SLIS professor elected international data chair

Marcia Lei Zeng, professor in the school of library science, was elected to the Dublin Core Metadata Board in December. Photo courtesy of KSU.

Marcia Lei Zeng, professor in the school of library science, was elected to the Dublin Core Metadata Board in December. Photo courtesy of KSU.

Nicholas Sewell

A Kent State library and information sciences professor will now lead a 66-member international data advisory board known as the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative, or DCMI, Advisory Board.

Marcia Lei Zeng, a professor in the School of Library and Information Science, or SLIS, department, was elected to be the inaugural chair of the board in December 2013. The organization, that represents almost 20 countries, consists of professionals from fields including librarianship, computer science, text encoding and museums, according to the organization’s website.

DCMI is an open forum that sets data gathering standards for those in the metadata community. Its work is based on open consensus building and international participation.  The initiative is named after the group of professionals who founded it during a workshop convention in Dublin, Ohio in 1995.

“DCMI is a member organization, not a law or a rule that is dictated for tagging information,” said Flo Cunningham, who is a marketing communications and public relations specialist for SLIS.  “Companies, libraries, etc., become members to take advantage of the vast DCMI resources and provide input on the development of new resources, because DCMI standards are flexible and widely accepted around the world.”

Zeng has been teaching for Kent State University since 1992.  She has taught a variety of courses in the SLIS department during her tenure, such as Electronic Publishing, and Digital Image Processing and Collection Management.  Zeng politely declined an interview for this story.

Jeff Fruit, who is the interim director for SLIS, said Zeng definitely deserves her election to the advisory board with her extensive metadata work.

“Professor Zeng has been an international leader for many years with groups that aim to set standards in the digital world in such areas as metadata and linked data,” said Fruit.  “Her work is fundamental to how we organize and find digital content of all kinds.”

Stanley T. Wearden, who is the current dean for the College of Communication and Information here at Kent State, praised Zeng’s work in the international sphere.

“Dr. Zeng’s international reputation continues to enhance the global influence of the school,” Wearden said.  “At the same time, she touches lives every day here at the university; just last year she earned the college’s Distinguished Teaching Award based on a glowing recommendation from one of her students. “We’re delighted to have someone of her caliber on our faculty.”

Contact Nicholas Sewell at [email protected].