On 8 November at a ceremony in London, Valerie Nurcombe received the Walford Award from CILIP’s Knowledge and Information Management Group (formerly ISG). The K&IM Walford Award is presented to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the information world. Former Chair of the Standing Committee on Official Publications (SCOOP) Alastair Allan writes:
Valerie was SCOOP Secretary (under the name of Valerie Bradfield) from its formation in 1971. In its early years Valerie took on both the roles of Treasurer and Secretary and stand-in Chair for Bridget Howard. When I took over as Chair she shed the job of Treasurer to the ISG. She continued as Secretary until the later 1990s. During that time she organised a series of mightily successful seminars. For one of them in Red Lion square we had over 300 attendees. For another three we had over 200. She also edited a series of books and conference papers derived from these seminars which were very well received, for example, ‘Whitehall and Westminster, proceedings of a one day seminar on British and European official publishing‘, 1988.
Valerie is an expert in the field of Official Publications and an experienced librarian who has significant talent and many of us do owe her a great deal.
Andrew Coburn (who succeeded Alastair as Chair) adds ‘Valerie was always willing to offer her assistance and advice even after she had stepped down from her formal positions on SCOOP. She was full of ideas and suggestions which enabled us to continue the Committee as an active player in the field.’
Once again, the House of Commons Library will be holding an open day to enable librarians and information officers to visit and hear about the professional service provided by the Library to MPs and their staff.
This full-day event on Tuesday 13 February 2018 includes talks and presentations by Library staff, a short tour of Parliament and a very rare opportunity to see the Members’ Library.
The cost of the open day will be £35 and will include refreshments and lunch.
To register interest, please complete the application form linked from the Parliament website, where more information can be found, and submit it by 17 November 2017.
The UCL Institute of Education is home to an extensive print collection of Official Publications, beginning with the origins of state education in the United Kingdom in the 19th century to the present day. The breadth of the collection brings together key legislation, reports produced by select committees and government departments, circulars and memoranda. It also includes documents published by quasi-governmental bodies such as Ofsted, the Schools Council and the Higher Education Funding Council for England, as well as local authorities, political parties and trade unions.
The Parliamentary Archives have launched this new site developed in conjunction with Mirror Web at http://webarchive.parliament.uk/ to provide access to historic information from the UK Parliament published on the web. It includes downloads of web sites and social media gathered from 2009 to the present. You can browse archived tweets from the accounts of Parliamentary bodies, watch YouTube videos released by Parliament, see a visual history on Flickr and look back through Instagram posts. In the Instagram archive you can meet Denison the Harris hawk, listen to a gay couple explaining the difference the Sexual Offences Act made to their lives, and find out how to order afternoon tea on the terrace.
The main collection of archived websites includes Lords and MPs’ biographies, deposited papers, research briefings, Early Day Motions, Bills before Parliament and much more. You can filter the list by department and there is a timeline for each site showing when it was archived.
The site comes with a keyword search capability and you can filter results by year and file type. A search on “football” returns 185,465 hits which can be reduced to 725 if you filter by file type pdf and year 2016.
The Parliamentary Archives are looking for user feedback and you will be invited to complete a simple two-question survey.
Jennie Grimshaw, Service and Content Lead for Government and Official Information, British Library
Here is your chance to give the UK Parliament feedback on a new search interface available on a beta test site. More information is available on the Parliamentary Digital Service Blog about the new developments. The beta version will run alongside the original search page for several months eventually replacing it.
At the time of writing this post a single search box is available to enter text. The search returns cannot be ordered in any way and you are not given any other options to filter the number of searches returned. The site will continue to make improvements over the next few months, I am sure the UK Parliament team would find feedback valuable.
Hannah Chandler, Bodleian Libraries
The Library, at Queen’s University Belfast, has been developing an online archive, known as the Northern Ireland Official Publications Archive (NIOPA).
We are delighted to inform you that archive is now freely available at the following address: http://niopa.qub.ac.uk/
NIOPA is fully searchable with browsing and full text functionality and, as a digital archive of Northern Ireland official publications, makes documents available to support the research community, government departments and the wider public.
We welcome your feedback and shall be grateful if you would circulate the web address to colleagues who may be interested. In addition if you have any enquiries please contact: email@example.com
Please let us know if you would like us to provide promotional material or feel it would be beneficial for us to have a presence at any events.
For your information, NIOPA records and documents are deposited with the British Library under the Legal Deposit Libraries (Non-Print Works) Regulations 2013.
A formal launch is planned for early 2018 and we will contact again closer to the date.
Northern Ireland Official Publications Team
Following the development of the OECD iLibrary the OECD have spent the past few years developing “iLibraries” for other international organisations, using the same platform that users are familiar with if they use the OECD iLibrary.
The following are now freely available to use, but you’ll need a subscription if you wish to download, save or copy any information – or if you want to take advantage of the time saving features.
Should you wish to subscribe contact details can be found here.
The Standing Committee On Official Publications (SCOOP) would like to hear your views on the Print Still Matters website. The site aimed to give an overview of the print Official Publications collections held in libraries in the UK.
The website however has not been updated since 2013. Keeping it maintained and updated is difficult and to do a full and proper revision will incur costs. We have devised a short survey (six questions) to try and find out how much it used and to help us make an informed decision as to whether and how to continue it.
The survey is available here.
We will be grateful if as many people as possible can complete it, ideally in the few weeks or so, in order that SCOOP can consider the results as soon as possible and decide what to do next.
Thanks in advance.
Secretary of SCOOP
I’m posting on the blog in order to say a rather belated hello, and to introduce myself as the new Chair of SCOOP.
First off, I would like to pay tribute to my predecessor, Andrew Coburn, for the excellent work he has put into helping develop the activities of SCOOP over the past few years. In reading Andrew’s “farewell” post last month I was struck by just how much SCOOP has achieved during his tenure. For my own part I have found the Print Still Matters website and the Relegation Guides to be very useful indeed.
A bit about myself. I work as Resources and Collections Librarian in the House of Lords Library. In essence my role is to lead the collection management and development of the Library’s information resources. As you would expect of a parliamentary library, official publications (and particularly parliamentary publications) in both print and online formats are central to our collection. Along with the Commons Library we are one of the few organisations that still hold a complete set of House of Lords Papers. We were recently involved in a project to digitize this material in partnership with the National Library of Scotland and ProQuest.
I have a strong interest in official publications. However, since becoming involved in SCOOP last year I’ve realised my knowledge pales in comparison to the expertise of SCOOP colleagues, and I’m looking forward to drawing on that wealth of knowledge in order to carry out the responsibilities of Chair to the best of my ability. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you want to discuss any issues related to official publications.
Andy Zellinger, Resources and Collections Librarian, House of Lord Library
A couple of interesting posts from the UK Web Archive blog of the work going on to make sure that content is captured for future generations and highlighting problems that are faced by curators.
What websites do we collect during UK general elections looks at the archiving of previous elections and highlights the fact that the 2017 General Election was called at short notice so curators have a much shorter time frame to capture content than in previous elections.
The challenges of web archiving social media, interesting to note that, ‘ no two platforms are the same and require a tailored approach to ensure a successful crawl’. Which when you consider how many social media platforms are out there shows how much work goes on behind the scenes to make sure any archival work is successful.
Hannah Chandler, Bodleian Libraries, Oxford