The EDGE Conference 2014
About the event[edit | edit source]
Organised by Edinburgh City Libraries, The Edge Conference brings together change managers, thought leaders, leaders in information services, shared services, engagement, and regeneration to share and develop best practice from around the world. Wikimedia UK was represented by Ally Crockford - see below.
Background[edit | edit source]
Government and councils are driving change to seek more efficient ways of delivering innovative, customer focused services, within a challenging financial context. At the heart of Edinburgh’s Library and Information Services are the people using our libraries. By shaping our service according to people’s needs, we are driving forward constant change, delivering dynamic, award winning services. It is taking us in a direction that was unimaginable even a few years ago. And we’re consulting with our customers to ensure their views are heard. Recently, over 10,000 people shared their views on the future of Edinburgh’s library service. Through innovation we continue to deliver excellent public, electronic, educational and cultural programmes, both in libraries and virtually. We are bucking the national trend by refurbishing and opening new libraries, increasing visitor numbers and innovating with our online services.
The annual conference was launched in 2010 after a series of innovative changes at the Edinburgh City Libraries sparked international interest. Successful conferences have been held each year since, bringing together leaders from across the information services sector.
The key aims of Edge 2014 are:
- To make businesses and services edgier, smarter, more creative and cost effective in a world that is being transformed by digital and social technologies;
- To learn how libraries and information are delivering regeneration, eGovernment, learning and digital inclusion;
- To hear the latest ideas, share success stories, hear best practices and meet colleagues from across the country and around the world;
- To open a platform for discussion on the future of service delivery in libraries and information;
- To offer a platform for new innovations and technologies.
Programme[edit | edit source]
DAY ONE[edit | edit source]
- The Physical – Investing in Infrastructure
Many authorities are now recognising how they can effectively push the boundaries of public service delivery, create more cost effective estates, build stronger communities and promote economic vitality through their libraries. Libraries are now defining a vision for themselves, as hybrid libraries, which are a combination of a conventional library and a new electronic network library. See just how many large cities are planning and building public libraries, which are critical to the city centres. Most often, library projects are associated with the regeneration of towns and city centres, or with converting an industrial area or harbour for cultural use. Planners are more and more seeing the value of enhancing commercial areas with public library and cultural buildings open to everyone.
- The Social – Better Together
How do we build community resilience? Resilience here is defined as ‘the ability to solve problems, act for the future and participate in decision making’. The world is at a critical point in history, facing a growing number of threats including environmental issues, economic recession and humanitarian disasters. Experience and research show that the quantity and quality of social capital within a community plays a crucial role in our resilience. Public services and in particular public libraries initiate and support activities that engage, involve and connect people; discover and make the most of people’s talents and potential; improve and create networks within and between communities; and nurture relationships of trust and partnership through working together.
DAY TWO[edit | edit source]
- The Digital – It’s time for the Future
Information and communications technology impacts on the communities in which we live and the way individuals, business, government and civil society interact and develop. Simultaneously, all sectors have shown increased interest in the concept of social capital and the role ICT can play in building stronger communities, increasing economic productivity and contributing to regeneration. As the use and impact of ICT increases and government agendas shift to a requirement on the individual to be ICT literate, the prospect that ICT can play a role in shaping the nature of community development and contributing to the building of social capital is even more important. ICT is changing the way that individuals within communities interact, expanding the concept of community to those groups that are not bounded by geography, i.e. so-called virtual communities.
How ready are you for the new world of communications and community? Is your community ready for the impact of Public Sector Welfare Reform? Are you socially networked? Virtually engaged? What’s new? Find out what you don’t know from leaders in this arena
Wikimedia at The EDGE[edit | edit source]
Ally Crockford, Wikimedian in Residence at the National Library of Scotland, will be discussing her work with the Library and presenting information about GLAM:Wiki collaborations and Wikimedia Loves Libraries more broadly, outlining the possibilities and some of the major benefits for both parties. There will also be some details of successful case studies to date, both those in Scotland and elsewhere in the UK, EU, and America, to demonstrate the impact of such a collaboration for organisations across the information services and the cultural heritage sectors. The aim is to present the GLAM:Wiki initiative as an innovative approach to open access knowledge and to the dissemination of knowledge itself, and to make contact with fellow delegates for prospective partnerships or collaborations.
Outcome[edit | edit source]
- A talk about the NLS WiR programme was delivered at the EDGE Conference 2014 in Edinburgh on 28 February; approximately 40 people were in attendance over two days and the response was extremely positive. Contacts within Edinburgh City Libraries were made.
- Further: Following a conversation with curators at Edinburgh City Libraries during the 2014 EDGE Conference, a second Wikimedia Takes Edinburgh photo expedition has been proposed for July 2014. The event would specifically be designed to correspond with the release of images from the NLS' and Edinburgh City Libraries' shared collection of 19th and early 20th century photographs of Edinburgh (prospect of a 'now and then'-type focus was raised). A meeting with the National Records of Scotland was arranged for 5 May but was postponed; the meeting aims to discuss their involvement in the use of this material in Wikipedia articles, potentially identifying a few key 'lost' landmarks in Edinburgh for which old and new photos of the location could be uploaded and information from the NRS and the NLS could be used to create or improve articles on an area, event, or landmark.
Further contact[edit | edit source]
For further information about the programme, please contact Gráinne Crawford at 0131 529 7791 and for further information about Wikimedia's presence at the event please contact Ally Crockford at a.crockford(at)nls.uk or by leaving a message on her talk page.