Identify ways in which information professionals can contribute to the cultural, economic, educational, and social well-being of our global communities.
Now more than ever before, information management is a global endeavor. Information sources aren’t limited to the paper pages contained within their brick and mortar buildings, but rather can be digitized and delivered to any information seeker around the globe who is equipped with the technology to find and receive that information. With access to the internet growing daily, it is paramount that information professionals be mindful of these global communities, and the economic, educational, and social well-being of those communities, as well as the language and cultural differences that impact their access to information. Beyond the implications related to access to information, information professionals must also focus on the value that these diverse voices bring to the worldwide community, and the inspiration and value those voices provide.
Connectedness is a term that speaks to global collaborations, and it not only impacts learning but also the people responsible for managing, organizing, and disseminating resources (Holmquist, 2015). Information professionals, whether led by the official initiatives of their professional organizations or developed with colleagues, have launched numerous initiatives to foster global collaborations. The main quality the information professional must hold to engage in these large initiatives is simply to consider the global scale of the information field, and the opportunities to share and learn, gain inspiration, and generate new ideas (Holmquist, 2015).
Also, with global access to information now easily performed, and more cultural resources getting digitized and delivered in online environments, global copyright literacy is an important concern. The laws of different countries can impact an item’s reusability, but there are also cultural implications of an items’ reuse. For instance, the museum in Auckland, New Zealand has digitized a large number of cultural artefacts that they display in their online presence, but reuse of those items is limited based on the nature of reuse. The Maori people are passionate about protecting their heritage and their culture, and these concerns can be at odds with their desire to expose their rich cultural heritage to a global audience. An information professional needs to both champion the sharing of information, resources, and collaboration events, but they also need to heed to concerns of global communities in the protection of their cultural and social wellbeing.
In my position as Digital Asset Manager, I had the opportunity to work with global institutions to gather visual resources for educational content creation. Not only was I hyper aware of copyright considerations from around the globe and my role in enforcing responsible re-use of those assets, I felt a great responsibility in making sure that our reuse was not at odds with the cultural mores of the community it came from. As an officer of the ASIS&T Student Chapter, I feel lucky to be connected to a global community of information professionals who can provide guidance and opportunities to connect on global concerns and foster global perspectives.
I selected this group project in support of this competency because it demonstrates the desire to build a collection of global information in a similar domain. In this assignment, we determined that creating an archive collection of the websites of International Space Agencies with Billion+ Dollar Budgets would provide value to a global audience through discerning both their similarities and their differences. I and one other teammate reached out to the governing entities of each of the agencies represented for permission to archive, and also looked at the copyright laws of each of the governments to see if there were issues with archiving if they did not respond to our request.
I am submitting this discussion post in support of this competency because it demonstrates my understanding of global concerns in information dissemination. In particular, in this post, I examine the language localization concerns and how those localization efforts can be impacted by limitations in technology.
As an information professional, I consider it my responsibility to always consider the information community I serve, but also the global community of information seekers because most often, the two are connected. Information and insights from global communities provide value through the diverse perspectives they bring, enriching and expanding the conversation. I will continue to seek out opportunities to engage in these global initiatives and whenever available will seek out guidance from my relevant professional associations on international standards and practices.
Holmquist, J. (2015). Global Learning Networks. In S. Hirsh (Ed.), Information Services today: An introduction (pp. 374–380). Rowman & Littlefield.