Critical Steph

jiji__1__reasonably_smallMy current avatar*

I am a library & information consultant and trainer/facilitator with a background in academic libraries. I also worked for over five years on the ‘dark side’ as a project manager & engineering team leader for a library software company. I occasionally use that experience to write documentation and co-ordinate developers for software development projects.

I started my company, Critical Eye Communications,  in 2006.  Since then, I have worked freelance in many roles, including training, facilitating, consulting, writing user documentation and managing developers. The ‘Critical’ in ‘Critical Steph’ is taken from my company name.

My main interests are in all things digital library, digital copyright, metadata, repositories and also in event amplification & social media, Open Access and Open Development. I also like to work in the grey area of being a dumb user among developers.  I like to talk about my professional interests (and sometimes non-work interests),  on Twitter, as @criticalsteph

In my spare time, I like yarn, tea, coffee, cake, cocktails, chocolate and shoes and will consider working for any or all of these things. But money is useful too!

My recent work has included –

Working with the  The Benefits of Sharing (TBoS) project. The project aimed to contribute towards a new vision for library systems by investigating the following question: “How would a shared library management system improve services in Scotland?” I worked with the project team to design an LMS Day and was the main facilitator for the day.  Held on the 5th October 2012, the day brought together forty staff working in a variety of roles Scottish libraries to talk about the library management systems. The question for the day was, ‘Would a shared library management system improve services in Scotland?’. The outcome of our vote at the end of the day surprise you!

I also worked with the TBoS team to produce an executive summary of the project. As editor of the report, I worked with each of the team to decide on the highlights and main findings from their work packages. We then edited the collaborative document we produced so it could be made available as a PDF and also printed up as hardcopy version for project stakeholders. The PDF version is now freely available for download.

Co-ordinating the development team for the DataFlow project at Oxford. The project created a two-stage data management infrastructure that makes it easy for researchers and their research groups to work with, annotate, publish, and permanently store their research data. My role involved co-ordinating the development team, sprint planning, membership of the Steering Group and liaising with the project manager and project director throughout the project. Check the latest updates for general information and find out about resources for developers.

Contact me for more specific information on current and previous projects or for a chat about possible work at criticalstepht(at)

*I don’t like having my photo taken

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