Information Day 2018: Are we ready? The role of the Library in the Research Space”

Information Day 2018 On 5 May 2018, the Library staff at Monash University Malaysia gathered for a day of discovery, exploration and fun on the occasion of its fourth Information Day 2018.  This annual event brings together library staff, library experts and educational practitioners to provide a professional forum that fosters exposure to new trends, nurtures collaboration between academic libraries and discusses challenges and opportunities associated with the changing roles of libraries.

The theme of the day, “Are we ready? The role of the Library in the Research Space” revolved around the impact of digital revolution on academic libraries and its implications on services, programs and staff capabilities to foster effective and purposeful engagement with the research community.

Following the opening remarks by LLC Director, Isabelle Eula, keynote speaker Clare Carlsson, Deputy University Librarian at Deakin University Melbourne drew on her experience in large research universities across Australia to share insights on the role of the Library in research and learning. In her presentation “A library with impact: making a difference by supporting world-class learning and research”, she addressed the potential for library partnerships and collaborations to become “front and center” in campus research office, research committees and other key research functions. In sharing successful exemplars of research data services provided by Deakin Library, she emphasized the sheer importance of a strategic relationships management underpinned by a long-term approach to staff upskilling and engaging confidently and purposefully with researchers.

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Sossamma George, Senior Research Data Manager at Monash Malaysia took a more subjective approach to the theme, sharing her journey from managing information resources to taking on a facilitation and consultation role that fosters best practices in research data management within and beyond the Library. George highlighted the key milestones of the Monash Malaysia Library’s plan echoing Carlsson’s views on the need to continuously build research capabilities of library staff.

Breaking pace from the morning’s lecture style session, the afternoon breakout sessions provided an opportunity for the Library staff to engage with the keynote speaker and LLC senior team and to delve further on the theme of the day. Adopting the world café forum model, staff worked in assigned groups and rotated through tables to address 8 research questions revolving around skills, programs, collaboration and outreach. While the discussions were focused and serious, the terrific spirit of camaraderie made the interactive activity more fun and enjoyable. The outcomes of the breakout sessions were reported by the facilitators after the afternoon tea break. They will be taken on board to revisit the Library’s current operational plan and inform future plans.

Information Day 2018 concluded with parting comments by LLC Director, acknowledgements and conveyance of thanks to the organising committee and exchange of gifts with Ms. Carlsson.

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