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“Despair and excitement” in Royal Society of Canada’s library and archives report

Model of the Halifax Central Library, opening Dec. 13

Architectural model of the Halifax Central Library, opening Dec. 13

Today, the Royal Society of Canada released its report on Canada’s “libraries, archives, and public memory.”

Prepared by a panel of 11 Canadian and international experts, the report collects online submissions and interviews from across the country, in hopes of better understanding how Canadians are currently being served by their libraries and archives, and the ongoing impact of digital technology on those services. In the report summary, the panel summed up stakeholders’ responses as being filled with both “despair and excitement.”

Beyond developing a extensive list of recommendations, the report also captures personal stories of people whose lives were changed by institutions, often thanks to a supportive librarian or helpful archivist. On the flip side, author Jane Urquhart shares the difficulties she’s had accessing her own donated archives in the National Library of Canada’s literary manuscripts department.

Read the full report here.