International Debate

Social science sites of the week

April 19, 2013 1095

In the news this week.

The Funeral of Baroness Thatcher. Full version still available to download on BBC iplayer.
 until 24th April.
On this topic more on history of prime minister funerals

The BBC has a quick snapshot of funerals from Pitt to Heath
The  Economist explains the definition of a state funeral.
UCL Constitution Unit website also has more academic discussion on this.
For background on state funerals, arrangements, procedure and costs see this useful note from the House of Commons Library
The Guardian Datablog has produced the funeral costs in comparison with the estimate £48,000 for Churchill) in a useful graphic display.It also has other facts
On a related theme interesting to compare coverage of the Thatcher funeral with that of Winston Churchill in 1965.
Fascinating British Pathe news reels the tone of commentary is worth listening to consider how reporting has changed.
See also text from the Guardian archive for the date.
For those in UK HE with access to JISC Media Hub (best used via Firefox)
There are also interesting images and film footage of the style of coverage which would interest be of interest to social history and the history of journalism. ITN lunch time news displayed a silent montage of flags flying at half-mast .You can also see the crowds queuing to enter the lying in state.

Not exactly related but you can find material on  political leaders and funerals!

 Manuscripts online
Provides a portal to information about manuscripts rare books and documents held in UK archives and libraries 1000-1500. Originally funded by JISC as a partnership between Universities of Sheffield, Leicester, Birmingham, York, Glasgow and Queen’s University Belfast. It is intended as an earlier counterpart to the connected histories website.  It includes some early economic histories such as the taxatio database which contains the valuation, plus related details, of the English and Welsh parish churches and prebends listed in the ecclesiastical taxation assessment of 1291-2.
A search for funerals reveals interesting results relating to early medieval wills
The consortium of European research libraries also has a CEDRL portal of early manuscripts which cross searches major archive catalogues mainly from European nations although also some Australian ones

Venezuela elections.
See our recommended resources.
Find some background data on social, economic conditions in Venezuela using these free resources. A basic starting point is the free World Bank data
More specialist Latin american resources with coverage of the country include:
United Nations ECLAC which produces the Statistical Yearbook for Latin America and the Caribbean.  This contains major economic and social indicators. Also available are Demographic Observatory bulletins
From the IADB Latin America and Caribbean Macro Watch Data Tool has over 500 indicators consolidating data on macroeconomics, social issues, trade, capital flows, markets and governance.
SEDLAC  (Universidad Nacional de La Plata) and The World Bank Socio-Economic Database for Latin America and the Caribbean includes information from over 200 household surveys carried out in 25 LAC countries.
PAHO Maintains a regional health observatory which has substantial statistics.These cover mortality as well as health care systems.

Guardian  launches new citizen journalism website
New site from the Guardian for citizens to share news photos and views. There will be an assignments section where editors will issue call outs for copy on specific topics.
See the contributions on Margaret thatcher’s funeral.
They include some protest shots.
CNN has a similar citizen service which has been running for several years.
See also its 36 stories that prove citizen journalism matters.
Other well-known sites Global Voices, an international community of bloggers reporting on global events. Founded in 2005 by former CNN Beijing and Tokyo Bureau Chief, Rebecca MacKinnon and technologist and Africa expert, Ethan Zuckerman while they were both fellows at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University.
Sourcewatch has a useful directory of initiatives from different countries worldwide.
It also has a directory of tools which citizen journalists can use to create sites.

Arts Alliance Evidence library
Really great free resource created by an alliance of arts organisations which seeks to demonstrate the importance of the arts to society. In particular their effectiveness both social and economic in the criminals justice system. It is particularly good at highlighting impact reports relating to research projects some reports can be downloaded free of charge Arts topics include: creative writing, radio, performance, music and drama. Participant types include NEETS, offenders, and women. Other useful websites for tracing information on criminologyand  prison rehabilitation include;
Evidence reports on the Youth Justice library.  Find out examples of case studies relating to youth offenders and the criminal justice system
Also in the UK the Third sector knowledge portal
developed by the Third Sector Research Centre (TSRC) in collaboration with the British Library has some relevant resources as does the Social welfare portal which has some coverage of work with offenders.
NCJRS database – Has abstracts of articles and reports relating to all aspects of criminal justice. It focuses upon USA government and official publications as well as research reports since 1995. Abstracts rather than full text.

Female FTSE report 2013
Acces the latest annual review of number of women board members at the UK’s leading FTSE companies from the Cranfield University website. Past issues from 2005 onwards are also available for comparison.

Disability in time and place
is an interesting website created by English Heritage. It covers 1050 to the present day and aims to highlight the way in which disabled people’s lives were refelcted and effected bin space and buildings.
The site is divided into time periods each covers the history of how the disabled were treated, their housing and access. It includes coverage of physical and mental illnesses.
There is a  useful timeline.

Syria digital security monitoring project
Maintained by the SecDev Foundation, a Canadian not-for-profit organization. It
aims to provide tools to encourage digital openness in Syria. In addition to links to resources for activists, the digital security news section is a good source of reports on social media analysis of the conflict and reports of  digital censorship within the region.
The Syrian observatory for human rights is another key area for finding reports on the current
It has interviews, videos and photos of violations from the scene.

Review of Think Tank publications on EU affairs
Great new free monthly service  Published by the
 General Secretariat of the Council  Central Library  which aims to keep you up to date with the latest abstract and links to major think tanks covering European Union issues.
Key headings:  EU institutions; EU politics. At present  the site doesn’t seem to have a specific url apart from the main library website

AFP e-diplomacy hub
Maintained by French news agency Agence France-Presse. Find out about twitter and foreign policy. Aims to offer a window on  online diplomacy in action!
Features of the site – a map of embassies on line with information about their level of activity. Also a list of key international organisations online. There is an e-diplomacy list with real time ranking of e-diplomatic action based on the accounts of officials. There is also a top index of political people online.

finally to end the launch of the Digital Public Library of America
in beta. Supported by Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Arcadia Fund, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, This great site aims to cover acces to the public to a wealth of historic collections. There are timelines and keyword searching functions. However there is also an excellent thematic section of exhibitions. These currently include activism, the great depression. The former covers civil rights, womens rights, LGBT activism. resources include text primary source documents, photographs and sound. For example see this sample search on suffrage which retrieves a wealth of resources on the fight for the vote. Including manuscripts, leaflets, photographs and anti suffrage postacards.

ALISS is a not-for-profit unincorporated professional society. It is an independent group which was formed in April 2005 by the former committee of (Aslib Social Science Information Group and Network) The aim of the group is to; Provide opportunities for networking and self-development offer a forum for communication create a network of cooperation and a forum for discussion about emerging issues in social science librarianship.

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