Reflecting on the ARL meeting last week and OCUL this week, several QUL priority initiatives are high on my mind – e-research services, webscale library management systems and LAMP.
Starting with LAMP, one of the highlights of ARL was an evening in the new Hunt Library at NCSU. Designed by Snohetta, one of the firms designing our own Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts Centre, the Hunt Library lives up to its vision: “Its bold design is a visual statement of its bold purpose: to be a place not of the past but of the future, a place where our students, faculty, and partners can gather to research, learn, experiment, collaborate, and strengthen NC State’s long tradition of leading transformative change.” It was very interesting being there as we’re considering the fabric of Queen’s campus as a whole – thinking beyond a single building, how does a system of libraries support and impact learning and research across the university? Lots of food for thought as we move into the final stages of our master space plan.
Discussions of webscale library management systems are really about developing a vision for our digitally dominated environment: how might we approach the processes of information management and delivery differently within our own institutions and in relation to each other? The OCUL summit held in February sparked many such questions and the OCUL directors are discussing next steps for answering them. At Queen’s we identified this as an area we need to begin considering in 2013-14.
In the e-research realm, at ARL we heard about the Academic Preservation Trust , a preservation environment for research content, and at OCUL we’re discussing a proposal for an OCUL community cloud storage project that could play a significant role in developing effective research data management services. Again I’m struck by how far ahead we are within OCUL, with a decade of experience managing data in Scholars Portal and working collaboratively across 21 institutions.
On a local community note, congratulations to the fabulous spelling team of Jane Philipps, Laurie Scott and Ainslie Thomson, who made it to the final moments of the Grate Groan-Up Spelling Bee on Tuesday evening. At one point it looked like KFPL and QUL were going to be spelling all night! In the end a KPMG team took the top speller title. The event raised over $20,000 for Kingston Literacy and Skills to help support its Family Literacy Programs.
Family… one of my daughters is travelling at the moment so perhaps that’s why I’m remembering a mother’s day spent in Venice, many years ago. La Festa Della Mamma — a day of people strolling in the streets and the feeling of ‘it takes a village to raise a child.’ Whether you’re a mother or an appreciative offspring, have a happy mother’s day weekend.