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What's New

Library and Archives Canada Partners with the British Library, the Library of Congress, and the National Library of Australia on RDA Implementation

OTTAWA, October 22, 2007 - Four national libraries have joined forces to implement a new standard for resource description and access designed for the digital environment in which libraries now operate. Library and Archives Canada, the British Library, the Library of Congress, and the National Library of Australia have agreed on a coordinated implementation of RDA: Resource Description and Access, the successor to the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules.

These national libraries, together with representatives from professional library associations in Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States, are members of the Committee of Principals which oversees the work of the Joint Steering Committee for Development of RDA, which is responsible for developing RDA.

"We look forward to implementing RDA. It will provide us with a standard to respond to current and future challenges and opportunities for resource discovery," said Ingrid Parent, Assistant Deputy Minister, Documentary Heritage Collection Sector at Library and Archives Canada.

RDA addresses the needs of the future by providing a flexible framework for describing all types of resources of interest to libraries. RDA guidelines will be easy and efficient to use, as well as compatible with internationally established principles, models and standards. In addition, RDA will maintain continuity with the past, as data created using RDA will be compatible with existing records in online library catalogues.

The libraries plan to implement RDA by the end of 2009. To ensure a smooth transition to RDA, the four national libraries will work together where possible on implementation matters such as training, documentation and any national application decisions. Regular updates will be issued by the group to keep the library communities in their countries informed on RDA implementation progress and policy decisions.

Contacts for additional information:

  • Library and Archives Canada: Ingrid Parent, Assistant Deputy Minister, Documentary Heritage Collection Sector
  • British Library: Caroline Brazier, Head of Resource Discovery (
  • Library of Congress: Beacher J. E. Wiggins, Director for Acquisitions & Bibliographic Access (
  • National Library of Australia: Pam Gatenby, Assistant Director General Collections Management (

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Pauline M. Portelance
Senior Media Relations Officer
Library and Archives Canada

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