Due to the potential of a U.S. Government shutdown on Thursday, February 8, the Library of Congress (LC) limited the number of staff attending the 2018 ALA Midwinter Meeting. Consequently, the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) At Large Meeting and Participants Meeting were combined into one 90-minute session that took place on Sunday, February 11. Topics for this combined meeting included general updates on the PCC directory and the Name Authority Cooperative Program (NACO), an overview of the new PCC Strategic Directions document, and a presentation on updates to Resource Description and Access (RDA) and the RDA Toolkit stemming from the RDA Restructure and Redesign (3R) Project.
Lori Robare, PCC chair, discussed the 2018–2021 PCC Strategic Directions and presented with others involved in writing the six strategic directions. Three of the directions are inward focused, and three look outward. Looking inward, the PCC is striving to broaden its scope and outreach by being more diverse, inclusive, and collaborative with metadata creators (SD1); it is planning to streamline its operational effectiveness (SD2) and is considering sustainability by exploring options to become a legal entity (SD6). Looking outward, the PCC plans to take what it learned in the 2015–2017 strategic document regarding principles and theories of linked data and shift to practical implementation through hands-on experimentation (SD3). It is looking at how to manage identifiers through various communities (SD4) and to augment practices with the use of linked data value vocabularies in PCC cataloging (SD5).
Kathy Glennan, ALA representative to the North American RDA Committee (NARDAC) and chair-elect to the RDA Steering Committee (RSC), delivered a presentation titled “RDA, Linked Data, and the 3R Project.” The RDA Restructure and Redesign Project (3R) is a major undertaking by ALA Publishing and the RSC to enhance the RDA Toolkit (see the October 2016 “Kickoff Announcement” for more information). Kathy stressed that RDA is more than just cataloging rules and is transitioning to a data dictionary that can be used by different types of users, e.g., catalogers, developers, etc. With the launch of the RDA Registry in 2014, RDA can be implemented as linked data. The updated Toolkit and cataloging instructions, set to be released in June 2018, will be aligned with the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) Library Reference Model (LRM), an entity-relationship modelling framework. From an administrative perspective, the new Toolkit infrastructure will facilitate an automated update process to the instructions over the labor intensive manual editing in the current system.
Kathy also went over the new governance structure that will represent ALA at the RSC level. A few years ago, the RSC changed the RSC membership requirements to include representative membership from across the globe. Using pre-defined geographic areas, the U.S. and Canada now only have one representative, down from three, one each from ALA, LC, and the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing (CCC). To empower these communities to continue to contribute their expertise, the North American RDA Committee (NARDAC) was created. Instead of ALA, LC, and the CCC each having a direct representative to the RSC, each group will have up to two members in NARDAC to review proposals, and NARDAC will sent one representative to the RSC. The two ALA NARDAC members will participate in Committee on Cataloging: Description and Access (CC:DA) meetings to take ALA proposals forward.
See Kathy’s presentation for detailed information on RDA, the 3R Project roadmap, NARDAC, and outstanding issues being worked on by the RSC, e.g., reconceptualizing serials via LRM, aggregating works, redefining person.