Specialized Resources for Parliamentary Libraries.

Author:Close, Heather
 
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Parliamentary libraries are specialized environments, requiring dedicated and unique resources to support their client-centered reference service. Staff add value to collections and information sources using their knowledge and understanding of the local parliamentary context. Examples provided from Alberta and Newfoundland and Labrador highlight the customized products and tools developed by these libraries to meet the needs of parliamentary library clients.

Introduction

Parliamentary libraries are highly specialized information environments, where knowledge of parliamentary tradition, legislation, public policy, and local history merge with personalized and professional service.

Meeting client needs in this fast-paced landscape necessitates the creation and maintenance of a variety of dedicated and unique reference services and resources. Library staffs' time and knowledge is skillfully invested in the curation, development, and maintenance of customized tools specifically designed to provide authoritative, timely, and non-partisan information in support of their legislative assemblies.

The Alberta Legislature Library and the Newfoundland and Labrador Legislative Library provide examples of this type of specialized resource particular to parliamentary information service.

Alberta

The Alberta Legislature Library has created two resources of current and historical data to support library reference service, Members, legislative staff, researchers, and the engaged public--Member Profiles and Constituency Profiles.

Member Profiles are legislative service summaries of all Members of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta who have served since 1905. Launched to the public in 2016, the online profiles include a photograph, dates of service, contested elections and constituencies, party affiliation, offices and roles, and legislative committee membership of each Member.

Library staff compile and verify the information using a wide variety of authoritative and primary sources. While much of this information has been reproduced and is available in published sources, the Member Profiles offer researchers a uniquely comprehensive and trusted source on the Legislative Assembly of Alberta and its Members.

The Constituency Profiles provide current and historical data regarding the province's electoral divisions, Members, and the electorate. The specific focus of the information presented reflects the geographic areas covered by the current electoral...

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