Past Seminars

In most years SLUOC, in conjunction with State Library Victoria, organises Forums and Seminars that explore some aspect of the Library collections or research interests and needs of Library users.

Publications associated with some of these seminars are also available – for full details, see PUBLICATIONS page.


On Time!

A seminar on the national timetable collection of the Australian Timetable Association

Saturday 3 August 2019

Royal Historical Society of Victoria, 239 A'Beckett Street, Melbourne, 1.15 pm – 5.00 pm

Held in association with the Australian Timetable Association

Speakers included: Donald Barker, David Hennell, Andrew James, John Mikita, Peter Pereyra, Len Regan, Sarah Ryan

More details on the 2019 seminar here

Discovering Robin Boyd: 

Exploring his legacy through his architecture and archive

Saturday 21 July 2018

Melbourne School of Design, University of Melbourne

Speakers included: Philip Goad, Miles Lewis, Jane Hinwood, Alan Pert, Kai Chen, Kate Gray, Louise Wright & Mauro Baracco

More details here 

The Magic of the Arts

Saturday 1 July 2017

Experimedia, State Library of Victoria, 1.30 pm - 4.00 pm

A delve into the riches of the State Library's Arts Collection. SLUOC Vice-President Ian Keese introduced the speakers.

Dominique Dunstan (SLV) gave an overiew of the Arts Collection, including the Alma Magic Collection.

Alison Inglis (University of Melbourne) spoke on the Fine Arts Collection, particularly the Fine Arts pamphlets.

Dermot McCaul (SLV) presented on popular music collecting.

Regrettably, Marshall McGuire was unable to attend. He had been scheduled to give a talk with musical examples on the collection of Australian composer Peggy Glanville-Hicks.

After a short break there was time for audience questions and the opportunity to view some items from the collection.

Keeping the Originals

Saturday 16 July 2016

Red Rotunda Gallery, State Library of Victoria (off the Cowen Gallery)

The Seminar considered the role of the Library in collecting, preserving and making available the physical objects that underpin Victorian and Australian history.

Panellists included State Library staff Des Cowley (History of the Book), Manuscripts (Kevin Molly) and Madeleine Say (Pictures), and former President of the Book Collectors (Victoria), Richard Travers. The discussion was moderated by Wallace Kirsop (Ancora Press, Monash University).

The Seminar was of particular interest to community organisations concerned about the long term preservation of their archives.


e-Publishing and Public Libraries: Challenges and Opportunities

Saturday 23 May 2015

This seminar continued the discussion about the changing role of public libraries in the digital age and looked at how electronic publishing affects access to publications.

Traditionally, under Legal Deposit legislation, State and National Libraries endeavoured to maintain a copy of all material published within their jurisdiction, whether books, journals or magazines – and later CDs and DVDs. These were catalogued, stored and available to all library users.

Electronic publishing has changed all this in a variety of ways:

  • Individuals can 'publish' their own eBooks and bypass legal deposit
  • If a library purchases an e-Book there may be restrictions on allowing access to it
  • Journals published electronically become the 'property' of large commercial organisations who on-sell the rights and have no legal obligation to maintain copies of material they no longer see as being of commercial value.

The seminar asked the questions:

  • What does legal deposit mean in the digital age?
  • What is the role of aggregated e-publishing such as Informit and Cengage?
  • How 'open' is Open Access?
  • What does all this mean for e-Book authors and publishers?
  • What is the State Library of Victoria's current and planned responses to these issues?

Presenters and panellists (PowerPoint presentations are available as PDFs on the links below):

Ian Keese (President SLUOC): Welcome

Jo Ritale (Manager Collection Development & Discovery SLV): Introduction: An Overview of Digital Collection Formats and Challenges

Chris Butler (Manager Collection Resources SLV): Legal Deposit in the Digital Age: Collecting Digital Publications at the SLV

Lisa Peddey (Continuing Resources Team Leader SLV): Connecting Not Just Collecting (part 1); Connecting Not Just Collecting (part 2)

Paul Mercieca (Lecturer in Information Management and Digital Publishing RMIT): Public Access and Commercial Interests

Sarah Slade (Manager Storage & Digital Collection Services SLV): Digitisation and Accessibility (part 1); Digitisation and Accessibility (part 2); Digitisation and Accessibility (part 3); Digitisation and Accessibility (part 4); Digitisation and Accessibility (part 5)

Peter McMahon (Director Digital Strategy SLV)


Research in the Digital Age – Part 2

Saturday 10 May 2014

The second seminar on digisation focused on how to preserve and have access to material that has already been digitised. Presenters: Howard Quenault (Director, Computer Management Techniques); Peter Pereyra (Mechanics' Institutes Victoria); Steven Chang, who worked on a project at Melbourne University archiving the work of Certified Practising Accountants (Australia).

Research in the Digital Age – Part 1

Saturday 5 October 2013

Libraries were originally set up to store physical objects such as books, manuscripts, journals, newspapers and ephemera. What are the implications today for libraries and researchers in an increasingly digital world where knowledge becomes fragmented – in a variety of different electronic formats – and shifting – where any item can be continually updated?

Within this context this seminar explored the following areas:

  • With an increasing amount of material being 'born digital' what are the current strategies of libraries in preserving this and what are seen as the future challenges.
  • What are the issues we as scholars and researchers are being confronted with and how can the contemporary library support us?
  • Legal deposit was intended to ensure that any item produced would be available to researchers. What are the challenges posed in achieving this in a digital age and how can these challenges be met?
  • Traditionally cataloguing was the key to accessing library material. What are the challenges for cataloguing today?

The seminar was directed at bringing together two groups, (1) those currently engaged in research and (2) library personnel involved in or interested in this area.

Presenters: Peter McMahon (Director - Digital Strategy, SLV); Philip G Kent (University Librarian, The University of Melbourne); Howard Quenault (Director, Computer Management Techniques)

For the full program, biographies of presenters follow this link

The Research Vocation of the Library

Saturday 12 May 2012

In this seminar, SLUOC brought library personnel and scholars together to explore ways in which they can work more closely together. Some of the issues that were investigated were:

  • What role should libraries play in supporting research in a digital age and how can this be balanced against the needs of the general public?
  • What innovative ways are currently being used by libraries in Australia and internationally to support scholarly research?
  • What are the needs felt by scholars currently doing research and how might libraries best serve these needs?
  • How can libraries and scholars obtain financial support from business, government and philanthropic sources while still maintaining their scholarly independence?


Attics, Cellars, Sheds and Boxes Under the Bed: Collecting and Caring for Original Materials

13 November 2010

The emphasis of the 2010 seminar was on ephemera and items that fall outside the mainstream.

Newspapers as Medium and Message

29 May 2009

Doing Research in the Library of the Twenty-First Century

19 May 2007