As I begin my term as CRKN Chair, I have been impressed with and encouraged by CRKN’s vision of developing projects, partnerships, and initiatives that contribute to the Canadian research community and public. CRKN’s commitment to taking bold steps to achieve access to knowledge ensures its position as a significant stakeholder for universities, libraries, and heritage institutions in Canada and internationally.
Following extensive consultation with members and months of strategizing, CRKN launched the 2019-2024 Strategic Plan, the most ambitious plan to date, which strives to advance interconnected, sustainable access to the world’s research. I have been pleased to see how the Strategic Plan has created a clear focus for CRKN’s activities, which I look forward to supporting over the next several years.
Of the many accomplishments this year, I would like to highlight CRKN’s success in consulting with the Board, committees, and members in preparation for licensing renewals in 2020, leading to the creation of the Stakeholder Alignment Group. I would also like to highlight CRKN’s newest collaboration, the DataCite Canada Consortium– an exciting endeavour that will assist institutions and researchers across Canada in minting DOIs. In its heritage activities, CRKN continues to enhance the Canadiana collections, and improve the infrastructure that ensures this documentary heritage is preserved and accessible to researchers and the public. These advancements show exceptional progress towards objectives and set the stage for a bright future.
I would like to applaud the work of CRKN’s Board of Directors, committees, and task groups as they provide exceptional guidance and foresight in the development of CRKN initiatives. The dedicated participation of members and stakeholders has been constant as the organization takes on new challenges, and the volunteers that give time to the governance of CRKN are instrumental to CRKN’s success.
The work of CRKN is more important now than ever. The research landscape is changing rapidly, and it is necessary to respond proactively to these developments in order to continue to serve our member community. In closing, I would like to once again congratulate the CRKN Board, committees, task groups, and staff for their efforts and achievements this year. I look forward to continuing to work with you.
President and Vice-Chancellor, MacEwan University
Chair, CRKN Board of Directors
The Executive Director
As I look ahead to the opportunities presented by our 2019-2024 Strategic Plan, I am also pleased to reflect on the important work accomplished this past year towards the fulfillment of our strategic goals.
The licensing team with the guidance of the Content Strategy Committee continued to offer the best possible terms for members through negotiated licences. CRKN also took the next steps in advancing our innovative licensing program with the creation of the Stakeholder Alignment Group, which will support CRKN’s 2020 negotiation objectives as we move towards sustainable access to research content.
Open access to research continues to be at the core of CRKN business. We continued our partnership with Érudit and Coalition Publica, supporting the transition to open access for their scholarly journals. To further support open access globally, CRKN has continued its participation in initiatives including SCOAP3 and SCOSS, while nationally, we launched the CRKN Open Access Journals List. For the first time, CRKN hosted a full conference with a significant focus on CRKN’s future role in Open Scholarship in collaboration with other stakeholders in the research community.
Building on last year’s heritage activities and the transition to access at no charge, CRKN integrated the heritage collections content into two access portals, Canadiana and Héritage, and began the process of decolonizing descriptive subject headings used in the Canadiana collections. This important work will increase the accessibility of the collections and bring us closer to our goal of offering access to historical materials with up-to-date, accurate, and culturally sensitive metadata. The evolution of the Canadiana access and preservation platforms continued in line with community standards under the guidance of the Preservation and Access Committee.
Members of the team actively participated in several national and international meetings and committees, increasing our engagement with the community on issues of critical to our shared future.
In January 2020, CRKN, in collaboration with the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL), launched the DataCite Canada Consortium. This was an exciting development for CRKN’s work in supporting Persistent Identifiers (PIDs), which also includes management of the ORCID Canada Consortium. It has been a pleasure to increase CRKN’s participation in the research ecosystem through collaborations such as the DataCite Canada Consortium and the ORCID Canada Consortium, and I look forward to continuing to develop collaborative initiatives.
This year, CRKN welcomed Dr. Annette Trimbee, who became Chair of the Board of Directors following the 2019 Annual General Meeting. Dr. Trimbee replaces Dr. Alan Shepard, who completed his three-year term in October. CRKN is fortunate to have such excellent leadership from its Board, committees, and task groups, and I thank them for their expertise and unfaltering dedication in volunteering their time to enact CRKN’s mission and vision.
Finally, I am grateful to the CRKN team, who bring a sense of professionalism and enthusiasm to everything they do. We ended this financial year with the unforeseen closure of the CRKN offices due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and I have been amazed at the resilience and flexibility of staff in adapting to these changes. Together with them, I look forward to the next year of serving our membership and advocating for access to knowledge.