I’m part of the Liaison and Service Delivery teams in the Library and Learning Centre at the University of Dundee. I have been part of the Scottish Working Forum on Official Publications since 2014. Initially I was tasked with updating the OP directory entry for Dundee. Doing this it became apparent that there was a significant gap in our OP knowledge within the Library. The last member of staff who dealt with our OPs had retired several years earlier. Roles had changed and as in every library people were having to take on multiple duties.
Being part of the group has been a fantastic chance to network and share knowledge. Ideally I would like to see all the Scottish academic libraries represented on SWOP. I’ve benefited from the support and knowledge provided by SWOP. Fiona Laing (National Library of Scotland) provided support when we were developing our Library guides for staff and students, spotting out of date links and highlighting new resources. Sharron Wilson (Advocates Library) recently provided me with a tour and overview of her work, which was very interesting. Wendy Kenyon (SPICe) helped when we recently developed a training & development session for library staff. Meeting Kirsteen Valenti and Sonny Maley (University of Glasgow) has highlighted that we have a lot of library issues in common. Sonny’s posts at University of Glasgow Library are always interesting and entertaining. Everyone in the group is helpful and friendly.
I’m a fairly new member on the Business Committee, but I can definitely sense an energy to push on with new ideas, and increase membership within the group. The growth of official online information brings challenges as well as opportunities for wider access, and SWOP is at the forefront of this in Scotland. As mentioned above I would love to see more academic libraries join SWOP. To this end we are developing a community of interest for academic libraries within SWOP. In my role at Dundee official publications have an important place on reading lists, the curriculum, and learning and teaching across all subjects taught at the University (for example, Nursing, Education and Town Planning). The popular courses provided by the Centre for Archive and Information Studies bring regular OP enquiries from students, many from distance learners.
Being part of SWOP means you always have someone to call on.