Our 2016 Highlights
The Okanagan Library regularly and purposefully establishes partnerships with campus and community collaborators in order to advance the University’s strategic initiatives and take our passion and expertise outside the Library’s walls. In 2016, our community partnership initiatives included growth of projects such as the Innovation Library collaboration with the Okanagan Regional Library, the Leader in Residence program, and the One Book Kelowna initiative in addition to the new Okanagan Region Historical Digitization Project. On-campus and inter-campus projects such as the Inclusive Technology Lab partnership with the Disability Resource Centre and records management program collaboration with the UBC Records Management Office have led to expanded opportunities for shared engagement, and we look forward to exciting work in 2017 with both new and existing colleagues.
Leader in Residence Program
In June 2016, the Library’s Leader in Residence (LIR) program featured Pilar Martinez, Chief Executive Officer of Library Journal’s 2014 “Library of the Year,” Edmonton Public Library. With over 50 in-person attendees from the Okanagan and beyond, and over 1,000 online views of Pilar’s LIR presentation “Making a Difference: A Community-Led Service Framework for Libraries,” which was archived in cIRcle, UBC’s institutional repository, 2016 marked the most successful LIR event to date.
The Library’s 2017 LIR program will host Terri Tomchyshyn, winner of the 2014 Canadian Library Association/Alan MacDonald Mentorship Award and Senior Evaluator, Department of National Defense in Ottawa.
One Book Kelowna
Fall 2016 marked presentation of the second One Book program organized by UBC Okanagan Library. The program expanded in 2016 to involve two new partners, Okanagan Regional Library and Okanagan College, in an effort to bring programming to a larger segment of the local population. A diverse series of events focused on author Alix Hawley’s award-winning book All True Not a Lie In It.
A program opening at the Okanagan Regional Library’s Kelowna branch, boasted fiddle music and a warm introduction by last year’s One Book author, Michael V. Smith, and concluded with Hawley presenting on her research and writing process.
At Okanagan College’s Centre for Dialogue, a later event featured a panel discussion about the pleasures and perils of writing historical fiction. Beginning with an introduction to the history behind All True Not a Lie In It by Okanagan College professor Howard Hisdal, the event continued with a brief reading from each of the authors and a discussion of the writing process, dealing with historical (in)accuracies and the distinction between creative fiction and non-fiction.
The final event at the Third Space Café featured Dr. Margo Tamez from UBC Okanagan’s Indigenous Studies program speaking powerfully about her experience of reading the novel. Hawley wrapped up the series with a reading from the sequel (expected to be released in 2018) and answered questions.
Okanagan Region Historical Digitization Project
In 2014, UBC Okanagan began to consider the possibility of establishing a regional digital collection of historical collections related to southern British Columbia. Further investigation and consultation revealed many interesting, unpublished collections residing in a number of Okanagan locations including archives, museums, historical societies, and other organizations. In many cases, these institutions and organizations are very small, understaffed, and lack the financial resources and staff expertise necessary to enhance access to their important historical resources through online means. In addition, there are significant complications involved in relocating the collections to UBC Okanagan for purposes of digitization. From this reality evolved the idea of an “itinerant digitization” project wherein a skilled student digitization team would transport digitization equipment to locations in the Okanagan Valley and provide digitization services in situ. The only requirements on the part of partner organizations are access to space and electricity, as well as permission to allow open, online access to the digitized collections via a project portal.
In 2016, this project proposal garnered donor support. UBC archivists on the two campuses are working collaboratively to conduct a pre-digitization survey with interested institutions/organizations, and develop a clear understanding of what has been digitized, current platforms used to access any digitized materials, level of descriptive information (metadata) available, and priorities for preservation.
In Summer 2017, student digitization teams will be trained and begin the site-based work of digitizing and uploading identified collections to a web-based portal. This unique initiative positions UBC Okanagan as a regional leader in digital preservation, and strengthens links with the Point Grey campus as UBC’s University Archivist has committed a study leave year (July 2017-June 2018) to take an active role in managing the project and developing its future phases.
UBC’s Okanagan Campus Library conducted an extensive survey of campus administrative records in 2015/16 to determine the extent to which these records are being managed in a principled and defensible way. A total of 66 units were surveyed; in early 2016, the collected data was analysed by the Chief Librarian, the Records Management Office in Vancouver, and two graduate student assistants.
The analysis identified three areas requiring remedial attention: response to risk, treatment of compliance obligations, and cultivation of the University’s archival record.
As the campus hub for professional practice in information management, UBC Okanagan Campus Library launched, in August 2016, Phase 1 of a service-based records management program, which will reduce risk, increase compliance with statute, internal policy, and business need, and ensure the long-term preservation of the campus’ archival record.
The program is designed around a strongly articulated desire across units for leadership and a decisive course of action from a point of authority, and will primarily consist of the delivery of services: education, support, advice, and procedural resources for campus units, with units retaining final responsibility for their own records management activities.
To date, in Phase 1, the Library has:
- formed a Community of Practice among administrators across academic units to create durable communication channels and establish feedback mechanisms for resource development;
- used the data collected in the records survey and compiled a list of candidate units for prioritized records review services based on reported risk profiles; and
- provided select tailored records review services to units according to risk priority which will result in classification, scheduling, disposition, and archival accession recommendations.