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The AALL Spectrum® Blog is published by the American Association of Law Libraries. Submissions from AALL members and other members of the legal community are highly encouraged. Opinions and editorial views expressed are those of the authors and do not represent the official position of AALL. AALL does not assume any responsibility for statements advanced by contributors. Previously, the AALL Spectrum Blog was located at aallspectrum.wordpress.com.
7/22/2013 2:18:01 PM

Chapter Newsletter Highlights: WPLLA, LLAW & MALL

This post describes some articles in AALL chapter newsletters that are likely to be interesting to librarians outside those chapters.

The Spring 2013 issue of the Western Pennsylvania Law Library Association's WPLLA Newsletter contains several interesting articles, including a piece on using Martindale-Hubbell Law Directories to study diversity trends in the legal profession. Another article provides advice on questions from researchers who don't clearly express what information they are seeking, and a third piece collects resources on book repairs. Law librarians can perform some simple and inexpensive repairs that will extend the usable life of some books.

The Spring 2013 issue of the Law Librarians Association of Wisconsin's LLAW Briefs includes a report from the 2013 Library Technology Conference in Minnesota. Sessions at the conference discussed how libraries can advance social justice by providing access to and training for technology, website usability testing, distance education, and library branding.

The Spring 2013 issue of the Minnesota Association of Law Libraries' MALL Newsletter includes an article describing the Volunteer Librarians Coalition, a group of private law firm librarians in Minneapolis that provides legal research assistance to lawyers volunteering to serve low-income clients.

Posted By Benjamin Keele at 7/22/2013 2:18:01 PM  0 Comments
7/22/2013 1:41:49 PM

International Trade in Indigenous Cultural Heritage: Legal and Policy Issues

International Trade in Indigenous Cultural Heritage: Legal and Policy Issues

Edited by Christoph B. Graber, Karolina Kuprecht, and Jessica C. Lai

ISBN-13:  978 0 85793 830 5


Edward Elgar Publishing Limited

509 pages


Amazon list price $199.50 (U.S. dollars)


This title continues the work begun at a conference of the same name in 2011 hosted by the i-call Research Centre for International Communications and Art Law at the University of Lucerne in Switzerland. This would be an excellent purchase for libraries (and others) with an interest in indigenous cultures, cultural heritage, art, artistic expression, genetic information, traditional knowledge, and how all of those concepts interact with or intercept the law (domestic and international). Libraries that would particularly benefit would be academic law libraries with a specific art and/or international law collection or those specializing in the rights of indigenous peoples.

The book is divided into four parts:

  1. Methodology and Social Context
  2. International Law Perspectives
  3. Country Reports (United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand)
  4. Conclusions

There are more than 20 contributing authors from all of the countries mentioned in the country reports and more. They have backgrounds in subjects as varied as law, sociology, culture, communication, intellectual property, sustainable development, education, social policy, traditional knowledge, chemistry, and bioethics.

The very distinction between indigenous people and peoples is one of the many complex subjects to be considered. There is an in-depth discussion of who can legitimately exert control over cultural heritage. Another issue examined is not only who are the stakeholders, but how best to encourage participation of those stakeholders, particularly when the domestic legal system by which they are surrounded may not recognize their rights.

Many international institutions have a peripheral patchwork of documents and projects that skirt the issues of the international trade of indigenous cultural heritage. Among the institutions and programs or documents referred to in the book are: the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

Many unique distinctions are illuminated such as the notions of individual rights and collective rights, particularly as they pertain to property. The concept of self-determination is also recognized as a fundamental right of all peoples and informs the discussion of trade in cultural heritage.

By way of conclusion there is a discussion of where the issues stand now. It is generally agreed among the authors that trade in cultural heritage can benefit indigenous peoples if they have the choice when and whether to engage in that trade. There is also a feeling that national, rather than international, law and policy making solutions to these issues are the most promising.


Wanita Scroggs, JD, MLIS

International Law Librarian

Stetson University College of Law

Posted By Wanita Scroggs at 7/22/2013 1:41:49 PM  0 Comments
7/22/2013 12:08:11 PM

Recharge: Why Change Stalls and What You Can Do About It

Jevon K. Powell, an organizational psychologist specializing in change management, presented this session on managing large-scale change.  Powell was introduced by Madeline Cohen, who is the Director of the U.S. Courts 10th Circuit Library. 

Powell discussed what can be done to help insure a change initiative succeeds.  He stressed that employee involvement in teh process is crucial, though the involvement should be carefully structured. He also discussed reasons why change can frequently stall in organizations, including change fatigue, poor communication and planning for change, and fear of the unknown.  Powell described the common stall points that arise during change initiatives, and offered useful levers for moving the initiative past the road blocks.  He also stressed the importance of having metrics that can measure the effectiveness of the change initiative.

Powell's primary argument was that change advocates must adopt a conceptual model, or "change road map," for implementing change management systematically, in order to overcome these obstacles.  He briefly described the different models that have been developed, then focused in depth on the Head-Heart-Hands model developed by Gibson and Billings.  This is the model that he relies on in his consulting work with organizations undergoing large-scale change.  This model employs a grid, centered around thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, to insure that an organization addresses all aspects of a change initiative.  The grid allows the change leader to identify every action necessary, so that no crucial aspects of change management are missed.  This struck me as a very commonsense approach, and one that would help the change leader to make sure they focus on each of these areas in managing a new project or initiative.

Powell's provided several useful handouts, the most effective of which showed a detailed view of the Head-Heart-Hands model.  Powell was very effective at using humor to maintain interest throughout the session.  He also encouraged questions and feedback from the audience, and had the audience walk through several exercises during the program.  These efforts kept the audience engaged througout the 90 minute session.

Posted By Douglas Southard at 7/22/2013 12:08:11 PM  0 Comments