02 June 2015

LAC Town Hall Discussion

On Monday 1st June I participated in an evening Town Hall discussion at the Library and Archive Canada's building, 395 Wellington Street in Ottawa. The session was a consultation with the specialist community toward developing a new three-year plan to orient LAC's priorities and activities between 2016 and 2019.  About 20 people plus LAC facilitators participated divided into four groups. There were five topics for discussion in 20 minute sessions.

1. LAC Reference Services
2. Prioritizing Preservation vs Access vs Acquisition
3. Digitization Priorities
4. Acquisition Priorities
5. Public Programming.

There was no feedback of the group discussions to the meeting so I only have a sense of the discussion in the group of which I was part. There will be a summary to participants in due course.

There were challenging choices presented, ones which LAC faces every day. Most of us expect LAC to strike a balance when forced to operate within a fixed resource allocation and recognizing the need to address multiple mandates. As genealogists we look to LAC not only as a source of information but also as a resource for those conducting research on diverse topics that will lead to digested information in the form of books and TV programs produced by others that we can use as reference in contextualizing our family history.

Further input from specialist focus groups are planned, likely including one for genealogy, as well as an online survey designed for a more general audience.

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