SCELC eResource Hackfest

Justine Withers, Electronic and Continuing Resources Catalog Librarian, attended the SCELC (Statewide California Electronic Library Consortium) Hackfest 2018. USF, as a member of SCELC, is able to receive a lower negotiated rate on purchases and subscriptions of electronic resources.

As reported by Justine, “The Hackfest brings electronic resources and systems librarians together for three days of brainstorming and tinkering to solve or improve common tasks. They use the word ‘hackfest’ with hesitation and work hard to encourage anyone who works with electronic resources to come, whatever their level of ‘hacker, programmer, techie’ skills. The benefits were obvious this year. Different skills and experiences uncovered questions that might have gone otherwise unanswered, hidden under assumptions and limited perspectives.”

“This year, the teams coalesced around the desire to follow through on all the ideas that come up at these events. One team designed an online repository that all consortium members can contribute to. The other teams drafted guides and tutorials with wide appeal (we hope!). After three years of great projects, we will finally have a central place to share them and enable more collaboration throughout the year.”

If you would like more general information about SCELC’s eResource Hackfest, check out the link here.

For anyone interested in planning a future Hackfest, SCELC provides a very detailed guide here , based on previous years’ experience.

Technology, African Libraries and Meeting the Development Agenda

Justine Withers, Gleeson Library Electronic and Continuing Resources Catalog Librarian, attended the 4th African Library Summit and 2nd AfLIA Conference. It was held in Yaounde, Cameroon, May 16th-19th, 2017.

AfLIA stands for African Library and Information Associations and Institutions. From the website: AfLIA is an independent international not-for-profit organization which pursues the interests of library and information associations, library and information services, librarians and information workers and the communities they serve in Africa. More details here.

The theme of this year’s conference was, “Libraries in the Development Agenda: Repositioning African Libraries to deliver on the Future We Want.”

According to Justine, “Much of the discussion revolved around the inseparable relationship between access to information and meeting the goals set forth in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. I attended the conference in order to learn how I could assist some local libraries in Cameroon and how they handle the technical challenges of electronic resources. I learned the importance of meeting users where they are — including the technology they have access to and actual geographic location — and supporting local resources as much as possible. I will be thinking about how our own researchers access the library catalog as I make our resources visible.”

If you’d like more information about the conference, the program is downloadable in .pdf format here.

Yaounde restaurant