Research and Learning Agenda for Archives, Special, and Distinctive Collections in Research Libraries

by Chela Scott Weber


Written by Chela Scott Weber, Practitioner Researcher in Residence for the OCLC Research Library Partnership (RLP), this position paper was created with the input of dozens of RLP members and is intended as a map for OCLC with many potential routes for further exploration and engagement with allied institutions.

This research and learning agenda represents the latest in a long line of OCLC Research efforts on behalf of archives and special collections in research libraries, to discern and respond to current and emerging needs in the community, and to convene colleagues across the profession to collectively move the profession forward. It is practitioner focused and represents the results of numerous conversations, reading broadly, and thinking carefully about the most pressing needs that face our collective collections and operations. The agenda addresses areas of inquiry and potential research and learning opportunities, building on recent work in the profession.

Several themes and topical areas of investigation are identified, and the paper presents potential research and learning activities for each of these areas. Ultimately, using this agenda, the RLP will consider where work is already being done in the profession, how OCLC can best leverage its strengths and resources to make the most impact, and where there is interest and energy across the RLP community, in order to discern where it makes most sense for OCLC to focus its efforts.

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Suggested citation:

Weber, Chela Scott. 2017. Research and Learning Agenda for Archives, Special, and Distinctive Collections in Research Libraries. Dublin, OH: OCLC Research.


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