We envisioned this year’s July issue to be an inaugural attempt at creating a contributor-driven “unconference issue.” And while this month’s issue is a compact one, I think its contents speak to the spirit of an unconference—user-driven conversations and knowledge-sharing that span a wide range of topics, media and scope, engaged with at our own pace.
This issue continues the conversation we started in July about race. We also share two articles about innovative community-inspired programming as well as a new column that celebrates the work and experiences of colleagues across the province.
Here are the articles and commentaries in this issue, in the order that they appear:
- In July, Todd Kyle wrote his second column for Safe Spaces, a column that has engaged our readers and resulted in two letters to the editor, which we are publishing a column we call Hear to listen … Ici et tout ouïe. In From the editor, Transformative conversations reflects the Open Shelf editorial team’s thinking about this issue and how decision making can support what Philomena Essed has called the 5 Rs of racism.
- culture@work marks our new collaboration with the OLA Cultural Diversity and Inclusion Task Force. This first column features Mandissa Arlain, a library technician at Ryerson University Library and Archives.
- In his regular column, Open for all?, John Pateman also reflects upon the issue of race and its impact on libraries as accessible, respectful and inclusive spaces.
- Finally, our two feature articles highlight innovative community-responsive programming. In The Spark: Community-led initiatives at the Brockville Public Library, Brandy Smith shares three programs that were sparked by ideas from community members while Richard Anderson and Janice Chuang share their adventures with creating virtual reality programming in Sharks, dinosaurs, outer space and more.
As always, we hope you find Open Shelf interesting and engaging.