Judith Currano is the head of the Chemistry Library at the University of Pennsylvania, where she has worked since 1999. In this capacity, she is responsible for developing Penn's library collections in chemistry, training and assisting scientists in chemical information retrieval, and teaching a credit course in chemical information. Judith has a M. Sc. in library and information sciences from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a B. A. in chemistry and English from the University of Rochester, where she performed undergraduate research in the laboratory of Dr. Robert K. Boeckman, Jr. She has served on library advisory boards and committees for ACS Publications and RSC Publications, Chemical Abstracts Service, BioRad, and the Science of Synthesis. Judith is active in the American Chemical Society and the Special Libraries Association and acts as adviser to Penn's Women in Chemistry group. Her work with the Special Libraries Association Chemistry Division includes developing and teaching short courses that introduce new chemistry librarians to basic principles of chemistry and chemical information retrieval and teach more seasoned professionals advanced substructure search techniques.
Judith's research interests revolve around teaching chemical information, specifically focusing on teaching students techniques of maximizing information retrieval through an understanding of information organization. While not strictly research-related, she enjoys the puzzle posed by information retrieval in general: to maximize recall of desired information while minimizing retrieval of extraneous records. She has presented widely on these topics and other issues related to chemical information and librarianship.
Chemical Information for Chemists: A Primer. Judith N. Currano and Dana L. Roth, eds. Cambridge, UK: Royal Society of Chemistry, 2014.
Science and the Law: Analytical Data in Support of Regulation in Health, Food, and the Environment. William G. Town and Judith N. Currano, eds. ACS Symposium Series v. 1167. Washington, DC: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Currano, Judith N. "Teaching chemical information for the future: The more things change, the more they stay the same," in The Future of the History of Chemical Information, Leah R. McEwen and Robert E. Buntrock, eds. ACS Symposium Series v. 1164. Washington, DC: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Currano, Judith N. “Chemistry literature and its users,” in The Encyclopedia of Library and Information Sciences, 3rd Ed. CRC Press (2009).
Currano, Judith N. “Learning to search in ten easy steps: A review of a chemical information course.” Journal of Chemical Education, 82 (3): 484-488 (2005).