Tami Oliphant, a professor in the University of Alberta’s School of Library and Information Studies, is finding her research interests are not only timely, but as topical as the day’s headlines.
Stories have been part of human culture since humans were, well, human. It goes back as far as cave people scratching images of their lives onto stone, probably further. With storytelling, we recall the past and anticipate the future by weaving events into juicy narratives.
Traditionally, storytelling was a spoken-word or written affair. But with access to computers new ways of sharing stories have emerged — from podcasts and online learning to digital storytelling.
Once thought of as a niche medium appreciated mostly by stereotypical middle-aged comic book collectors like Comic Book Guy on The Simpsons, the graphic novel has been steadily moving from the fringes to the mainstream since the late 1980s.
When Linda Cook (‘74 BA, ‘75 BLS, ‘87 MLS) started as the Edmonton Public Library’s CEO in 1997, no new libraries had been built in 14 years. Libraries were considered old and tired—full of outdated, dusty books that were quickly being replaced by digital technology.
But Cook saw an opportunity. She saw EPL’s branches as community meeting places that could benefit from new technology rather than be threatened by it. That vision led to five new libraries, three rebuilt branches, countless new programs, and a complete overhaul of the EPL brand.
When you live 400 km from the nearest library, getting information can be a real challenge. Faculty of Education professor Ali Shiri of the School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS) is leading a project to address this issue. Together with co-investigator Dinesh Rathi, also of SLIS, Shiri and a team of collaborators have begun to bridge the information gap for some of Canada’s most isolated people with a project called Digital Library North.
MLIS degree candidate Karen Doerksen has a lot to celebrate these days.