information is distributed. In addition, we will have new team members joining us in the new year. There is so much ahead!

On behalf of the NISO staff and our Board, we hope that you enjoy all the joys of the year-end season, and that the new year brings each of you peace and prosperity, both for your families as well as for your endeavors.


Todd Carpenter
Executive Director, NISO