OCLC Canada Advisory Council

Minutes — November 3rd 2016

Meeting in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Suzanne Payette, Directrice, Bibliothèque publique de Brossard
Joyce Garnett, University Librarian Emeritus, Western University
Madeleine Lefebvre, Chief Librarian, Ryerson University
Marie DeYoung, University Librarian, Saint Mary's University
Pierre Gamache, Director General, Published Heritage Branch, Library and Archives Canada
Alexandra Freeland, Director, Information Management Services Directorate, Knowledge Management, National Research Council
Gwen Ebbett, Dean of Libraries, University of Windsor
Brenda Mathenia, University Librarian, Thompson Rivers University
Danielle Chagnon, Directrice générale de la Grande Bibliothèque, BAnQ
Debbie Schachter, Director, Learning Resources, Douglas College (afternoon)
Daniel Boivin, Executive Director, OCLC Canada, Latin America & the Caribbean
Bruce Crocco, Vice-President, Library Services for the Americas, OCLC


Rob Favini, Member Relations Liaison, OCLC
Nic Valentini, Product Manager, OCLC
Jean Godby, Senior Research Scientist, OCLC

Submitted Agenda:

  1. Opening of the meeting and agenda approval
  2. Review the minutes of the April 7th, 2016 Meeting
  3. Update on the Americas Regional Council (ARC) and discussion about the next Global Council (GC) agenda
  4. OCLC enterprise / Canadian division year in review and update
  5. Brainstorming on the Canadian library landscape (new areas of investment in technology, services, programs, new ways libraries are engaging with their communities, etc.) and implications to OCLC
  6. Shared Print initiatives at OCLC
  7. BIBFRAME, link data and implications for libraries
  8. Review of the OCAC Charter
  9. Future Member Forums in Canada and OCLC Canada Symposium
  10. Other business
  11. End of the meeting

1. Opening of the meeting and agenda approval

  • Ms. Schachter started the meeting and two suggestions were made:
    • IFLA 2016: what were OCLC’s benefits? 
      • This point was added to the OCLC Update portion of the agenda.
    • Have Ms. Chagnon briefly describe the recently released « Déclaration des bibliothèques québécoises » as this is a significant milestone for libraries in Quebec. 
      • This point was added to the “Other business” portion of the agenda.

2. Review the minutes of the April 7th, 2016 Meeting (update, questions)

  • It was requested to remove the 2nd and 4th bullets in point 3 as it was not meant to be published openly.
  • Correct in bullet 5 what says “…last Asian…” to “…last Asia Pacific…”.
  • Modify Ms. Ebbett’s title in the attendees to “Dean of Libraries”.
  • The minutes are approved with these corrections.

3. Update on the ARC and discussion about the next GC agenda

  • Mr. Favini gave some history about the GC upcoming proposed changes going back as far as when it was called Member Councils.  GC has been in existence for 6 years.  It had little revisions since then, i.e. mostly regarding the number of “in person” meetings versus conference calls but since then, nothing had been modified.  It is in 2015 that many delegates questioned their roles on GC.  There was a general feeling that they could do more for the cooperative.  At the end of the 2015 November meeting, certain delegates were tasked to review some of the proposed changes that were introduced.  It is in April 2016 that these delegates brought to the GC a working document for review. 
  • GC meets in April and Nov. so since last April, there have been some “spirited” discussions and ARC has been very active in the process.  It is worth noting that this is not a process that is coming from OCLC but OCLC helps with the legal required adjustments and modifications through its own legal services.
  • The delegates involved with these changes have had a number of Webinars to inform GC delegates.  They also had a meeting during IFLA.  They definitely tried to have a lot of dialogue with delegates so for the upcoming November GC meeting, everybody should be informed and could vote on the motions (Mr. Favini admitted that it might be a little harder for the new delegates with less background though).
  • With these proposed changes, they are trying to do three things:  a) better communicate with members, b) have greater ties with the Board of Trustees, c) better define the delegate’s role on GC.
  • In relation with these discussions at GC, Mr. Favini moved on to briefly explain what does the OCLC Members’ Relations do.  One of their roles is to visit and meet with new GC delegates when possible so that these new delegates feel more comfortable when they get to their first GC meeting.  They also reach out to alternates so they too stay involved and understand better what is going on.  This group at OCLC will soon have a Web site to refer delegates to and where documentation will be posted for reference.
  • Ms. Schachter then talked about ARC and her role as secretary.  She indicated that ARC is charged with improving communications with delegates in the various regions.  There are also two tasks forces working on:  a) bylaws (4 persons) and b) implementation (4 persons).  She indicated that some of the discussions so far has been around the fact that ARC does not seem to be as cohesive as a group as the other Regional Councils.  Thus, they were discussing if ARC needs to meet at other time than during ALA and it appears this is what might happen in 2017.
  • Mr. Crocco added that one of the challenges is that there are many opportunities for GC delegates to get together in the US and Canada, while in EMEA for example, they do not have this due to the number of countries covered and having an OCLC event facilitates this kind of “get together”.
  • Mr. Favini clarified that the Member Forums are not designed to play the governance role GC and ARC has with members as it goes more into the various OCLC solutions and services.  He confirmed that ARC is trying to put together in the Americas one of these “CrossRoads Event” meetings like the other Regional Councils have.  One challenge they currently have is the “blackhole” requirement around ALA as nothing should “compete” with ALA.   They are working at securing a date and a place and if they can do this, the first ARC meeting apart from ALA will be confirmed for 2017.   It is clear that this will not be at OCLC Dublin, Ohio, to “break it” from the main office and be closer to the members.  As it stands, it seems that the ideal model, despite the differences between the three councils (historical, growth, etc.) would be to “mimic” success observed from the two others. 
  • Ms. Payette suggested to not call this a conference or member event of some sort but make it sound like these will be “working days” or “user meetings”.  Her point is that it should be presented as time spent “working” on something “unique” and not something just like another conference because many librarians are allowed “financially” to only attend one conference per year.  So, the “wording” of these future meeting might help get more people to attend if it was seen as a “specialized type of event”.  This is why library staff can more easily go to “user group meetings” often offered by ILS companies, for example.
  • Ms. Ebbett then emphasized the need to be clear as to who ARC was targeting to come to these meetings.  She believes this will be required if ARC wants to attract a larger number of people.  And, she adds, “being focused helps organizing these events”.
  • Mr. Favini concluded this portion with a brief talked on the upcoming GC and ARC elections for 2017.  Oct. 26th was the deadline to submit candidate’ names.  Seventy-two nominations for ARC were received and in those, five were from Canada:  two from publics, two from academics and one ARL.  The GC nominating committee will work at the November meeting to select the final list of candidates for the election.  There are nine open positions and one position for chair, for a total of ten.  Voting will open on February 1st, 2017 and we will know on March 27 who the elected candidates are.

4. OCLC enterprise / Canadian division year in review and update

  • Mr. Crocco started with the update on the corporation and Mr. Boivin followed with an update on what happened in Canada during the last fiscal year. 
  • IFLA was a success for OCLC.  Not only did OCLC had nearly 800 attendees to its reception at the new atrium (300 over what was originally planned), we also had numerous satellite meetings on campus the week preceding the conference.  Many librarians were also invited to tour the OCLC office, “meet with WorldCat”, and see our computing facilities.  It was definitely a great way to expose OCLC to many librarians that will possibly never have had the chance to come to the campus.
  • Some of the key Canadian news shared were that:
    • BAnQ loaded 2,2 million records in WorldCat where 800,000 were originals;
    • New members from large libraries/groups joined the cooperative and from various library types such as:  Toronto District School Board, Okanagan Regional Library and the Mississauga Public Library.
    • The new OCLC SCS services is getting traction in Canada as in addition to COPPUL, Novanet and the Univ. of Montreal recently started using it with the GreenGlass software;
    • The 3 Awards for “Innovations in libraries” supported by OCLC Canada were won by the Bibliothèque publique Côte Saint-Luc, the Kitchener Public Library and the Edmonton Public Library.
    • Worth noting from Canadian libraries:
      • There are currently 370 active cataloguing members;
      • 122,395,019 holdings in WC;
      • 10,167,009 unique records in WorldCat
      • 12,370,273 original records were added over the years to WorldCat
      • 703,732 users were referred back to a Canadian library catalogue through Web exposure of their metadata and the utilization of linked data in WorldCat.
  • Mr. Gamache took the opportunity, when a mention about the current discussions between OCLC and LAC-BAC was noted, to provide an update regarding the replacement of AMICUS and their local ILS.  It is now expected to have a signed agreement before the end of 2016.

5. Brainstorming on the Canadian library landscape (new areas of investment in technology, services, programs, new ways libraries are engaging with their communities, etc.) and implications to OCLC

  • The update on the discussion between OCLC and LAC-BAC as well as AMICUS linked the group well to this topic.  A brief exchange then took place regarding access to information and privacy as this was a key element of the current discussions between the two organizations moving forward.
  • Ms. Ebbett thanked OCLC for having the Executive Director of SCS spoke at the IATUL Conference in Halifax as she felt this was one of the best sessions provided and that Mr. Lugg was sensitive to not make it too salesy.  She also added that many libraries are struggling with how to manage “research data” and all the related elements associated with it (access, protection, security, etc.).  She feels that this definitely needs to be done better than how libraries are handling the bibliographic data right now (MARC format).  Ms. Ebbett indicated that libraries are building the infrastructure to manage research data and it will be interesting to see what role OCLC will play in that “arena” in the future.  
  • Ms. Lefebvre indicated that the CARL meeting was right after GC and that the “Portage Network” project (https://portagenetwork.ca/) is on their agenda.  This touches on research data and this will use UBC’s searching platform. She sees a role for OCLC in this as libraries need a “model” to continue expanding/growing with this project.  This is still at the very beginning stage but she sees this as something that will keep on growing as research data is a growing concern for libraries and universities.  Actually, there are 4 or 5 nodes in Ontario and 125 researchers have loaded data in “their basket” (which represents 628 datasets).  Chuck Humphrey is the Executive Director of Portage and he is located at the U of Alberta.  Associated with this is the preservation factor and the persistent access.  These remain a challenge and should continue being addressed.
  • Another topic that was brought up is the Collaborative Futures Project with 18 libraries involved.  The U of T, Ryerson Univ. and the Royal Military College have stepped out.  OCUL is looking at one shared platform and they got provincial funding for the feasibility study.  There are apparently a lot of working groups and Webinars about this right now.
  • Ms. Chagnon said they are interested in finding out more about “user experiences”.  Users seem to want something else than the space, books, and the usual found in libraries.  She feels that if libraries do not adjust, they will lose some of these “new” users.  They are at BAnQ trying to find out what would this differentiating factor be, what different “experience” could be provided and this is why she brought up this topic.  They are looking at start-ups and asking them what would they do, what would they offer if this was their company/organization?  How would they reinvent it if this was a commercial service?  They are trying to get a different angle as to what could be provided from a library since these individuals have a “fresh view” at libraries.
  • M. Lefebvre said that as a board member of a local public library, that library currently works with a merchandizing person so they can reconsider shelving and making it more attractive, like they do in stores.
  • Ms. Payette then said that a library in the Netherlands has done something comparable where they have identified areas providing “energy”, relaxation, etc.
  • Ms. Mathenia said that they are not going to move to a new library but using / renovating their “old space” instead.  They are also posing a lot of questions in the process as they are finding out that for their community, the collection is a “minor factor” with the Internet being available everywhere.  Space is key on their campus.  They are also constrained by their IT department and resources (for time, space, personnel).  Their virtual presence is very minimal and it needs to be improved.
  • Mr. Crocco then reminded the Council to think at possibly using our Research office.  They do not go into product development necessarily but they can help with further researching areas less known or with less data and information.
  • Ms. Ebbett indicated that their users are not approaching the library through Web page as much now.  Instead, they are growingly coming through Apps developed by the library.  Ms Lefebvre indicated that one of the popular App used at Ryerson University is called “BookFinder” and with it, students do not need to learn LC classification.  The goal is as always to be convenient and make life easier for students.
  • Consolidation of the back office is on NRC’s radar and open source / open access as well said Ms. Freeland.  Both topics keep coming back and positioning the library as a key player for the “open” agenda is important for them right now.  In this comment, she is also referring to the Canada Open License/data portal.
  • General comment shared: “Next generation of users and librarians have a different view of the world.  They are very much focused on openness, sharing and diversity.   OCLC will need to find ways to reach out to them."

6. Shared Print initiatives at OCLC

  • Mr. Valentini from OCLC then presented on OCLC’s initiative regarding Shared Print.  The presentation will be posted on the portal.  In summary:
    • SCS + GreenGlass is 1st piece to the puzzle;
    • 2nd piece is registering the retention commitment into WorldCat.  This capability is due at OCLC in 2017.
    • 3rd piece is Discovery / Access of that retention commitment information.

7. BIBFRAME, link data and implications for libraries

8. Review of the OCAC Charter

  • Ms. Lefebvre indicated being appreciative of staying on OCAC assuming she does not infringe any “policies” once on the OCLC Board of Trustees.
  • No changes are required at this time.

9. Future Member Forums in Canada and OCLC Canada Symposium

  • A discussion took place and it is proposed that OCAC next in person meeting be around the future ARC meeting if something is scheduled for fall 2017 and not at OCLC.
  • If OCAC does this, OCLC Canada could then plan for a member forum on its own in early 2018.  Cities for that next forum for considerations should be: Montréal, Ottawa, Edmonton and Calgary.

10. Other business

11. Next meeting

  • Mr. Boivin will send a “Doodle” for the Spring Conference Call and the fall meeting if dates for ARC are now early in January.
Actions required before the next meeting Responsibility
Post both presentations on the OCAC Portal. Daniel Boivin
Dates for next meetings using Doodle. Daniel Boivin