Expert Panel Reports

The Status and Future of Canada's Libraries and Archives

Abstract: 

Since the 1950s debate has raged about the impact of new technologies on print culture in the broadest sense and on the publishing industry, libraries, and archives in particular. Succinctly put, “The Death of the Book” has been both proclaimed and denied. Meanwhile, notions of what constitutes a library or an archive have been challenged and transformed by new communications competencies and needs. In response to these realities, the Royal Society of Canada is establishing an Expert Panel on “The Status and Future of Canada’s Libraries and Archives”.

Mandate:

Libraries and archives throughout Canada have many overlapping obligations. They collect, preserve and disseminate knowledge, and provide access to information and intellectual resources for civic engagement. Libraries and archives are actively meeting the challenges of unfolding digital technologies, changing cultural practices, and society’s expectations. These are the founding principles of the Expert Panel of the Royal Society of Canada, which has as its mandate:

  1. To investigate what services Canadians, including Aboriginal Canadians and new Canadians, are currently receiving from libraries and archives.
  2. To explore what Canadian society expects of libraries and archives in the 21st century.
  3. To identify the necessary changes in resources, structures, and competencies to ensure libraries and archives serve the Canadian public good in the 21st century.
  4. To listen to and consult the multiple voices that contribute to community building and memory building.
  5. To demonstrate how deeply the knowledge universe has been and will continue to be revolutionized by digital technology.
  6. To conceptualize the integration of the physical and the digital in library and archive spaces.

Public consultations are being planned to take place in: Halifax, Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg, Calgary/Edmonton, Vancouver, and Yellowknife.

The Panel has written a letter of invitation to the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages. Read the letter here.

Panelists
Dr. Patricia Demers, FRSC, Chair - University of Alberta
Dr. Guylaine Beaudry - Concordia University
Pam Bjornson - National Research Council
Dr. Michael Carroll - American University Washington College of Law
Prof. Carol Couture - Université de Montréal
Charlotte Gray, FRSC - Carleton University
Judith Hare - Halifax Public Libraries
Ernie Ingles, FRSC - University of Alberta
Prof. Eric Ketelaar - University of Amsterdam
Gerald McMaster - Art Gallery of Ontario
Ken Roberts - Hamilton Public Library


Patricia DemersDr. Patricia Demers, FRSC, Chair (University of Alberta)
Dr. Patricia Demers, Distinguished University Professor in the Department of English and Film Studies and the Comparative Literature Program at the University of Alberta, is the author or editor of seventeen books and over fifty articles. She has received numerous awards for her research and teaching. Her critical studies of pre-modern women writers are models of balanced, investigative scholarship, and her critical editions of early works for children are landmarks in the serious study of formative literary works. Recently she has collaborated on an award-winning study, the translation and edition of a text in Cree Syllabics. She has performed major service to the humanities and national scholarship as Chair of her Department, Vice-President of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and the first woman President of the Royal Society of Canada.

 

Guylaine BeaudryDr. Guylaine Beaudry (Concordia University)
Guylaine Beaudry is Director, Webster Library at Concordia University. She was previously Director of the Digital Publishing Centre at Université de Montréal and Executive Director of Érudit (www.erudit.org), a publishing platform for humanities and social sciences scholarly books and journals. She wrote many publications on scholarly publishing, notably, the books La communication scientifique et le numérique, published by Hermès/Lavoisier (Paris) and that will be soon copublished in English by ISTE/Wiley & Sons, Le nouveau monde numérique et les revues scientifiques published by Les Presses de l’Université de Montréal and La Découverte (Paris, France), that was translated and published by University of Calgary Press (Scholarly Journals in the New Digital World). She is working on a book entitled Profession : bibliothécaire that will be published by Les Presses de l’Université de Montréal. She holds a doctorate in history of the book from École pratique des hautes études (Paris). Her thesis is entitled “Scholarly communications and the digital revolution: Analysis of a mutation period in a historical perspective”. Guylaine Beaudry was president of the Corporation of Professional Librarians of Québec from 2008 to 2010 as well as founder of the Conference of the Library and Information Community of Quebec, event that annually gather more than 1000 participants.

 

Pam BjornsonPam Bjornson (National Research Council)
Pam Bjornson is Director General of the National Research Council Knowledge Management group, which includes NRC Foresight and the Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information (NRC-CISTI). NRC-CISTI provides high value information and services in the areas of science, technology and health. Ms. Bjornson has a Master of Business Administration from the University of Ottawa.  She has over 25 years of management experience, including nine years as Executive Director of Canadiana.org, a not-for-profit organization established by the major Canadian university libraries and the National Library of Canada to preserve Canada's printed heritage and make the resulting collection accessible to research libraries in Canada and around the world.  

 

Michael CarrollDr. Michael Carroll (American University Washington College of Law)
Michael Carroll is a Professor of Law and Director of the Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property at American University Washington College of Law.  His research and teaching specialties are intellectual property law and cyberlaw, focusing on the search for balance over time in the face of challenges posed by new technologies. He is a founding member of Creative Commons, Inc. and a member of the Board of the Public Library of Science.

 

Carol CoutureProf. Carol Couture (Université de Montréal)
A graduate of Université Laval in 1970 and the Université de Haute Alsace in France (DESS in archival science) in 1995, he began his career working as an archivist at the National Archives of Canada from 1970 to 1972. He worked as Deputy Director of the Archive Department at Université de Montréal from 1972 to 1976 and became the Director of this department in 1976. He then joined Université de Montréal’s École de bibliothéconomie et des sciences de l’information (EBSI) in 1988 where he was a full professor until January 1, 2006. He also assumed management of the School from June 1, 2001, until May 31, 2005. He was conservateur et directeur général of the Archives à Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ) from January 31, 2006, until January 31, 2012. He has written several scientific articles and several texts on archiving, including Les fondements de la discipline archivistique (1994) and Les fonctions de l’archivistique contemporaine (1999), which were published by the Université du Québec press (PUQ). He is also the co-director of the collection gestion de l'information at PUQ. He chairs the Association des archivistes du Québec and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. The recipient of several awards and distinctions, he received the prestigious Prix Gérard-Morisset of the Prix du Québec, which was awarded to an archivist for the first time, in 2001.

 

Charlotte GrayCharlotte Gray, FRSC (Carleton University)
Charlotte Gray, B.A, Dip. Soc. Admin., is one of Canada’s best-known writers, and author of eight acclaimed books of literary non-fiction. Her most recent book is Gold Diggers, Striking It Rich in the Klondike, which is currently in production as a dramatic television miniseries, produced by Scott Free Television, for the Discovery Channel. Her previous seven books, which include Reluctant Genius: The Passionate Life and Inventive Mind of Alexander Graham Bell, were all award-winning bestsellers. In September 2013, The Massey Murder, will be co-published by Harper Collins Canada and The Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History.

Born in Sheffield, and educated at Oxford University and the London School of Economics, Charlotte came to Canada in 1979. She worked as a political commentator, book reviewer and magazine columnist before she turned to biography and popular history. A member of the Order of Canada and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Charlotte holds five honourary degrees and the Pierre Berton Medal for Popularizing Canadian History. She is a writing coach for the National Judicial Institute, a regular guest on television and radio programs, and has been on several book award juries, including the Giller Award for fiction, the Charles Taylor Prize for non-fiction, and the Shaunessy Cohen Award for political books. She is an Adjunct Research Professor in the Department of History at Carleton University.

 

Judith HareJudith Hare (Halifax Public Libraries)
Judith Hare is currently CEO of the Halifax Public Libraries, a position held since 1996.  She has spent her entire career, since receiving her B.A. (political science) in 1969 and M.L.S. from the University of Western Ontario in 1972, managing and leading public libraries in Ontario, British Columbia and Nova Scotia.  Hare is the recipient of the Ontario Library Association’s Angus Mowat Award for Library Innovation in 1993, a joint author of “One Place To Look”, the first strategic plan for Ontario’s Public Libraries, and participated in an Oxford Round Table to examine the American Patriot Act.  She is a frequent speaker at Library conferences including the Canadian Library Association, the Ontario Library Association, Metropolitan Libraries (a division of IFLA) and the International Federation of Library Associations on diverse subjects including public engagement, pod-camp and social media, community-led service development, design and construction of the Halifax Central Library and library leadership.  Hare is a member of both the Canadian and American Urban Libraries Councils.

 

Ernie InglesErnie Ingles, FRSC (University of Alberta)
Ernie Ingles is currently Vice-Provost at the University of Alberta. Within this context he has had responsibilities for the Library System, the Department of Museums and Collections, the Department of Archives and Records Management, the Bookstore, Printing and Duplicating Services, the University of Alberta Press, University Design Inc., Previously he also served as the University’s CIO.  He is responsible, also, for administering Copyright Compliance. In 2010 he was made Executive Professor, and Director, School of Library and Information Studies, and he has been an active player within library and information technology communities, having served over one hundred professional associations in senior executive capacities.  

He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Ruth Cameron Medal for Librarianship, the Marie Tremaine Medal for Bibliography, the Canadian Association of College and University Libraries Award for Outstanding Librarian, the Innovation Achievement Award from the Canadian Association of College and University Libraries, the Presidents Award for Outstanding Service from the Library Association of Alberta, and Outstanding Alumni award from the University of British Columbia, School of Library, Archival and Information Science and Outstanding Alumni (Honorary) of the University of Alberta, Innovator of the Year, and Hall of Fame Inductee award sponsored jointly by Canadian Business, the Royal Bank, the Canadian Information Processing Society and the Information Technology Association of Canada, and the Outstanding Service to Librarianship Award from the Canadian Library Association. He is also an Honorary Life Member of The Alberta Library.  In 2001 he was a specially elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, and in 2003 was awarded the Queen’s Jubilee Medal, and in 2012 the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.  In 2006 he was recognized with the CARL Award for Distinguished Service to Research Librarianship. In 2011 Red Crow College conferred upon him the title of “Kaaahssinnon” (‘Elder’) and the Honorary Degree of ‘Blackfoot Eminent Scholar Kainai Ph.D’

 

Eric KetelaarProf. Eric Ketelaar (University of Amsterdam)
Eric Ketelaar is Professor Emeritus at the University of Amsterdam, where from 1997 to 2009 he was Professor of Archivistics in the Department of Mediastudies. As an honorary fellow of his former department he continues his research which is concerned mainly with the social and cultural contexts of records creation and use. Educated as a lawyer and legal historian, he received his LLM and LLD (cum laude) degrees from Leiden University. He was Secretary of the Archives Council, Director of the Dutch State School of Archivists, Deputy General State Archivist and State Archivist in the province of Groningen. From 1989-1997 he was General State Archivist (National Archivist) of The Netherlands.

From 1992-2002 he held the chair of archivistics in the Department of History of the University of Leiden. Eric Ketelaar was visiting professor at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor), Gakushuin University (Tokyo), the University of Toronto and Monash University (Melbourne), where he continues to be involved as a Senior Research Fellow.

Eric served the International Council on Archives during twenty years in various positions, before being appointed Honorary President of ICA in 2000. He has served the Royal Society of Dutch Archivists as Vice President, and President. He has been a member of the European Commission on Preservation and Access, president of the Records Management Convention of The Netherlands, and chairman of the DLM Forum which promotes information governance in the public and private sector across Europe. He has been a founding editor of Archival Science

 

Gerald McMasterGerald McMaster (Art Gallery of Ontario)
Gerald McMaster, PhD, OC, is a writer, artist and curator. Attended the Institute of American Indian Art (New Mexico), Minneapolis College of Art and Design (Minnesota), Carleton University (Ottawa), University of Amsterdam (The Netherlands). For many years, he was curator at the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, and the Art Gallery of Ontario. In each of these institutions he was responsible for developing major reinstallation of exhibitions. He has curated some of the most important exhibitions of contemporary Indigenous art, such as “Indigena” (1992), “Plains Indian Drawings” (1996), “Reservation X” (1998), “First American Art” (2004), and “New Tribe/New York” (2005. More recently, he curated Inuit Modern: The Samuel and Esther Sarick Collection for the Art Gallery of Ontario (2011). In 2012 he was one of the Artistic Directors of the 18th Biennale of Sydney, Australia. Widely published, his awards and recognitions include the 2001 ICOM-Canada Prize for contributions to national and international museology; National Aboriginal Achievement Award; and he is an Officer of the Order of Canada. He currently lives in Philadelphia.

 

Ken RobertsKen Roberts (Hamilton Public Library)
Ken Roberts was Chief Librarian of the Hamilton Public Library from 1994 until his retirement in 2012.  He has received both the Canadian Library Association's Outstanding Service to Librarianship Award and the Ontario Public Library Association's Lifetime Achievement Award. Ken is a member of McMaster University's Alumnae Gallery.  In 2012 the Province of British Columbia commissioned Ken to write a paper on trends that affect the future of public libraries. A link to this paper can be found at kroberts.ca. Ken has recently assisted the Canadian Urban Libraries Council with their ebook task force and is proud to have been a leader-in-residence at the Edmonton Public Library.

Ken is a former Governor General's Award nominee for Children's Literature. His children's novels have received starred reviews in prestigious publications such as The Horn Book, Kirkus Reviews, and School Library Journal.

Panel Members: 
Dr. Patricia Demers
Mr. Ernie Ingles
Ms. Charlotte Gray