Currents No 4 Sep 2001
digest of cross sectoral information management events, issues and ideas in
organisations, libraries, archives and museums, with special emphasis on
arts and the humanities.
Australian Society of Association Executives held its New South Wales
Branch Conference in Sydney on 30 August 2001 under
the theme The Electronic Future: Associations Embracing Change.
Blewitt, CEO of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia (ICAA),
outlined how his organisation, with 35,000 members, has refocused its energies
on stronger customer service using technology.
mission statement - to be the organisation of first choice for leading
business, finance and knowledge professionals -
is an indication of the degree to which information technology is
producing a convergence of interests in the business world and an indication
of the spirit of optimism that pervades many associations wanting to cast
their net beyond their traditional membership territory.
has introduced limited committee terms, reduced the number of standing
committees, increased the use of task forces and adopted ‘an outside-in’
marketing approach, relying more heavily on market research and satisfaction
surveys. The technology suite includes an interactive website and portal,
several specialised e-newsletters, a customer relations management system and a
customer service call centre that aims to satisfy 80% of enquiries at the
first telephone extension.
Foster of Musketeer Management presented a case for association amalgamations
and alliances. Associations are too small if they don’t have the resources
to meet member needs and when they can’t afford the resources to achieve
their goals. The consequences of being too small include loss of members and
committee burn out from overload. Barriers to growth and expansion usually
include ego as well as financial and logistical considerations. The potential
benefits of amalgamation or other forms of collaboration include increased
membership, more effective use of limited resources and
unexpected synergies through shared experiences, events and activities.
Carnell presented a case study on how one small organisation (the ACT
Government) addressed the problems of a small population base, small revenue
base and uncompetitive economies of scale by emulating big business and the
larger states by targeting strengths and offering incentives.
presentations were given by Juliet Swain (on the benefits of direct marketing
over or as part of other types of marketing), Michelle Gilliver-Smith (on best
practice HR systems), Robert Thompson (on professional development and online
learning in associations), John Graves (on legal issues associated with email
and e-commerce) and Julian Ledger on how Youth Hostel Association NSW has
generated $3 million in Web sales through its award winning site during the
past year. .
particular interest to archives, libraries and museums was Peter Walsh’s
presentation on Standard’s Australia use of technology to change its
committee, production and distribution processes to generate standards and
earn income. This will
be the subject of a separate article to be published by the Wolanski
Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts (DCITA), on
behalf of Cultural Ministers Council, is undertaking a study of
the current and foreseeable needs of collecting institutions in
Australia. The review is
being conducted to allow informed decisions to be made about future support
mechanisms for the heritage sector, including collections held by museums, art
galleries, libraries, archives, specialist collections, regional and remote
collections, representing the Distributed National Collection. Critical issues
include collection management, the role of on-line resources,
audience access and engagement, major sectoral differences and requirements,
awareness and use of Heritage Collections Council,. government and collecting
institutions’ products and initiatives. DCITA is l also undertaking a
parallel mapping of support programs provided by the Commonwealth Government
and State and Territory Governments, large collecting institutions and sector
associations. The review is
expected to be completed by mid-November.
The Australian Library and
Information Association intends holding a national forum on cross sectoral
collaboration to identify key issues and joint actions to address them. The
viability of the forum will be investigated prior to ALIA’s 2001 National
Policy Congress in December 2001.
has also made a submission to the Department of Communications, Information
Technology and the Arts’ ICT Corporate Citizen Initiative, recommending that
the government establish a program or partnership arrangement to increase ICT
access, advance information literacy and break down the ‘digital divide”
through ICT company/library and information service links, training and
support. [Source: Incite Aug 2001]`
Lynch, Executive Director of the Coalition of Networked Information,
recently called for colleges and universities to examine the critical challenges
of managing their data.
relatively static boundaries that we’ve understood between scholarly
publication, academic records and what happens in the classroom are all
getting blown out the window. We have to fundamentally rethink what we’re
doing about records.
discussion about management, archiving and access to records is going to
become a very rich and complicated conversation which is going to engage
everyone from archivists to librarians to faculty to publishers to systems
builders to legal counsel to registrars."
the design of an adequate digital signature infrastructure is critical
for e-learning, Lynch emphasised that when thinking through the interplay of
such evolving infrastructure with records management policies and approaches,
universities "also have to hedge bets a little bit, and recognise
that twenty years or so downstream this infrastructure itself might change in
full speech: http://www.asu.edu/it/events/ecure.
European Commission has initiated DigiCULT, a 12-month study to identify
challenges and opportunities for archives, libraries and museums (the
so-called ALM sector) in the digital cultural economy.
consortium overseeing the project consists of prime partners - Salzburg Research Forschungsgesellschaft and Consorzio Civita, (Rome) -
core expert partners - Austrian
National Library (Vienna), Filmmuseum
of the Netherlands (Amsterdam), Haus
der Kulturen der Welt, (Berlin), Royal
Library and National Library of Sweden (Stockholm).Scottish Cultural Resources Access
Network (Edinburgh) - and network partners - The Digital Guild (London),
International Music Center
(Vienna) and The Pulman Consortium (Antwerp).
study focuses on five topic areas:
content digitisation, resources and use - highlighting how European
memory institutions use information technologies, specific technological
problems and challenges for extending digital services and applications,
and demands: national actions and policies - opening the information
resources of memory institutions to a broader audience through ICT.
and financial aspects - the technological development and the complex
requirements to guarantee convergent information delivery to the user,
drivers and constraints for co-operation. .
– looking at new partnerships with commercial firms, new business
models and business relations.
trends - developing scenarios for future trends focusing on the
long-term access of cultural resources, digital preservation of our
cultural memory, and new applications and services for ALM-institutions
and their users.
study is expected to be completed by December 2001. Website: http://www.salzburgresearch.at/fbi/digicult/.
Linking And Exploring Authority Files (LEAF) Consortium is undertaking an
analysis of authority files used by archives, libraries and museums. The LEAF
Consortium Project Co-ordinator is located at the Austrian National Library,
Vienna Website: http;//www.leaf-eu.org.
Online survey forms are available at http://www.crxnet.com/leaf/survey/english/page1.php
Online Computer Library
Center (OCLC) is developing a digital archive to track and preserve web-based
documents that exist solely in electronic format.
The goal of the Web Document Digital Archive project is to create a
sustainable service to provide long-term access to web documents.
pilot study will use and test the Open Archival Information System (OAIS)
model to develop a working digital archive.
Work on the project will be informed by the developments of the
Preservation Metadata working group convened by OCLC and RLG. The working group has published an initial white paper of
current best practices at http://www.oclc.org/digitalpreservation.
is seeking input on the project from a variety of institutions already focused
on the issue: the US Government Printing Office (GPO),
Connecticut State Library and Joint Electronic Records Repository
Initiative (JERRI), a partnership of the State Library of Ohio, the Ohio
Historical Society's State Archives, Ohio Supercomputer Center and Ohio
Department of Administrative Services.
Government Printing Office catalogues items distributed through the federal
depository program into WorldCat. GPO makes government publications in all
formats freely accessible to the public through more than 1,300 federal
depository libraries throughout the United States. Online and print
publications catalogued and disseminated by GPO provide information of current
and enduring interest on a broad assortment of topics, including congressional
documents, federal research, business, science, technology, statistical data,
law, medicine and federal regulations.
Joint Electronic Records Repository is a collaborative partnership of the
Technology Policy Group of the Ohio Supercomputer Center, Ohio Historical
Society's State Archives, State Library of Ohio and Ohio Department of
Administrative Services. Its
purpose is to find ways to appraise, preserve and provide access to Ohio's
electronic and e-commerce records of enduring historical value, and to
position Ohio as a leader in archiving electronic records and publications.
Currently, the group is in the planning stage of a pilot electronic records
long-term storage and retrieval program for state records.
website: http://www.oclc.org. Source: [Diglib Digest].
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issue of Cross Currents compiled by Paul Bentley
Wolanski Foundation would be grateful for feedback
on the scope, format and content of this bulletin..