Academic journal article Alexandria

Editorial

Academic journal article Alexandria

Editorial

Article excerpt

This special issue of Alexandria is the brainchild of Anne Welsh, the journal's Assistant Editor. During production, Anne became ill and was unable to continue work on it. Anne's condition has led her to resign from Alexandria. Despite her short period with the journal, Anne has contributed much to its development. We wish her well in the future.

Barbara Tillett sets the scene by discussing the international development of RDA (Resource Description and Access). She describes how this cataloguing standard arose following dissatisfaction with the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules. There was a call for a more international, principle-based content standard that takes the perspective of the conceptual models of Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records (FRBR) and Functional Requirements for Authority Data (FRAD). These models were developed by working groups of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA).

The next two papers consider RDA from the perspective of national libraries - in Switzerland and Scotland. Christian Aliverti and Alexandra Müller provide information about the situation of the Swiss National Library (NL) in terms of cataloguing, RDA and cooperation. They outline the NL's special situation in Switzerland, a country with four national and three official languages. In particular, they explain the legal directives the NL has to observe. They elaborate on the NL's activities in international committees, as well as on its undertakings at a national level. Furthermore, they highlight the challenges the national library of a multilingual country faces when adopting a new cataloguing code.

Neil Nicholson provides an insight into how the National Library of Scotland (NLS) has adopted RDA for authority control work, in particular looking at training and the review process. In addition to giving an overview of cataloguing operations at NLS, he notes how restructuring has delayed implementation of RDA. He describes what has been achieved so far and how RDA training is going to proceed, with reference to the range of training resources to be used.

Melanie Wacker and Myung-Ja Han compare RDA planning, implementation and use at two academic institutions: Columbia University Libraries and the University of Illinois Library. …

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