CILIPS Autumn Gathering 2012

Carnegie Conference Centre welcomed a record 135 delegates to the #CILIPSAG12 event last week and still we had a waiting list to see and hear a varied programme of speakers!


The ‘literacies’ theme proved to be incredibly popular with our members as did each of the keynote presentations from Hannah Gore, Biddy Fisher and Dughall McCormick.


The parallel sessions were equally popular with Gordon Hunt crying out for more chairs to seat those who had turned up to hear Jennifer Jones discuss social media. The packed session meant that some of us (including me) had to be turned away.


During the course of the day delegates were encouraged to tweet their thoughts, impressions and photos and many did. Richard Hawkins of CILIP kindly created a twitter archive for us which you can view here. (just click ‘archive’ at the bottom to view. Thank you Richard!


Once again, our event was well supported by a range of exhibitors, for which we’re very grateful. There were prizes won too in an afternoon draw including champagne, chocolates and an e-reader.


CILIP CEO Annie Mauger hosted a #shoutabout table over lunch which gave school librarians an opportunity to discuss the sector landscape in Scotland in advance of the lobby taking place at the Scottish Parliament on 27th October.
Feedback is still to be analysed but it looks like most delegates enjoyed a useful and productive day where they were able to encounter and discuss new ideas, engage with suppliers and network with colleagues.

CILIP Big Day and AGM in Newcastle

Over 180 members were registered for this one day event in Newcastle and what a day it was! The event took place in the awesome surroundings of Newcastle Central Library which was abuzz all day with excited delegates enjoying a day of celebration and camaraderie. The atmosphere was described by Council Leader, John Dolan as “tremendously positive”.

I was heartened to identify so many member members who had made the journey down from Scotland to support the day and join in the celebration of achievements. It was good to hear Ann Rossiter of SCONUL speak warmly about SHEDL as an example for others to follow.

There was a controversial keynote from Ged Bell who spoke in support of volunteers and elicited a sharp intake of breath from the audience. But in a barnstorming address later the same day CILIP President spelt out exactly where the organisation stands on volunteers – no, no, no, no no! Lord John Shipley spoke passionately about the meaning and value of libraries.  Read more about the event in Isobel Hood’s blog post.

There was good news for all during the AGM when members voted to freeze subscription rates for 2012-13 before celebrating the achievements of all those who had attained MCLIP, ACLIP and Fellowship over the last year.

Why not get a flavour of the day by viewing the tweet archive?

Last week I went to Wales #CILIPW12

Recently I represented CILIP in Scotland at the CILIP CYMRU Library and Information Conference.  The event was held in Cardiff for the first time after many years of being held in Llandrindod Wells. The Radisson Blu hotel was a very central venue in a fabulous city centre location close to the new library, shopping areas and restaurant quarters.

The theme of the conference was ‘leadership’ and delegates were presented with a very balanced programme addressing national (UK) issues and themes and Wales specific initiatives. There was also a good balance of the ‘personal’ and ‘professional’ including practical sessions from CILIP President Phil Bradley on personal learning networks, and a fun session with a serious message featuring Phil and CILIP CEO Annie Mauger.

Conference opened with an impressive address from Huw Lewis, Minister for Housing, Regeneration and Heritage who voiced strong support for the continuance of statutory library services in Wales. A motivational presentation from Liz Jolly was extremely well received as were workshops from some of the newer members of the profession. Simon Edwards, CILIP Director of Professional Services attracted a lot of positive comment on Twitter for his presentation on the revised body of professional knowledge. I’m pleased to say that Simon will be repeating that presentation for our Scottish audience in a few weeks time at the CILIP in Scotland Conference in Dundee .

The event including the Tir na n-OG Awards with the Welsh Books Council at Cardiff Central Library which was photographed by Sarah Barker  who also did a grand job of photographing the Conference itself. The presentations from both days of the Conference are on line and well worth a look

Dave Pattern has created a wordle of the conference  and others such as CYMAL’s Alison Tyler and Sarah Barker have blogged about the event too.

Finally for a real flavour of the Conference why not view some of the 1200 tweets from the event?

Grampian Information Conference

I travelled to Aberdeen’s Hutton Institute recently to attend the Grampian Information Annual Conference: Information: skills for learning, work and life.
The event was well attended with around 50 delegates turning up for the afternoon event.
The Team had put together a superb programme looking at information literacy initiatives in schools, universities and the workplace. So much was packed into a few hours it was hard to believe this was only a half day event. It even included parallel tours in between the presentations and I was able to enjoy a visit to The Reading Bus where I learnt more about this important initiative and also picked up a copy of their ‘Recipes for Loons and Quines’ (carrot and lentil recipe tried and tested by me last weekend – scrumptious!)
Delegates learned a little bit about SLIC’s initiative to bring the Scottish Information Literacy Framework information into its website and how we are working with John Crawford and Christine Irving to get this up and running as soon as possible and to extend its function to a Scottish community of practice using the model developed by the Scottish Government.  Christine Irving has blogged a  more detailed account of the event
Well done to all the GI team!

Govcamp Scotland – securing the digital future

Following the recent publication of the Digital Strategy, a Govcamp Scotland event was held in Edinburgh as part of a global series of initiatives supported by Microsoft which bring Governments, businesses and academic institutions together to better understand how to respond to the digital age. The Digital Strategy aims to put Scotland at the forefront of the digital economy and seeks to increase digital participation – something which SLIC is closely involved in via our Public Library Quality Improvement Fund and partnership work with JISC, the BBC and others.
The purpose of last week’s event was to explore the vision of Scotland’s digital future and seek to maximise opportunities for collaboration in order to realise Scotland’s full potential in this area.
Around 300 delegates including representative from education, business, SLIC, SCURL, local authorities and others heard John Swinney discuss Scotland’s Digital Future and had an opportunity to participate in panel discussions and other sessions which looked at health, education, jobs and skills, the low carbon economy and public service delivery.

I attended the education session which was enriched by the views of a set of school pupils discussing their use of GLOW and other digital tools.  We heard too about Edinburgh Libraries project work with Microsoft.
The day ended with the signing of the Digital Participation Charter which MSP Fiona Hyslop introduced to delegates. The Charter commits signatories to share information and align resources and efforts to deliver shared digital participation outcomes over the lifetime of this Parliament. Founding signatories included Hewlett-Packard, J.P. Morgan, Storm ID, MJI Business Solutions, Mydex CIC, Liberata, Cisco, University of Edinburgh, Carnegie UK Trust, Scotland IS, Sopra Group and Swirrl IT Ltd.

In summary a day of good intentions and interesting debates with lots of opportunities for SLIC, CILIPS and the library community to get involved.

CILIPS Autumn Gathering a huge success for second year running

CILIPS returned to Dunfermline’s Carnegie Conference Centre for our second annual Autumn Gathering held there on October 12th.

We welcomed over 100 delegates from across Scotland (and beyond) who enjoyed a packed programme designed and delivered by CILIPS in partnership with our Branches, Groups and Regional Groups.

Delegates received presentations from Alex Linkston, Jean Inness, Beverley Casebow and Alice Heywood, Stuart Dempster, Charlie Fletcher, Pauline Randall,  Gavin Oattes and the Career Development Group Scotland.  All the presentations from the day are available here.  

We had great support from our exhibitors – 3M, 2CQR, Alexander Street Press, Bolinda Digital and Bright Books Gale, OCLC, Oxford University Press and PTFS Europe . Members of CILIPS Central Branch  provided assistance and support throughout the day.

Our prize draw of a Kindle e-book reader was won by Philip Wark from Midlothian Libraries. We also gave away two bottles of champagne and a copy of new Facet publication: Getting started with cloud computing.

Lots of photos were taken on the day and you can view these here.

Feedback from delegates was overwhelmingly positive and as ever, the Planning Team will use all comments and suggestions to inform next year’s event.  See you there!

European Congress on E-Inclusion

Entitled Transforming Access to Digital Europe in Public Libraries, this was the second of these congresses I’ve attended, the last one being in 2009. The congress was held over a day and a half at the European Parliament in Brussels and attracted around 150 participants. Chris Batt, formerly Chief Executive at MLA, chaired the event which was run by Civic Agenda and supported by a host of organisations including JISC TechDis, Bibnet, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Eblida, to name a few. You can visit the event website and see all the information and presentations from the speakers, www.ecei11.com and Maria Cotera is writing a piece for the CILIP journal Update so you can also learn more about her impressions.

The event opened with two presentations on how to advocate to the European Parliament. The institution does not fund statutory services, like public libraries, but it will fund community hubs and telecentres. Not for the first time, I wondered whether libraries are driven to develop along certain lines because they chase the funding or because there is customer-demand. This was followed by some really impressive examples of taking advocacy into tough political environments and winning, namely Digital Wales and the work of IFLA with WIPO. Linda McAvan MEP joined a panel discussion and took questions from the floor before hosting a reception, which two other MEPs came along to as well.

The second day was a feast of papers from around Europe showing how libraries are repositioning themselves in the digital landscape including working with learning disabled adults in Latvia, the unique selling proposition developed by Bibnet, the inspirational Urban Media Space in Aarhus and developments in Romania. The next session on best practice led into an afternoon panel and question and answer format, which was quite a refreshing change for the more traditional conference session. Discussion included developing digital skills, e-government, peer-to-peer support, use of structural funds, broadband connectivity, social inclusion, gaming, working with specific target groups and accessibility. The final presentation came from Helen Milner of the UK Online Centres who challenged the congress to imaging a world without libraries and to consider that any strategy which is based on buildings is doomed. This enabled the conference delegates, mainly librarians, to consider what they really sought to achieve – namely people who are fulfilled, nourished, knowledgeable and empowered – and whether they thought they would find them in the library.

Rhona Arthur, Assistant Director