Dr Barbara Lemon, NSLA Executive Officer
There are tinsel decorations in the streets and the unmistakable muzak of the season is piping out across the city. Suddenly it seems that 2019 is coming to a close. It has been a remarkable year. To see what made this one special, take a look at our year in review by NSLA Program Coordinator, Aimee Said.
As to the future, the overall NSLA program for 2020 was set by CEOs at their third and final meeting for the year on 21-22 November in Hobart. The meeting resulted in decisions on:
- A whole of NSLA collection policy review. As five libraries are in the process of updating their collection development policies, this is a chance to really look at what we should be collecting together, what separately, and what we are missing entirely. The review will form the basis for our next collaborative projects, covering physical and digital collections.
- Scoping for a collaborative web archiving system. Following the collection review, we can begin a detailed scoping exercise for new infrastructure that will see the Australian Web Archive collecting sustainably at national, state and territory level, based on the best technology available to us. This will ensure continuing public access to a large sample of the online material created by Australians every year, and to bespoke collections documenting specific social and political events, all in one giant, living collection of eye-watering scale.
- Sustainable Development Goals. NSLA has responsibility for monitoring a number of stretch targets for the library sector relating to digital access, contribution to the economy, cultural competency and workforce diversity.
- Cultural safety. Within and beyond our formal Culturally Safe Libraries Program, CEOs looked honestly at the practical and cultural changes that must take place in our libraries. Discussion was led by Palawa man Damien Webb, as Manager of Indigenous Engagement at the State Library of New South Wales and convenor of the NSLA Blakforce group.
- Access to Australian standards. Negotiations continue following the recent public consultation by Standards Australia. NSLA will continue to advocate for public access to Australian standards in libraries on reasonable terms.
- NSLA strategic planning for 2020-2023. We’ll begin planning now for workshops at the March NSLA meeting in Canberra, where we’ll be joined by colleagues from New Zealand, building toward a new strategic plan to take effect from July 2020.
Exciting times are ahead. A huge thanks to all NSLA libraries for dedicating staff time and expertise not only to our major projects, but to our many advisory groups and networks who are busy sharing ideas, tools and resources every month. NSLA works only because of your generosity of spirit.