Rights and Responsibilities
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Minutes of the Rights and Responsibilities Committee

October 3, 2003

Present: Kazuko Sakaguchi, Frances O’Donnell, Elizabeth McKeigue, Patricia Hatch, Renata Kalnins, Pat Tully.

The Librarians’ Assembly fall program will take place in early to mid-December. The topic will be the role of librarians in research at Harvard.

Possible activity: Development of library-to-library delivery of materials. Fran O’Donnell suggested this as a possible project for the committee, noting that this would be very useful and convenient for patrons. Elizabeth McKeigue noted that this is a service that has been much discussed and studied in HCL, and for the time being they determined that the service would be too expensive and staff-intensive to be feasible.

Possible activity: Campus-wide user survey. Kazuko Sakaguchi suggested a campus-wide library user survey to determine which services are most needed by or popular with the Harvard community. It was noted by several that individual units have done their own user surveys, but a campus-wide survey might be useful. Renata Kalnins and Pat Tully will bring this up at the next LA Executive Committee, as something to be suggested to Barbara Graham.

The minutes of the last meeting were approved with minor revisions. Renata will have these posted on the R&R website.

R&R activities for 2003-04: At our last meeting we identified four possible activities for the committee this year. At this meeting we made subcommittee assignments and discussed the activities in a bit more detail.

  1. Program on ethics in librarianship: Elizabeth and Patty Hatch agreed to work on this. There was some discussion of the format of the program, and it was suggested that it consist of two brown-bag lunch sessions, one in the winter or early spring and one later in the year. Suggested topics included effective training of library staff to protect patron confidentiality, and the steps that are being taken to protect patron information in Aleph and other library systems. Should the OGC be involved in these discussion? Patty and Elizabeth will get together to begin working out the details before the next meeting of the committee in late October.
  2. Updating of the Handbook for Librarians & Professional and Administrative Staff in the Harvard University Library: Fran and Renata agreed to work on this. Certain sections of the Handbook are outdated and a review is warranted. Suggestions for change would be brought to the LA Executive Committee to be passed on to HUL administration. This will be a year-long project.
  3. Development of the R&R website: Pat will work on this. Renata has compiled a useful list of sites that can be added to the site. Pat will come up with a draft of the revised site and bring it to an upcoming R&R meeting for discussion.
  4. Mentoring program: Fran, Kazuko and Pat will work on this, with representatives from the Professional Development and possibly the Communication and Orientation committees. Kazuko has experience with a formal system of mentoring at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, but thinks that perhaps a less formal system may be useful here. Renata and Pat are meeting later today with the co-chairs of the Professional Development committee to discuss the program in more detail; they will let the rest of the R&R committee know the results of the meeting. At the next LA Executive Committee meeting Renata and Pat will report on the projects and activities of the committee for this year and let the other members of R&R know of any questions or concerns voiced at the meeting. As soon as the Executive Committee meeting is scheduled, Renata or Pat will let the rest of the committee know when it is.

    At the next R&R meeting we will report on the progress of each activity.

    Future meetings: Renata will schedule the next meeting for the week of October 27th; each member will send the rest of the committee the times they are free that week. The meeting will take place at the Div School Library. In the future, we will attempt to set a regular time each month for our meetings.