Archive for the ‘cataloguing’ Category


New Book: Cataloguing and Decision-Making in a Hybrid Environment

January 17, 2013

So, you know that I and others in the cataloguing community are talking a lot about the hybrid environment? Well, I’m pleased to be able to announce the new book I’m writing for Facet, due for submission in August and available from December 2013:

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Image: Facet Publishing. New Titles and Key Backlist 2013. (*Lots* of other cataloguing and library goodness in there).


Future Skills and Future Roles

January 14, 2013

Umbrella2013 logo cropped AAs a professional discipline, it’s vital that Information Studies syllabi are in touch with practice. I’m really thrilled, therefore, to be attending my first ever Umbrella conference, and delivering a paper in its stream on “Future Skills and Future Roles.”

I’m looking forward to seeing the other papers that have been accepted in this stream (and, before then, to the uklibchat session at Library Camp London on ‘Design Your Own Library and Information Qualification‘). For now, here’s the abstract of my paper, which will be published in the proceedings (Facet, 2013):

Taking up the theme of ‘standards and qualifications that society can trust,’ this paper explores the role of practitioners in the education of the next generation of information professionals.

After a brief review of alternative models of praxis in LIS qualifications, including the old Library Association exams and the US model of library schools based alongside university libraries, the impact of communities of practice on career entrants is explored.  The extent to which information professionals are involved in the MA LIS is highlighted; the roles they play as guest lecturers, sessional lecturers and external examiners; and the influence they exert as employers of newly qualified librarians.

Finally, this paper argues that when we talk about ‘knowledge transfer’ and ‘links between research and practice,’ information should flow in both directions: from academe to practitioners and vice versa. It is asserted that the aim should be a virtuous circle of professional education that evolves to meet current and future information service needs. In this model, practitioners identify research issues; academics conduct research (ideally collaboratively with colleagues in practice); research-led teaching at Masters level encourages new professionals to focus on real-world issues in the application of their research skills; new professionals become research-engaged practitioners who identify research issues; and repeat ad infinitum.

With new international cataloguing code Resource Description and Acccess (RDA) being implemented, a brief case study from UK cataloguing is presented, and ways in which practitioners and academics are working together to create new knowledge are demonstrated.

At the conference itself, I’ll present a shorter version, highlighting how practitioners are and can be involved in the delivery and evolution of the MA LIS.


Cataloguing in the Hybrid Environment

December 19, 2012

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Term was upon me too quickly to find time to blog about the Cataloguing and Indexing Group Conference in Sheffield this year, so it’s good to be able to point you to the latest Catalogue & Index, which includes overviews of the event by Katie Flanagan and Steve Carlton, as well as versions of most of the papers.

With Kate Whaite, I spoke about some of the work I’ve been doing, reviewing publications about previous changes in cataloguing standards, and we presented some lessons that current day cataloguers can learn from the experiences of earlier changes. Kate also gave a short paper on her MA LIS and PhD research into cataloguing history. There were also great papers from, amongst others, Katrina Clifford, Helen Williams, Celine Carty, Stuart Hunt, Lucy Bell, Jennie-Claire Perry and the always inspiring Heather Jardine, a version of whose paper is also available on the City of London Bibliographic Services Section blog.

As we find ourselves moving forward into the 21st century hybrid cataloguing environment, it is worth remembering that Cutter himself was unfazed by the co-existence of records created under differing standards. All shall be well and all shall be well and all manner of things shall be well, etc.


Image: slide from Anne Welsh and Katharine Whaite. Our Hybrid History and its Action Points for Today. Cataloguing and Indexing Group Conference 2012 (ppt).


Seeing Through FRBR

December 18, 2012

sidebysideAs RDA implementation picks up speed, more and more library groups are getting to grips with FRBR. I was delighted to be asked to lead a workshop for ARLIS UK at University of East London Docklands campus.

I’ve uploaded my slides here, although, as usual, they are mostly pictures, so are really a reminder for any attendees.

Here are the references and links, which may be of use to folks who were unable to attend:

Read the rest of this entry ?


Practical Cataloguing (American Edition)

December 14, 2012


Sometimes people imagine that when someone writes a book they are given box-loads by their publisher and end up with an office looking like a remainder bookshop. Not so. The profit margin on any sort of book other than block-buster fiction is not great enough for publishers to give away their stock like that. So I’m extremely grateful to Facet for asking ALA Publishing to send me a copy of the American Edition of the book … as spotted by Celine Carty at the ALA conference earlier in the year. I asked Celine to pick me up a copy, but by the time she went back to the stand they had sold out. Which was good news, of course.

In any case, coming in after a day spent marking and moderating student assignments and finding the parcel from ALA was a wonderful extra Christmas present. I love my publishers!


Practical Cataloguing = Book of the Month

October 3, 2012


Many thanks to Katrina Clifford for forwarding her review of Practical Cataloguing which was published in Managing Information 19(5), 2012. She awarded it 5/5 and concluded

This comprehensive book will appeal to a wide variety of people, such as library school students, those needing a refresher of their cataloguing skills or even experienced cataloguers who feel they don’t know where to start with RDA and I can see it being used by more than one person in a large institution. Highly recommended.

She highlighted the examples and practice notes, saying

The chapter of examples of records with copies of the title/publication details is useful to keep bookmarked

as the examples are used at points in the text. A key feature of the book is the inclusion of ‘Practice notes’, which highlight where local practice may differ or offers advice relevant to the topic under discussion.

Managing Information picked out her sentence on the comparison of RDA and AACR2 in the examples, and placed it in large-print quotation marks:

Katrina works at Kingston and is one of the leading lights of the UK Cataloguing Community. As Honorary Secretary of the Cataloguing & Indexing Group, she was instrumental in the programming and organisation of the well-attended CIG Conference this year.

It’s really wonderful to be able to add her commendations to those of other well-respected reviewers, and, in the  middle of the first week of teaching, this news really brightened my day today. Thanks, Katrina. And thanks Managing Information for making Practical Cataloguing Book of the Month. #honoured


Katrina Clifford. ‘Book Review [of] Practical Cataloguing: AACR, RDA and MARC 21‘. Managing Information 19(5), 2012: 60.


City of London RDA Implementation

July 20, 2012

Really pleased to welcome one of the UK’s best public library Bibliographic Services to twitter – City of London, now @citybibs. Even more pleased that they are “Beginning to think seriously about RDA implementation” and very honoured that our book was mentioned in their first tweet:


I rarely take part in Twitter’s #FF (Follow Friday) – but this is definitely one twitterfeed I’ll be recommending to UK cataloguing in general, and to public library catalogu[e]rs outside the UK. @heather_jardine and her team are well worth the watching. If blogs are more your cup of tea than tweets, the citybibs’ blog, Work and Expression is also worth a regular read.


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