Entries for month: January 2013
January 22, 2013 · Margaret Krause
Academic Search Premier is now searchable on your mobile device. EBSCO recently released a mobile app for iPhones and Androids which is available for all members of the Georgetown Law community. Just click on the link at the bottom of the Academic Search Premier web site and enter your Georgetown Law e-mail address. EBSCO will send you an e-mail with a link to the free app in the iTunes store or on Google Play as well as an authentication key to access the Georgetown Law subscription to interdisciplinary scholarly journals.
Feel free to ask a reference librarian if you have any questions about searching on Academic Search Premier.
News for Students · Database News
January 18, 2013 · Kumar Percy Jayasuriya
The balance of privacy and the public need for information will be a major theme of the library's January 30 symposium, Big Data and Big Challenges for Law and Legal Information
Privacy and data is now entwined in the national discussion about gun control. Many people have seen the interactive map posted on website of the Journal News identifying the names and addresses of all gun owners in New York's Westchester and Rockland counties. In light of the mass murder in Newtown, Connecticut, the newspaper created the map using names of addresses listed in the New York public records. Designed to inform readers about the prevalence of gun ownership in their neighborhood, the newspaper's maps have disturbed gun owners who feel the website violated their privacy rights and leaves them vulnerable to attack.
Jeff Sonderman of the website Poynter.org recently wrote an article to further the discussion of journalistic ethics when working with big datasets. Titled Programmers Explain How to Turn Data into Journalism & Why that Matters, Sonderman's piece ends with a list of considerations people should contemplate before posting personal data. Below is a very simplified summary of his factors.
Do you have a reason for publishing the data, or are you doing it "because we can"?
Have you considered reasons why not to publish it?:
Who could be harmed
Is the data accurate
Is it relevant to the story
Are you presenting the data in a way that maximizes the benefit and minimizes the harm?
The library invites you to participate in the discussion about big data by watching the symposium live online on Wednesday, January 30.
Privacy Law · Big Data · 125th Anniversary · Library Events
January 16, 2013 · Morgan Stoddard
The Georgetown Law Library's symposium, Big Data and Big Challenges for Law and Legal Information, will explore a range of topics related to the applications of big data in legal scholarship, practice, and policy.
One of our panelists, Professor Josh Blackman, will provide a fascinating introduction to assisted decisionmaking and "how viewing the law as data can facilitate the analysis of how courts work and how courts decide cases. With this foundation, he will explore how attorneys can use this technology to improve the representation of their clients and how non-lawyers can obtain easier access to justice."
To learn more about Professor Blackman's research and scholarship in this area, see Josh Blackman, Adam Aft & Corey Carpenter, FantasySCOTUS: Crowdsourcing a Prediction Market for the Supreme Court, 10 Nw. J. Tech. & Intell. Prop. 125 (2012), visit joshblackman.com, and watch the symposium live online on Wednesday, January 30.
Big Data · 125th Anniversary · Library Events
January 16, 2013 · Jason Zarin
Bloomberg Law has added Taxation to its Practice Center interface. The Tax Practice Center provides ready access to
- Primary statutory and regulatory tax materials, including the Internal Revenue Code, Treasury Regulations, and IRS administrative guidance
- Tax case decisions and dockets, including the United States Tax Court
- BNA Tax Management Portfolios
- Practicing Law Institute treatises
- Selected tax journals
- M&A and related transactional forms and agreements
Students and faculty interested in requesting an account on Bloomberg Law may obtain one by following the instructions available in the Library's catalog.
News for Faculty · Tax Law · News for Students · Database News
January 16, 2013 · Ann Hemmens
On January 10th, House Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor announced that starting with the 113th Congress (2013), the Government Printing Office (GPO) will make all bills and resolutions under consideration by the House, as provided by the House Bill Clerk, available to the public for bulk download in XML format. They have posted a User Guide. GPO also provides access to individual House and Senate Congressional bills (from the 103rd Congress; 1993 forward) via the FDsys website.
In 2011, the House directed the Clerk to create docs.house.gov, providing public access to committee documents and legislation (bills, amendments, resolutions) being considered by the House. Additionally you can access live video streaming from the House floor with your mobile phone or tablet via the House of Representatives’ Houselive website or House Committee activity via the Library of Congress.
Since 1995, as directed by the 104th Congress, the Library of Congress has been making federal legislative information available to the public via the THOMAS website. Here researches can find House and Senate legislative status information (when was a bill was introduced, who sponsored it, a summary of the bill, and legislative activity on the bill). THOMAS includes the text of bills and resolutions (from 101st Congress; 1989 forward), the Congressional Record (from 101st Congress; 1989 forward), committee information (104th Congress; 1995 forward), schedules, calendars, and more. The Library of Congress is working on the next generation of this website, Congress.gov, making it more user-friendly and improving the technological infrastructure.
Research · Government Information
January 15, 2013 · Roger Skalbeck
On Inauguration Day, January 21st, Georgetown University Law Library will be open normal hours but will have access restrictions. The Library is within the secure zone (covering about 1.5 miles from K Street and Massachusetts Avenue NW on the north to Independence Avenue NE & NW on the south, and 2nd Street NE on the east to 23rd Street NW on the west). To be allowed into this area you must have and show current Law Center identification at security checkpoints.
Here's information on planning for the Presidential Inauguration.
Photo: An eye to the future / Ian Muir / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
Georgetown News · Library News · Library Policies
January 14, 2013 · Kumar Percy Jayasuriya
During the law library's Jan. 30 conference on Big Data, Professor Kathy Zeiler of the Georgetown law faculty will be presenting on issues connected to the use of big data. One of her topics has been in the news this month.
A recent Johns Hopkins study used government data sets to evaluate the number of medical malpractice claims that have resulted from egregious surgical negligence. This work could only have been done because of a controversial collection of nearly 10,000 malpractice claims housed in the National Practitioners Data Bank (NPBD).
Created by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration, the NPDB is a confidential system that compiles malpractice payouts, hospital discipline and regulatory sanctions against doctors and other health professionals. Prof. Zeiler will discuss why the government temporarily restricted public access to the NPBD in order to protect the privacy interest of the malpractice defendants.
This is just one way in which the library's conference will examine the legal and information-policy factors which society should consider when using data to further the public good.
Please join us on January 30 for the conference Big Data and Big Challenges for Law and Legal Information.
Big Data · 125th Anniversary · News for Alumni · Library Events · News for Faculty · Library News · News for Students
January 11, 2013 · Margaret Krause
Georgetown University's undergraduate library recently streamlined off-campus access to its catalog and online resources for all members of the Georgetown community. Law faculty, students and staff have access to the vast majority of Lauinger's interdisciplinary databases to complement the law library's electronic resources. When using the Lauinger library catalog, make use of your MyAccount section of George to request books from the undergraduate library. By signing in with your NetID and password initially, you will only have to authenticate once to use the catalog and ebook resources from the main campus.
For off-campus acccess to Lauinger's electronic resources, beginning with this sign-on page also simplifies that process. Once signed on, Georgetown researchers can move across multiple databases without multiple sign-ons.
If you have any questions about any of Lauinger's resources or remote access, feel free to consult a reference librarian.
Georgetown News · News for Faculty · News for Students · Current Awareness
January 08, 2013 · Kumar Percy Jayasuriya
On January 30 the Law Library will host a symposium on the legal issues connected with big data collection, usage, and preservation. The library is blogging about the topic of the conference in anticipation of the event. Today we highlight the work of one of the conference presenters, Carole Roan Gresenz, an economist and professor at the Georgetown School of Nursing & Health Studies.
Dr. Gresenz recently co-authored a report which used a range of data sets to assess cancer related outcomes in the District of Columbia. Entitled "Monitoring Cancer Outcomes Across the Continuum," her work synthesizes and analyzes available data to document the capacity of the D.C. health care delivery system to provide cancer prevention and treatment services to those who are publicly insured.
The report also highlights gaps in data availability that limit understanding of cancer outcomes among District residents. On Jan. 30 she will talk about data challenges for assessing health and health care in local communities and what the future of big data holds for better understanding and monitoring community health.
Please register to join us on Wednesday, January 30 to learn more from her and other distinguished panelists and speakers from a variety of disciplines.
An excerpt from pages vii - viii of Professor Gresenz's report:
Perhaps as notable and important as the key findings summarized above are the gaps in available information regarding key elements of the cancer continuum. In what follows, we highlight important opportunities for data collection and analysis, noting the scarcity of information for describing outcomes for certain population subgroups, as well as current limitations of data for tracking historical and future trends in outcomes.
(1) More needs to be known about cancer treatment patterns and quality in the District.
More comprehensive data on treatment is needed to assess (a) the full range of treatment received by patients, (b) the degree to which treatment is in accordance with standards for quality of cancer care, and (c) variation in treatment patterns over time and across subgroups of interest.
(2) Regular, continued monitoring and timely reporting of cancer-related outcomes among District residents are essential, as is assuring validity and comprehensiveness of cancer registry data in the District.
Routine, consistent, and timely reporting of cancer-related outcomes in the District is essential to guide the efforts of government and nongovernmental entities working to reduce the burden of cancer in the District.
(3) Supplementary data would provide a more robust understanding of potential barriers to cancer screening.
Self-reports of cancer screening are subject to recall bias, as survey respondents, especially those who are black and Hispanic, tend to overreport screening (Rauscher, Johnson, et al., 2008). Therefore, it would be useful to supplement BRFSS data by exploring rates of screening developed from other data sources, such as claims data, and gleaning information from patient navigators in the Citywide Patient Navigation Network to identify barriers to screening among vulnerable populations.
(4) Opportunities exist to learn more about patient experiences across the continuum.
Although measuring patients’ experiences with cancer care is a critical component of overall quality assessment, to our knowledge, no systematically collected surveys are conducted with cancer patients in the District regarding their experiences with cancer care at any stage of the continuum. Administration of surveys of experiences with cancer treatment, survivorship, and end-of-life care could inform quality improvement or consumer choices between cancer treatment facilities.
(5) More information is needed on awareness and knowledge of cancer prevention and control among District residents.
Little empirical data are available regarding the degree to which District residents—overall, or by relevant geographic or sociodemographic subgroups—are aware of cancer risks, protective factors, or the benefits of early detection. The National Cancer Institute’s Health Information National Trends Survey surveys a nationally representative sample of American adults biennially regarding cancer awareness and communication and may present opportunities for identification of gaps in awareness and knowledge in the District.
(6) More attention needs to be given to understanding the regional burden of disease, patient flows across geographic borders, and regional capacity for cancer care.
Many cancers treated in the District are among non-District residents, suggesting the need for exploration of the key drivers of care-seeking across District boundaries and an assessment of health care capacity that encompasses the District and surrounding counties.
Big Data · 125th Anniversary · Georgetown News · News for Alumni · Library Events · News for Faculty · News for Students
January 08, 2013 · Margaret Krause
As state legislatures reconvene in 2013, many bills relating to the Affordable Health Care Act will be introduced and debated at the state level. The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) maintains a Federal Health Reform: State Legislative Tracking database allowing you to monitor this hot topic. It will be updated every Tuesday, beginning January 14th, to include newly introduced legislation. Currently, all legislation on this topic from the 2011 and 2012 legislative sessions can be searched by state, year, keyword, status and/or primary sponsor.
This is only one of the "Hot Topics" databases maintained by NCSL. These resources allow you to monitor such issues as immigration, education and labor and unemployment across all 50 states.
News for Faculty · News for Students · Current Awareness · Research · Government Information