Official Publications Seminar (7 November 2012)
Posted by JackieHanes on 16 November, 2012
I attended an Official Publications seminar on Wednesday 7 November 2012. It was hosted by the British and Irish Association of Law Librarians (BIALL) and held at the National Archives in Kew. A fabulous building, if a little out-of-the-way for travel. Their cafe and restaurant is well worth a visit! Our four speakers were all from the National Archives, and spoke about their roles in legislation, parliamentary and government publications, and collections policy.
Carol Tullo (Director of Information Policy and Services)
Introduction to the seminar and role of the National Archives in official publications policy and standards. Discussed on the provenance, authority and legal status of official publications. Focused on the role of crown copyright, and the strive for open-access, reliable and re-usable information. New Gov.uk website replaces Direct.gov.uk, as single source of government information, with departmental websites closing in next few years.
John Sheridan (Head of Legislation)
Introduction to the Legislation.gov.uk website. Designed for public not legal users. Can search and access via Google. Links to most current version of legislation. Can print via PDF with crown branding. 4 user personas were developed during design process: legal expert, professional, citizen, and novice. Problem of keeping legislation up-to-date. Use collaborative model of expert participation (from legal publishers) to up-date legislation. Use of technology to help manage drafting and updating procedures, including commencement and extent. Expect to be up-to-date end 2013.
Helen Creeke (Official Publications Manager)
General introduction to parliamentary (bills, house and command papers) and departmental papers. Parliamentary papers available in PDF format via Official-Documents.gov.uk from may 2005 to date. Printed copies can are published via TSO. Publication of departmental papers not standardised. Move to online-only publication via departmental website. Perpetual access to online departmental papers not guaranteed – especially with move to close departmental websites. National Archives has managed the UK Government WebArchive since 2005. Periodic (quarterly) snapshot of selected government department websites and documents. Standing Committee on Official Publications (SCOOP) conducting a survey of printed official publications under banner ‘Print Still Matters’.
Julia Stocken (Head of Information Management and Practice)
Outline of National Archives collection and selection policy. Public Record Acts require preservation. Only 5% of public records selected for archive. Need to be of historical significance – much guidance! Previously transferred after 30 years, now moving to 20 years.
Handouts and full notes are available on request.