Category Archives: Uncategorized

Scotland’s Digital Strategy

Scotland’s refreshed Digital Strategy was launched on 22 March by Cabinet Secretary for Finance & Constitution, Derek MacKay MSP at an event in Tontine House, Glasgow.

“The strategy sets out the Scottish Government’s vision for Scotland as a vibrant, inclusive, open and outwards looking digital nation and describes the actions we collectively need to take to ensure that Scotland anticipates and reacts positively to the changing opportunities the digital age presents.”

Information literacy per se may only be mentioned once (see extract below) but our take on the digital skills mentioned throughout the document includes not only being able to work online using technology, but also critical thinking skills, information search skills, skills to inform decision making as well as understanding privacy, security and keeping safe online.

“Digital allows information to be transmitted faster and further than ever before, enabling us to develop new communities of interest and opening up new opportunities for education, commerce, creativity, friendship and leisure. In doing so however, it raises new challenges around security, information literacy and privacy”.

Jenny Foreman
March 24, 2017

Information Literacy Symposium. 18th November 2016, Glasgow

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) and The Right Information, the Scottish Information Literacy Community of Practice hosted a Digital and Information Literacy Symposium examining the relevance of digital and information literacy in relation to health, education, housing, employability and welfare reform. The central theme was how we ensure equality of access to information across the country and reduce the gap between the information rich and information poor.


SLIC has uploaded the presentations and curated tweets from the symposium. Here is our summary of the day:

Information Literacy in Impoverished Circumstances: Insights from information Behaviour Research
Dr Steven Buchanan, Head of Information Science (iLab) Research Group & Director of PG Teaching, University of Strathclyde
Steven described the research iLab is conducting in a range of groups including:

  • Information seeking behaviours of young mothers
  • Information behaviours of disadvantaged and disengaged adolescents

However, Steven pointed out that iLab research suggests that we need to review how public libraries meet the information needs of people in disadvantaged and disengaged circumstances, and develop core literacy skills. An action-oriented interdisciplinary approach (bringing together academia and practitioners) should support this work.

Information Literacy in the Health Sector
Annette Thain, Manager Knowledge Services, NHS Education for Scotland
@athain @nesknowledge
Annette took us through a wide range of resources in the NHSScotland Knowledge Network that support health literacy. Health literacy was defined as people having enough knowledge, understanding, skills and confidence to use health information, to be active partners in their care, and to navigate the health and social care systems. These resources include:

Clinical librarian and outreach librarian roles involve carrying out information sourcing on behalf of health professionals. Generally the librarian is part of the clinical team and must work quickly and accurately to find relevant research evidence and other information so that care and treatment can be decided on. This is an expanding role in the health information professional workforce and research has shown that clinical/health librarians do make a difference to the quality of care be enabling health care staff to:

  • Be effective and safe practitioners
  • Work as part of a multidisciplinary team
  • Help patients and the public gain the skills and ability to find, understand and apply health information as and when required to do so

It was interesting to hear results of NHS Education for Scotland research which showed 75% of health staff surveyed would ask Google before asking colleagues. One final tip which I’ll be checking out was how to bookmark tweets you like by linking your Twitter account to your Diigo account.

Digitally Agile National Principles
Liz Green, Senior Development Officer, YouthLink Scotland
@lizfmgreen @digitallyagile
Liz explained the work of the Digitally Agile Community Learning and Development Project. This focused on the 3 phases of the Digitally Agile National Principles – a national framework of guiding principles for the use of digital technology and social media in community learning and development.

The 9 principles have been designed to be used and adapted by anyone who feels that focus and clarity is needed in digital technology and social media learning. The principles are of particular importance to those working in organisations and services from the statutory, voluntary and community sectors .  Those working in this area work with some of the most disadvantaged groups in society.  The principles are easily related to everyday practical teaching and can help those disadvantaged groups increase their digital literacy and improve their lives.

It was also interesting to hear of the other work YouthLink Scotland is involved with. This includes:

  • The Digital Youth Network – a network for practitioners who are using digital tools and online spaces in their work with young people
  • 5Rights – takes the existing rights of children and young people (under 18) and articulates them for the digital world
  • LGBT Youth Scotland which now offers an anonymous live chat service around a range of topics i.e. sexting
  • #notwithoutme project – engaging and building young people’s digital literacy

Digital Learning & Cultural Practice
Dr Cristina Costa, Lecturer in Technology Enhanced Learning, University of Strathclyde
New networking cultures are emerging as more and more people engage digitally.  Working and communicating digitally is changing some of the fundamental ways people connect, interact, share, and work. A new networking culture appears to be evolving as a result. It is increasing vital that new forms of engagement are put in to practice in all areas of working life and at home. The world is a very competitive place to live and work and it is therefore important to keep up to date with developments and advancements in terms of collaboration, personal and professional development. The technology has to become more than a tool, it must become an enabler, a concept and a mind-set. The aim being to allow us to become knowledgeable  in digital literacies in order to becoming knowledge able and apply new skills in our everyday lives.  Aiming to have the confidence to create, evaluate, analyse and apply these new skills.

Cristina then described the digital learning and teaching strategy for Scotland in 4 quadrants, highlighting its relevance to each:

  • Develop Skills – Educators, Skills and Confidence
  • Improve Access – Learners, Access
  • Empower – Leaders, Drive Innovation
  • Enhance – Curriculum and Assessment

Cristina developed this by explaining the importance of critical digital literacy. By applying these skills we can recognise the Internet as a place to access knowledge networks. The skills also allow us to use free online tools like Wikipedia – but take them at face value. Users also need to be aware that employers may now routinely Google for information about applicants to find out more about them. This is one reason why we should all be aware of our digital identity (persona) and what we say online.

One key message we took away from this session was to try and mirror users’ online behaviours when providing information online. So if they’re used to searching trip advisor – try and present information in a similar format.

Basic Digital Skills & Information Literacy
Beth Murphy, One Digital Project Officer, Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations
@betty_murphy @digiscot
Beth gave a very clear and interesting presentation on the work SCVO is doing to tackle inequality by equipping individuals with basic digital skills. SCVO’s One Digital initiative was also highlighted.

Having the skills to apply our knowledge of digital skills in every aspect of daily life, particularly in the workplace we must be able to find, evaluate, use and manage information that is valued by employers.  We must be confident when working online and be able to know which information we can trust to ensure that it is fit for purpose.    Once we have source our information and selected the appropriate material we must be able to keep up to date with any further developments.  We must think about our digital presence – be safe and ensure that we bear in mind that anyone can put information on the web , emphasising the importance of selecting appropriate material or evidence to help support decision making.

Beth then focused on the Basic Digital Skills Framework – a really valuable resource which can be used by individuals and organisations to help people to assess and develop their digital skills. Another resource worth checking out is Doteveryone. Created by Martha Lane Fox to understand and address the moral and social challenges the Internet presents, in order to help make life fairer and simpler for everyone in the UK. Beth finished by outlining SCVO’s future plans which include:

Meet The Hackers
Gerry Grant and Adam Rapley, Ethical Hacking Consultants, Scottish Business Resilience Centre
The best session I’ve ever attended on cyber security – Gerry and Adam’s entertaining reality check on cyber security had many attendees vowing they were going to update passwords and be more aware about protecting their data.

The Scottish Business Resilience Centre offers business services including security assessments, footprinting (finding someone’s digital footprint) and training on cyber security. There is more information on this in SBRC’s resources. They presented many tips to help us secure our data – some of which we hadn’t considered before:

  • Always back up your data
  • Never click a link on an email unless you know who it’s from and what it is. Mouseover the sender to reveal the email address it came from.
  • System updates matter – always take the upgrade when prompted
  • Use strong alpha-numeric passwords and include symbols. A space also counts as symbol – though very few people use it
  • Use different password for different accounts
  • Or use passphrases instead of a passwords. These are harder for hackers to find and may be easier for you to remember. An example of creating and remembering a good passphrase
  • Also consider password managers such as Lastpass and 1password
  • Use two factor authentication when offered – e.g. Google accounts
  • Check the privacy settings on your social media accounts
  • Be aware that social media accounts are totally public by default, and can include personal details such as your location unless you make them private (or at least turn location off)
  • Be wary when using free public wifi. You could be connecting to a fake wifi network hackers have set up to intercept your data. Make sure the URL of the wifi network starts with https. Turn off wifi and click on forget network when you’re finished using it
  • Use to find wifi networks


Paul Gray and Morag Higgison
December 6, 2016

CILIPS Autumn Gathering. 20th October 2016, Glasgow

Always a highlight of my work calendar, this year’s Autumn Gathering was a full and varied day with plenty of interest to this government librarian.  And of course a great place to meet those colleagues I’ve only worked with via phone or email over the year.

CILIPS has uploaded some presentations and photos from the conference and there was plenty of Tweetage to get a sense of what the hot topics were. Here are my key points from the day:

Keynote talk on ‘Library as Third Place’ – Diane Bruxvoort, University of Aberdeen Librarian and Director
Wikipedia defines Third Place as the social surroundings separate from the two usual social environments of home (“first place”) and the workplace (“second place”). Examples of third places would be environments such as cafes, clubs or parks.  Diane explained how the Sir Duncan Rice Library opened in 2012 has embraced the concept of a library as third place.

To achieve this the library is open 24/7, designed to be a low stress place and one of interaction. Staff have also redesigned some services such as inter-library loans to make them easier for students to access.  Unpretentious and playful and a home from home to a diverse population.  It also plays host to student societies and community groups.

Diane explained these changes are not revolutionary. They are attitudinal, cultural and pervasive and library staff must innovate and adapt to continue developing the library as a 3rd place.  Though it does represent a cultural change and challenge for library staff.

Free for all: open licensing at the National Library of Scotland – Gill Hamilton, Digital Access Manager, National Library of Scotland
Open licensing allows people to reuse your content and redistribute under the same licence you used.  The NLS has done this using Creative Commons licences.  Gill explained NLS’s approach to open licensing was ad hoc:

  • NLS content digitised by the Internet Archive  – licensed under Creative Commons
  • NLS out of copyright images made available via Flickr Commons
  • Europeana – NLS contributed content to these collections

There was inconsistency in metadata and licences and access, and moral issues around applying copyright on digitised works where the originals are out of copyright.  Legislation came in that helped remove barriers and improve access, and in 2014 NLS introduced a licensing policy and streamlined down to 3 Creative Commons licences.  The policy was introduced making content open to all, and now part of the role of the NLS Wikimedian in Residence is to push to make more content open.

Coding in Libraries – Dr. Martin Goodfellow, Coder in Residence, Glasgow Life
Martin gave a very interesting overview of this work from its start 4 years ago to date.  He began by explaining the process of coding can help you in other areas of life and recommended Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions.

This work is about teaching young people in Glasgow how to use technology in digital making classes through CoderDojo in 12 clubs in Glasgow. Held in public libraries and using libraries PCs. These have been very popular and have waiting lists.  Martin also assured us you don’t need to know about coding to run one. Just be enthusiastic and happy to work with young people.

Dojos cover basic programming languages Scratch and Python aswell as web technologies, cyber security, physical computing (equipment such as a Raspberry Pi).  Apart from the physical equipment all the tools used are open source and accessed through a browser.

Some of the initiatives include participating in National Coding Week on 19/9/16, the Hour of Code project, coding music using Sonic Pi as part of Celtic Connections, Wee write! – coding for creative writing and Build it Scotland using SketchUp and printing 3D models created on Minecraft.

Glasgow Life is planning to set up clubs in all Glasgow public libraries and introduce to school libraries.  However clubs do need volunteers to run them, but Martin explained the work he does talking and presenting about Glasgow Life’s coding projects encourages volunteers to come forward – especially from colleges and universities.

Decade of Commemorations programme – Ann Duffy and Linda Ming, Northern Ireland Libraries
Based in the Mellon Centre for Migration Studies this was a very powerful and fascinating insight into Northern Ireland Libraries programme – a decade of commemorations from 1912 to 1921.

Financed by the Together: Building a United Community fund it includes exhibitions, talks, displays, workshops, drama and music telling story of Ireland’s past and it’s shared heritage.  Bringing people together, creating discussion in an inclusive and respectful way.  Just one example of this is a reader development project – 2 cities 1 book. Bringing readers groups in Belfast and Dublin together.

I don’t think I’ve seen such a shining demonstration of the positive role libraries play in community life.  Anyone wanting to discover more about some of this work should check out The Library Men of WW1 and Living Legacies 1914-18.

Although acknowledging some political, cultural and religious barriers remain, Ann and Linda described how the programme has resulted in greater community engagement and increased footfall in libraries with communities talking together and opportunities for them to work together.  It’s good to hear another 5 years of commemorations are planned.

Information Literacy in Scotland – Cleo Jones and Jenny Foreman, The Information Literacy Community of Practice
The Information Literacy Community of Practice (IL CoP) is an online community of practice which is open to everyone both within and outside the information profession, primarily in Scotland but also elsewhere. It is for anyone who is interested in information literacy and associated skills and competencies.

This workshop introduced delegates to the IL CoP and how it is working to progress the Scottish Government’s Smarter Strategic Objective and SLIC’s strategy for Public Libraries in Scotland 2015-2020 focusing on 5 of the strategy’s strategic aims:

  • Reading, literacy and learning
  • Digital inclusion
  • Economic wellbeing
  • Social wellbeing
  • Culture and creativity

Delegates were then asked to provide examples of how libraries are helping to achieve each of these aims using a ‘speed dating’ format.  I have a declared interest here as a member of the IL CoP  I helped facilitate the workshop – and it was fast and furious with lots of examples for IL CoP members to collate.  It was personally really exciting to hear all the work libraries are doing to achieve these aims and we hope to share the results soon.  In the meantime please check out the workshop presentation.

Final keynote – Libraries, Scottish Book Trust and key national agendas – Marc Lambert, CEO, Scottish Book Trust
For me, a key message of the conference was how libraries underpin culture and Marc summed that up perfectly.  Starting with asking if the Chauvet cave paintings could be considered a library, then moving to Scotland’s first lending library at Innerpeffray before describing what the Scottish Book Trust is doing now through Bookbug and the First Minister’s Reading Challenge to contribute to SLIC’s strategy for Public Libraries in Scotland 2015-2020.

Marc pointed out these programmes are funded by the Scottish Government and national ambitions should motivate us to develop literacy skills.

Marc also stated the role of libraries in 21st century still needs to be addressed and asked what kind of collaboration between government, the Scottish Book Trust, SLIC and others will be needed in future to deliver programmes.

Paul Gray
October 23, 2016

Making Connections – CILIPS Conference. 6th-7th June 2016, Dundee

The CILIPS annual conference is always a great networking event, with a great diversity of events.  This year was no exception and please do check out the conference presentations and talks.

I attended the conference on 6th June.  Here are my key bullet points from that day:

Keynote 1: Colin Cook, Digital Public Services and Business Transformation, Scottish Government

  • People have to overcome reluctance of using Internet to gain more of what is on offer – e.g. public services.
  • 82% of scots have Internet access, and highest level of digital skills in UK.
  • Scottish Government’s integrated digital strategy. Investing in infrastructure – super fast broadband to everyone in lifetime of the current session of the Scottish Parliament.
  • Invested in digital skills training. In future Librarians need to understand how to code inc. civil servants. We all need a high level of digital skills.
  • Participation. SLIC strategy for libraries highlights participation and the Scottish Government supports digital participation charter. Scottish Government should lead by example by ensuring its staff have a basic level of digital skills.
  • 3rd sector leading on this and this work is a vital part of tackling inequality – i.e. access to services. If we don’t, we reinforce inequalities. Michael Foreman has done research in this and has written about role of libraries to support this.
  • How libraries fit in – public wifi access, help accessing Internet and digital skills and information literacy and building confidence. Libraries need to role model digital skills.
  • Digital world has implications for everyone. Digital ecosystem – identifying common processes for digital services so we can spend more resource adding value at the front line.
  • Digital skills important for democratic engagement i.e. independence referendum campaign.

Stewart Bain, Orkney libraries. Twitter Tips @orkneylibrary

  • Orkney has 2 libraries and a mobile library
  • Joined Twitter in June 09
  • Tweets should have a Human voice – don’t be dull
  • Library users used Twitter to ask Orkney libraries questions
  • Use what you have and get staff involved. People like to see behind the scenes.
  • Hard to judge what will be popular
  • Be culturally aware, and aware of what’s on the news to get users’ interest
  • Friendly rivalry with Shetland Library – Orkney’s Twitter account was verified before Shetland’s
  • Use polling and emojis
  • Promote library events – gets people in and they discover what else you do
  • JK Rowling followed Orkney Libraries on Twitter, then came to their book club. 2.9m impressions on Twitter when she came.
  • Other authors came for Scottish Book Week
  • Finally, Snapchat and Whatsapp aren’t quite mainstream in libraries yet. A good time for a Library to start doing something similar with these.

Jenny Peachy, Senior Policy Officer, Carnegie UK Trust
Carnegie Library Lab case study – Digital Toybox

  • Carnegie UK is re-engaging with libraries
  • Library lab – funding package to start an innovative project in your library.  Now on second cohort

David Hayden, Acting Partnership and Information Manager, City of Edinburgh Libraries

  • Digital toyboxes in Edinburgh Central Library
  • Applied for £12k to run this, plus mentor support, online learning and collaborating with partners.
  • Inspiration from Makerspaces
  • Develop stronger links with high schools
  • Each bit of equipment easy to use and found staff to engage with it. Contents needed to be different, never seen in the library before and capture kids attention. Staff had to learn how it worked – using the toolkit – and mentor meetings.
  • Pilot sessions – rolled it our as 6 boxes, each on a different theme. Rotating 4 week plan, but became a logistical challenge. The boxes contain:
  • Electronic bits – from
  • UP! Mini 3D Printer
  • Lego Mindstorms – for coding
  • Synth kits (music) from
  • Engaged over 500 kids in schools, clubs and various festivals. Mini maker clubs in 3 libraries and encouraged problem solving skills. Kids also encouraged to use BBC build it Scotland – inc. building landmarks in Minecraft.
  • Reflections – fear of freedom, required mentor support, image is important to kids as is personal development.
  • Check out the Ideas Box too. Used by libraries in refugee camps.
  • There’s also a static Makerspace in Edinburgh to develop innovation across Edinburgh libraries and expand knowledge sharing across Edinburgh.  The target age range is 12-16, mostly 12 and 13.

Tesco Bank Summer reading challenge Scotland

  • An initiative from Tesco Bank and supported by the Reading Agency.
  • Literacy levels of children improved, sometimes outperforming peers after taking this 6 book challenge. Solus provided an app to deliver this which is launching this year.

Keynote 2: James Robertson – The news where you are: culture and libraries in Scotland in the 21st Century

James’ closing keynote was very insightful and entertaining.  One stand-out point he made was as newspaper circulation crashes, more than ever people need skills to appraise the information they see from other news sources.

Paul Gray
July 20, 2016

7 new eLearning courses from the Scottish Government Library

New resources from the SQA

Digital Learner Guides
Anyone interested in the Scottish Government’s Digital Participation work may be interested to know the SQA have developed a suite of 19 training videos to help people with some common online activities from carrying out a search to using social media, playing games, booking tickets, shopping and more.

Check them out at

Ushare is a collection of links to open learning resources that have been recommended by lecturers, teachers, training providers and learners that support SQA’s qualifications.  Includes a wide range of subjects including adult literacies.

Paul Gray
April 7, 2016

Internet Librarian International. 20th-21st October, London

Neil Lynch and myself attended this year’s Internet Librarian International conference.  This is one of my favourite conferences.  Hearing about innovations first-hand from librarians from around the world is always interesting and gives me ideas on how our own library could do things differently.  Every year there’s always new themes which form part of the conference buzz.  This year, for me, that theme was libraries need to provide what users want or they will simply go elsewhere, leaving libraries facing a very uncertain future.  Liz McGettigan and others gave excellent presentations on what this actually means for libraries – principally a radical replacing of traditional service delivery with new technology based services.

Paul & Neil at ILI2015

Neil (R) and Paul (L) at ILI2015

That’s my very brief conference ‘takeaway’.  Read on if you wish to read the summaries, presentations and my key points from the sessions I attended.  You can also check out the conference programme and this archive of conference Tweets.

Day 1

Keynote: Knowledge is Beautiful
David McCandless @mccandelish
 Author of 2 books. @infoisbeautiful and Knowledge is Beautiful.

  • Visualising data helps you see connections and patterns you didn’t see before.  Big data describes large amounts of data that can be mined for information.  Data is the new oil.  Visualised information has incredible potential to help us quickly understand, navigate and find meaning in a complex world.
  • 9 from 10 users use same password across all sites.
  • 5% use password as a password.
  • Linked info isn’t knowledge.  David created a range of live dataviz that update as the source data is updated.
  • Dataviz elements all must have meaning. Not just for design ie 3D.
  • What radical changes happen when we have to ask big questions about ourselves and our services? The Libraries Taskforce was established in 2015 in response to the Independent Library Report for England. Its remit is “to provide leadership; to implement the recommendations of the Report and to help reinvigorate the public library service in England”.

Dynamic disruption: inventing the new library
Liz McGettigan @lizmcgettigan
Confronted with huge competition libraries must redefine themselves, their services and their business models. The future is not just about adapting to the information explosion, but about co-creating and making the library a more active space of knowledge creation. This session explored innovative technologies, tools and apps, new designs and showed how they are capturing new audiences and influencing budget holders.

  • Libraries always faced disruption. Public libraries failed to capitalise on people’s network to have a uk wide integrated library platform. Mobiles are most popular platform for info consumption. Find out more about the SOLUS app.
  • Self service means staff are in the library helping users rather than stuck behind the service desk where self-service issue machines are being used instead.
  • Public libraries must become digital hubs.  I.e. librarians helping with big data.
  • Learning is changing. I.e. interactive video. What has the library got for me in 1 to 2 years time?
  • Need creative leaders. Interactivity in learning and accessing information. I.e. touch screen. 3D printing, gaming inc. treasure hunts, augmented reality, robotics, Occulus Rift, cloud computing, i-beacon, AI.  Analytics – turn that data into knowledge to customise the customer experience.
  • We are in an information tsunami. Competition is fierce. Online services compete for users attention.
  • The future? Drive-in libraries. Libraries without books.
  • Popup elibrary, where users can access books through lots of screens.
  • Cre8 – a pop up library space. To encourage creativity amongst younger people. Winner of library change lives award 2014.
  • Incremental change not enough. Radical change is needed if libraries are to meet the challenges ahead. Disrupt or be disrupted.
  • Future of libraries must focus on giving users what they want.

Radical thinking for library services
What radical changes happen when we have to ask big questions about ourselves and our services? The Libraries Taskforce was established in 2015 in response to the Independent Library Report for England. Its remit is “to provide leadership; to implement the recommendations of the Report and to help reinvigorate the public library service in England”.

Johan Tilstra  @JohanTilstra
Utrecht University Library
A library without a catalogue

  • University libraries don’t have to provide local search functionality. Don’t need to spend resource on this as you can discover books anywhere as catalogues are available via the cloud, then delivery follows.
  • Users don’t want local search. Students start their search on search engines, then Wikipedia.
  • Only 10 people run Google Scholar. What if Google turn it off?  Users wouldn’t resort to their library.
  • By using other search like OCLC via your library’s subscription the library moves up your browser.
  • Leadership for libraries task force. Reinvorating public libraries in England.

Kathy Settle  @Kathy_Settle
Department for Culture, Media & Sport
Leadership for Libraries Taskforce

  • Libraries are civic spaces to serve their communities. Going beyond books to find more info. I.e. putting people in touch with groups or carers about dementia.  Teaching literacy. Code clubs. Business hubs. Performance and exhibition space. Co-locating with other council services.
  • 20% UK population not online. Public libraries can support them. For example, providing assistive technology and helping older people to access the Internet.
  • Libraries task force to help deliver on the Independent Library Report for England, December 2014.
  • People who are deciding on future of libraries are those who use them least.
  • Need to improve digital services and access.

Digitised collections – open and creative
The annual Off the Map competition challenges students to create videogames inspired by the British Library’s digital collections. For 2015 the “Alice’s Adventures Off the Map” competition, accompanies the Library’s forthcoming exhibition,  which celebrates Alice in Wonderland’s 150th birthday. The Memory Field project  – elements of which can be seen in the X Track – investigates how a DJ interacts with visual and audio collections and allows library users to mix and annotate links between digital collections.

Stella Wisdom  @miss_wisdom
The British Library
The British Library ventures off the map

  • Off the map.  Explores how BL digital collections can be used in new ways.
  • Alice’s adventures off the map and The Wondering Lands of Alice uses digitised images from BL collections.

Dan Norton and Fernando Vilarino
Computer Vision Centre
Memory Fields

  • The annual Off the Map competition challenges students to create videogames inspired by the British Library’s digital collections. For 2015 the “Alice’s Adventures Off the Map” competition, accompanies the Library’s forthcoming exhibition,  which celebrates Alice in Wonderland’s 150th birthday. The Memory Field project investigates how a DJ interacts with visual and audio collections and allows library users to mix and annotate links between digital collections.

Transforming strategic engagement
How are librarians working in new ways with professional service colleagues who are responsible for strategic engagement? In what new ways has strategic engagement become a function in libraries, distinct from the traditional subject liaison role? Why are some academic subject areas retaining traditional librarian roles?

Katie Fraser and Neil Smyth  @katie_fraser
University of Nottingham Library
Transforming strategic engagement

  • Relationship management. Librarian’s jobs have changed to align with relationships they have with others in the university – faculty and students.  Hard to stop doing some things in order to focus on new tasks such as focusing on making relationships.  This is harder as its not tangible like managing books.
  • Strategic engagement cycle. Building bridges as above. Partnering with others and seeing how all needs are met.
  • This means knocking at faculty and schools doors to try to engage, and was difficult. One reason being lots of staff changes.
  • Strategic information gathering. Mostly about conversations, meeting others and asking big strategic questions.
  • Joint diagnosis of needs. How to bring library and faculty needs together? Still working on that.  Everyone needs to be on the same page before action planning.
  • Be proactive in identifying risk before implementation.  Evaluation and review are also important.
  • Librarians found they had to take a leap of faith into new role and needed support from colleagues in the workplace and the profession.

Wonderful library websites
Great library websites help raise the profile of libraries, engage audiences, promote library services, provide seamless user experiences, improve discovery and open up collections. In Norway a large open source website project means that even the smallest library can have a great website.  In the UK, Digital Bodleian is a new single discovery interface for the libraries’ digitised special collections.  Developed using open standards, there were technical challenges – and innovative solutions.

Petter von Krogh  @pvkrogh
Buskerud Fylkesbibliotek
Webloft project – gives public libraries new websites.

  • 97% Norwegians have Internet access.  88% visit the Internet so public libraries need to be logged on.  ‘Society is where the library is’.
  • Open source and open licensing will be big growth areas. Libraries need to provide access so anyone can use open data and build upon it.
  • Petter’s project is webloft. Uses WordPress just like 24% of websites do as it’s easy, versatile and has a large community.  Plugins added to provide extra functionality.
  • Webloft library channel – upload content to YouTube, Vimeo or SoundCloud.
  • So webloft is not just a website, it’s infrastructure.

Matthew McGrettan
Bodleian Library, University of Oxford
Digital Bodleian

  • The Bodleian Library had separate collections, each with different user interfaces and no cross-collection search. Poor user experience.
  • Solution: single search, metadata scheme, better user interface, search index – Digital Bodleian.  Includes books, images, manuscripts.  Uses IIIF to bring together images held in other libraries.

Jon Bentley  @bent0s
Barriers to a seamless user experience

  • When surveyed about requirement for access management system seamless user experience came top.
  • Users expect consistent wifi. Design of pages must work well on mobile devices.
  • Training imperative on how to use these platforms on different devices.
  • Speed of access limited by how quick publisher’s sites are to respond.
  • Better procedures to inform libraries when resource urls are changed.
  • Next steps: Improve connection with publisher data.

Using technology to develop digital literacies
Using gaming and game design, problem solving, creativity, storytelling, maker culture and experimentation, libraries are bringing new ideas to ICT training and are helping to bridge the digital divide.

Nick Tanzi
Mastics Moriches Shirley Community Library
Video gaming as digital literacy

  • Digital literacy – ‘the ability to use information and communication technology to find, evaluate, create and communicate information’.
  • Video game design workshop.  Uses Kodu Game Lab.  Teaching kids to programme using a visual programming language.

Bridging the digital divide
Jeroen de Boer  @jtdeboer
Bibliotheekservice Fryslân FabLab Benelux Foundation

  • Nancy Kroess – ex EU Commissioner – ‘if you’re unable to code you’re missing a lot of advantages’.

Ake Nygren  @akenyg
The public library as a community hub for non-commercial learning.

  • Webmaker
  • Web literacy (exploring, building, learning).  Have made tools to help users remix the web – x-ray goggles, Thimble, Webmaker.
  • Mobile library FabLab – taking these tools to rural areas in the Netherlands – inc a 3D printer.
  • ‘Developing connections rather than collections’.
  • Learning by doing as a solution for the fact that teachers in secondary education are struggling to teach students how media is created.
  • Also delivering a modular package to help other libraries develop their on FabLab or Makerspace.
  • ‘Learning by making’ – Netherland Government approved budget so Maker education platform started.  It’s essential that libraries are involved to bring this to schools and public libraries.
Networking at ILI2015

Networking at ILI2015

Day 2

Keynote: Fighting to speak freely
Jodie Ginsberg. Index on censorship, UK  @jodieginsberg
EPIC is an independent non-profit research center in Washington, DC. EPIC works to protect privacy, freedom of expression, democratic values, and to promote the Public Voice in decisions concerning the future of the Internet.”

  • Free speech is in the “permanent interests of man as a progressive being”.
  • Mass surveillance already changing how we work. 1/3 writers in free world have avoided writing criticising government.
  • Surveillance uses security as a reason to invade privacy.
  • Index on Censorship opposes the right to be forgotten as it’s censorship and is too blunt a tool and too woolly.  Also suggest Google shouldn’t be the arbiter and there is no right to appeal, and it’s unworkable and only applies to servers in the EU.
  • CIPA implementation went beyond the requirements of the law. Overzealous firewalls, for example.
  • Students are being denied free speech as controversial speakers are increasingly not invited to universities.  Extremist speakers banned in some universities.  They want to shut down controversy to keep them safe.  Some have trigger warnings for students.
  • Free speech encourages the clash of ideas and not the closure of minds.
  • It was suggested that volunteers may censor how public libraries offer Internet to users.  Making decisions on providing access to information based on their own prejudices, rather than following the professional values paid staff would.
  • Protecting children. The best thing is to educate them and signpost risks. Otherwise you have to deny Internet access completely.
  • The Communications Data Bill (“Snooper’s Charter”) likely to be reintroduced along with other anti-terrorism legislation which will further curtail freedom of speech and terms are broad “undermine British values”.  A wide-ranging and vague statement – what are “British values”?
  • Update – On 4/11/15 the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill was introduced

The changing world of search
Phil Bradley  @Philbradley
Phil explores how Google search is changing, looks at why alternative search engines are so important and how social searching is changing search as we know it. Some recent news on search engines:

  • Google now forces you to go to your country version by default.
  • Ability to filter by pages visited gone.
  • Reading level discontinued – will Verbatim be next?
  • Dubious results. Google Martin Luther King Jr and this site is highly ranked –
  • Search engines are advertising resources – not there to give you the right answer.
  • Google tries to personalise your results based on your location, ads you’ve looked at and your search history.  It also promotes results with Google+ pages and reviews first.
  • In the US Google has dropped market share to Bing.
  • Right to be forgotten gives power to Google to remove search results.  In Russia you don’t need to prove it, you can just ask results to be removed.
  • 75% increase in Facebook video posts since 2014.
  • Individual publishing vs websites for news i.e., and Twitter and Facebook increasingly used as news sources.
  • The number of Internet searches on mobile devices exceeded those on desktops in 2014.
  • The future?  Wearables. Internet of Things.  Personal identification when shopping. Will shoppers be biased to shops that support that?

Demonstrating value
Evaluation and measurement are powerful weapons when it comes to securing support, funding and advocacy. In this session, librarians, a researcher and a publisher share ways to demonstrate impact and value to different audiences – from senior level decision makers to everyday users.

Christel Olsson and Tove Lekselius
University Library of Boras
Good customer relationships

  • What is the key value of the library?  Library as a space, face to face contact and doing what systems can’t.  Students often reluctant to ask questions.  Though library staff get lots of IT support questions.  These account for 28% of enquiries.
  • Face to face contact will be the most important thing in future. Introduced the “Meet and Greet Project” where library staff spoke to students at lectures and workshops.
  • Also introduced the “Quality Walk” where library staff look at the library from the user’s point of view and make a point of engaging with users – just by doing a simple “See, Nod and Greet”.
  • Library staff also asked to keep a diary. Note times when we said no to a customer and categorise enquiry by type of request – ILL, enquiries etc.
  • Also introduced the “Critical Friend” concept.  Staff pair up and shadow and review each other.  Initial reluctance at start and didn’t take off. So renamed it “Inspirational Friend” with certificate and staff adopted it.  It Includes documented evidence that all participating staff have the same knowledge base and have been putting customer at the centre.
  • Future developments:  Evaluation from participants.  Inspirational Friend certificate to include 2 stars and a wish (reward and a wish for improvement).
  • Librarian role is changing and you cannot end customer relationships.  Need to ensure users want the library and give them what they want. Library staff should ensure it’s always worth users visiting the library.

Leo Appleton  @leoappleton
Centre for Social Informatics, Edinburgh Napier University and University of the Arts, London
Knowledge, access and inclusion. The power of the public library

  • Research study into users experience of using public libraries. Focusing on citizenship.
  • There was a bias though as he surveyed library users rather than non users.
  • Libraries need to focus on digital by default inc digital skills. But not at the expense of print.

Seth Cayley  @sethcayley
Gale Cengage Learning
Researching the digital humanities

  • Extinction chart predicts libraries will be extinct by 2020. Unlikely, but shows profession needs to change and data mining is key to enable libraries are the link between the customer and research.
  • Netflix used data mining, for example, to commission house of cards.
  • 90 9 1 rule for community engagement also applies to data mining. Only 1% doing most of it.
  • 90% of users don’t know how to research.

Measuring to drive decisions
How are libraries measuring their activities and usage in order to drive effective decision making? UiT The Arctic University conducted a deep log analysis of its information literacy MOOC. This user feedback has enabled the library to refine its understanding of how students approach information literacy, and adapt future course offerings. Can altmetrics be used to help a governmental agency evaluate the social impact of government agencies – and can they help change the way management reaches decisions?

Lars Fingenschou and Mariann Lokse  @LarsFigenschou
Arctic University of Norway
Learning opportunities and barriers: making the most of MOOC usage data

  • Join the information literacy MOOC anytime
  • Evaluation from running the MOOC:  Less than half took the exam as it’s not compulsory and give no course credits.  96% passed the final exam. Was it too easy?  Found that less than 22% passed on first attempt. Some students took 20-30 attempts.
  • Course intended to improve students learning. The data showed parts of course students had most problems with. Were those questions too hard?
  • Allowing unlimited attempts seems to discourage learning.

Peter Nieuwenhuizen  @PNieuwenhuizen
Rijkswaterstaat (Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment)
Altmetrics: a social revolution in library impact measurement or just hype

  • – alternative bibliometrics.
  • Department publishes using various publication formats including online and social media.
  • Do non scholarly pubs also have an impact?
  • It’s a way to validate social impact.
  • Tested it on 33 articles published this year on Lidar Uncertainty Measurement Experiment (LUMEX).
  • Results: Government publications are mentioned in social media.
  • Conclusion: Altmetrics provide fast results, but are not suitable for all government publications.

Customer engagement
In Australia, a mobile makerspace that was set up to inspire and engage young people has extended to an adult audience too. In the Netherlands, a partnership of graphic designers and information managers set up a resource hub for social innovation.
Donna Kellion  @MakerSpacesMack
McKay Regional Council, Queensland, Australia
Social engagement and skills sharing

  • Makerspaces MacKay – kids making stuff with power tools etc.
  • How to take the time to pass knowledge to others. Young people learn social skills by sharing knowledge with elders.
  • Also benefits mental health in older life.  The project encourages them to make stuff and share knowledge with others.  Proven to have long-term benefits.  However, more mentors are needed.
  • Libraries no longer knowledge access – now knowledge sharing.

Nigel Browne  @ihsrotterdam
Information Manager at Dutch Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS).  Part of Erasmus University, Rotterdam
Engaging with partners for social innovation

  • TRANSIT project. Transformative social innovation theory.
  • Website includes a resource hub – a content management system.
  • Not just for academics. But for practitioners too.
  • Limited budget so needed to make compromises.
  • Use Google Goggles in Google Analytics to get more precise analytics such as user flow and page views.

Paul Gray
November 17, 2015