Day 5: A matter of standards
19 August 2015. In managing the national audiovisual collection, standards play a significant role across a range of archiving activities. So, I was looking forward to this morning’s mega session on the Impact of standards on the international library community. The session included a selection of presentation, namely:
- Overview of the Use and Impact of IFLA Standards, Patrice Landry (Swiss National Library, Switzerland)
- The ISBD Survey (2014): a Report, Agnese Galeffi (Vatican Library, Holy See (Vatican City State))
- IFLA’s Conceptual Models: Impact and Evolution, Christine Oliver (University of Ottawa, Canada)
- Interaction Between IFLA Standards and Other Library Standards: ISBD, RDA, UNIMARC and ISSN: a Long-Lasting Relationship, Gaëlle Béquet (ISSN International Centre / CIEPS, France), Louise Howlett (British Library, United Kingdom) and Mirna Willer (University of Zadar, Croatia)
- A Comparison of the Conditions of Iran Public Libraries with the IFLA Standards, Mohammad-Karim Saberi (Iran, Islamic Republic of) and Fatemeh Pazooki (Iran, Islamic Republic)
- What’s Driving Discovery Systems?: The Case for Standards, Heather Lea Moulaison (iSchool at the University of Missouri, United States), Angela Kroeger(University of Nebraska at Omaha, United States) and Edward M. Corrado (University of Alabama, United States)
- Our Standards vs Their Standards: Development and Re-Use of Non-Library Standards in the Cultural Heritage Domain, Lars Svensson (Deutsche Nationalbibliothek Frankfurt am Main, Germany)
- News Metadata: Library and News Publishers Perspectives, Frederick Zarndt (Global Connexions / Digital Divide Data, United States).
Conversion began with IFLAs role in establishing and or endorsing standards relating to bibliographic control. Whilst IFLA may not be a standards organisation such as the ISO, library cataloguing practices and the standards their based upon require continuous review, realignment and updating. A recent survey showed that once IFLA made their suite of standards open access, 78,000 downloads have been document. Both new and older standards continue to still be in use which raises some concerns, example being IFLAs digitisation guidelines (2002) continues to be popular and of note Australia ranks in the top ten of countries in downloading standards. Discussions on the use, alignment and future of UNIMARC, ISBD, RDA and ISSN gave rise to the emergence of multiple standards and the trend that libraries will adopt what suits them and the collections they manage.
Whilst library collections are managed through a wealth of bibliographic standards, a strong message was sent that they also need to be aware and pay close attention to the standards being used by their sister-organisations in the GLAM sector. For a future that renders cultural collection highly accessible, this approach and change in attitude will heighten the opportunities for data interoperability and interpretability that could lead to a convergence to collection access models. The conceptual model and family of FRBR standards (FRBR, FRAD, FRSAD) has had a positive impact on libraries in managing their metadata. IFLA has been working closely with ICOM and have developed the FRBRoo which is object oriented rather than entity relationship based. This development is representative of what can be achieved across the GLAM sector when collection needs takes prescience over minor inconsistencies when it comes to cataloguing practices.
The Audiovisual and Multimedia Section: Standing Committee Business Meeting 2 continued to work through the agenda. A program team was established for the IFLA WLIC 2016 to take place in Columbus, Ohio. Next year the AVMS will be partnering with Information Technology Section to develop a session and workshop. Approved projects and initiatives included the continuation of the Legal Deposit for AV materials survey, the revision of the AVMS Guidelines for Audiovisual and Multimedia Materials in Libraries and other Institutions which I volunteered to coordinate, revamping the AVMS webpage and the development of an AVMS Communications Strategy. The meeting closed with the Chair noting the success of the AVMS workshop with congratulations to Howard Besser. Participants were mostly from Africa and Kuwait and their feedback was most positive.
In the afternoon, I attended a session on library services to multicultural populations, Unlocking Economic, Social and Cultural Treasures through Electronic/Digital Inclusion and Integration Library Services to Multicultural Populations. Four speakers provided presentations on the current services and projects. These were:
- Guangzhou Library’s “Return of the Historic Images” Collaborative Project, Xiaohong Luo (China), Tian Zhan and Jiangshun Zhang (Guangzhou Library, China)
- “Reading Diploma” – One Way of Supporting a Native Language: Library Work in Person and by Digital means in Espoo City Library, Katia (Ekaterina) Shklyar (Sello Library, Finland)
- Moldovan Public Libraries Emerge to Address the Needs of a Multicultural Population, Gina Grotelueschen (Novateca Program, IREX, Moldova, Republic of)
- Extending the Mission of Archives, Libraries and Museums Beyond the Storage of Knowledge: the Case of Matsieng Royal Archives, Museum and Information Centre, Celina K.M. Qobo (The National University of Lesotho, Lesotho).
Each of these presentations underscored the role the public library plays in cultural heritage and creating a community space for multicultural education, recreation and entertainment. In 2014, the Guangzhou Library, the New Zealand Consulate General in Guangzhou, and the Presbyterian Archives Research Centre (PARC) New Zealand began collaborating on a project based on a collection of images taken by Presbyterian missionaries from New Zealand in China’s Guangdong Province from the late Qing Dynasty to the early 1950s after the founding of the PRC. This project gives light to a shared history. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has provided funds to distribute computers and bring digital literacy to the extensive network of 1380 Moldovan public libraries. The initiative is known as Novateca and will be implemented over the next 5 years. The Reading Diploma program assists children from Russian immigrant families to ensure they have access to Russian language literature in all Finnish libraries. The Matsieng Royal Archives and Museum has extended its mission beyond the storage of knowledge by the centre being used as a community space where Matsieng community members come together to learn new skills. Whether big or small, programs such as these have an impact and demonstrate the value of libraries to key stakeholders and decision makers.
The last activity on today’s list was to attend the IFLA General Assembly. It was standing room only as members approved reports and financial statements and voted on a range of motions and resolutions. Congratulations to all on their appointments including Australia’s own Christine McKenzie (CEO of Yarra Plenty Regional Library Melbourne) as a Governing Board Member (2015-2017).
Tomorrow it’s my turn to present and I am both excited and nervous – fingers crossed all will go well…