Dr. Jenny Stevenson’s Advanced Search and Discovery Program

Dr. Jennifer “Jenny” Stevenson recently celebrated her one-year anniversary with GSE which has been filled with outstanding work and great recognition. Jenny’s educational background is in Library and Information Science with an Archival Concentration, Digital Libraries, and Information Studies. She has a passion for “organizing information and making it discoverable” to the diversity of users.

Jenny’s current work at the Defense Threat Reduction Information Analysis Center (DTRIAC) has received high praise. She has conducted multiple presentations to different user groups on her work with the Department of Defense’s (DoD) nuclear testing archives. The nuclear testing archives contain a collection of millions of different media types including documents, photos, film, test drawings, etc. The DoD nuclear testing archives contain information dating from the Manhattan Project (during WWII) through present day. The leading research question is: “How do you get to the science quickly while creating a space that allows one to evaluate recorded materials and permits accessibility?” Jenny created the Advanced Search and Discovery program (ASD) for the DoD nuclear testing archives. The ASD program is taking the initial step to make the archives easily accessed and available to researchers. The ASD program is making this possible through machine learning and automated arrangement and description. The machine learning will be supervised and seen as a tool to accelerate work rate to reduce backlog. For an undertaking this massive, the traditional archiving process is too slow and would create a backlog; however, the ASD program implements Jenny’s years of archival experience and machine learning to work with the scope of this collection. Jenny’s work is a living breathing catalog that organizes information and makes it readily available to researchers. The machine learning at the core of her Advanced Search and Discovery program is expected to cut more than two decades from the estimated 32 years that traditional cataloging methodology would require.

For her significant contribution, she received an award from SAIC!

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