JUN 25

ALA Virtual - Circulating Optimism: How Library Workers Have Shifted Rapidly to Engage and Assist their Communities

In this session with OCLC Research, learn how libraries have strengthened community by connecting, collaborating, and supporting each other amid a tumultuous and ever-shifting landscape.

This event has passed. View the recording below.


Rachel Frick, Executive Director, OCLC Research Library Partnership
Merrilee Proffitt, Senior Manager, OCLC Research Library Partnership
Sharon Streams, Director of WebJunction and OCLC Project Director of REALM
Lynn Silipigni Connaway, Director of Library Trends and User Research


A Library Champions Spotlight Session sponsored by OCLC. Digital handout available here: oc.lc/alavirtualcitations

In a recent convening, one Research Library Partner quoted Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton: "Optimism is true moral courage." Through our library networks at OCLC, we see this optimism in action as libraries respond to the global health crisis, think about the future of libraries and library services, and find new opportunities to engage with their communities. In sharing these stories of resilience, innovation, compassion, and community, we hope to provide support for library staff as they adapt to rapidly changing environments. 

More specifically, we will share how we have seen libraries of all types strive to: 

Adapt: How are libraries planning and adapting for the future? REALM Project, OCLC’s partnership with IMLS and Battelle, is providing research-based guidelines for recommended reopening practices in response to COVID-19

Share: As keepers of cultural memory, how are libraries collecting information, oral history, and other objects about the COVID-19 pandemic to share with current and future generations? CONTENTdm Community Center is connecting libraries that are collecting stories from the pandemic

Learn: How have professional development and workflow processes been impacted by library closures and working from home? As the learning place for libraries, WebJunction has supported a surge in online learners and time spent learning during COVID-19 library closures

Connect: How do we connect to, learn from, engage with, and support each other? Research Library Partnership programs, such as SHARES, the Research Support Interest Group, and the Metadata Managers Focus Group have convened regular discussions and town halls for academic library staff to share experiences, adaptations to services, and transformations to workflow processes

Innovate: What does the future of library services and operations look like post-pandemic? OCLC Research is talking to library leaders to identify their visions for the new model library that will emerge as they look at opportunities for converting their short-term responses to the COVID-19 pandemic into positive, long-term change.


25 June 2020


2:15 PM – 3:00 PM
Eastern Daylight Time, North America [UTC -4]

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ALA Virtual Conference