Undoubtedly, the national dissemination event in Greece, entitled “Enhancing the digital skills of the Library community“, was a very successful initiative! It was organized online on 27th September 2021 by the DAISSy Research Group of the Hellenic Open University (HOU). It triggered the interest of library professionals, experts and practitioners, representatives of authorities and institutions, active citizens, and more generally anyone interested in the digital evolution within the library world.
The event included six (6) speakers, was attended by more than sixty (60) participants and addressed not only the multiple challenges but also the significant opportunities of the libraries in the digital era, as identified through the BIBLIO project outcomes.
Prof Achilles KAMEAS, Director of DAISSy and Scientific Coordinator of the BIBLIO project in Greece, launched the event by welcoming the participants and presenting the valuable work done by the DAISSy Research Group of the HOU. The map of currently ongoing projects was impressive – he emphasized on the strong international character of the Group and its involvement and representation in international networks and scientific boards. He also addressed the firm links achieved by DAISSy in order to relate the BIBLIO project with other ongoing EU projects under implementation (such as DELTA, SILVHER, etc.) aiming at producing a net for the transfer of results and the enhancement of sustainability.
Then Ioanna SEFERLI, Librarian, representing the Distance Library and Information Centre of the HOU (DLIC-HOU) delivered a speech about the activities of this unit. She presented the e-services of the Centre and in parallel she pinpointed the extrovert nature of the DLIC operation in supporting both numerous initiatives of the Academic Libraries in Greece and projects carried out by the Schools and Research Groups of the HOU. In parallel she explained the role of the DLIC of the HOU as the fundamental associate partner of the DAISSy Research Group for the implementation of the BIBLIO project in Greece.
The Project Manager of BIBLIO and researcher of DAISSy-HOU, Eleni GEORGAKAKOU, took the floor and triggered the interest of the participants about the content of the project and its methodology. Through a brief presentation of all BIBLIO work-packages, she emphasized on the demanding project concept, its strong European partnership, its direct link with the needs and challenges of the modern library world and the effective way that the BIBLIO project addresses those challenges and provides tools that benefit the personal development of the library professionals.
The speech delivered by Thomas CHIOTIS, Archivist-Librarian at “Konstantinos Simitis” Foundation, followed. It included a detailed description of all types of the research carried out by the BIBLIO project and its findings. Thomas, emphasized on the need expressed by the librarians to update their skills to fulfill their tasks at work and more precisely, their need for strong basic digital skills to answer users’ queries and ensure a level of digital autonomy. He showcased how two new job profiles emerged and presented the expected multiple roles of the Community Engagement and Communication-CECO and the Digital Transformation Facilitator-DIGY.
Then, Leonidas PAPACHRISTOPOULOS, Librarian at DLIC-HOU, presented in detail the BIBLIO MOOC putting emphasis on the way it is linked with the research findings and the tasks of the new job role profiles of CECO and DIGY, so that to address them effectively. All BIBLIO MOOC modules were briefly described as well the timetable, study effort and benefits. Leonidas, also referred to the multi-dimensional content of the BIBLIO training program, by explaining that the MOOC is part of the modular training programme for the development of the competences included in the CECO and DIGY job role profiles, to be followed by the BIBLIO blended training course and the work-based learning activities.
The last speech of the event was delivered by Prof Maria Hatzinikolaou, who is a Professor of HOU and the Deputy Scientific Coordinator of the BIBLIO project in Greece. In parallel she is a member of the Administrative Board of the HEALink (Hellenic Academic Libraries link) and she is fully aware of the role of this association and its activities at national and international level. Therefore, she presented briefly a set of distinctive initiatives of the association and showcased how they are benefited by the BIBLIO findings. In addition, she emphasized on the relation achieved among the HEALink, the DAISSy and the DLIC-HOU towards the promotion as well as the exploitation of both the BIBLIO MOOC and the rest of the project deliverables.
The presentations were completed by announcing the BIBLIO MOOC call for registrations and its official launch on 4th October 2021, and explaining the registration process which was open until 11th October, and free of charge.
A brief but vivid discussion took place at the end of the event, through the exchange of questions-answers, comments and interventions by the participants. More precisely, they acknowledged the need for the digital autonomy of the library professionals and the new skills for coping with the challenges of serving their library users through a holistic approach, they made positive remarks on the research findings, they confirmed the importance of the BIBLIO MOOC and expressed their initial interest in its content.
The national event was organized in Greek, a pre-registration process was applied for attending it and all participants received certificates. The organizer has kept all related material (invitations, proof of promotional actions, registration forms, certificates, presentations, photos, etc.) within the dossier of the event.
The DAISSy Research Group of the Hellenic Open University (HOU), Coordinator of the event, is thankful to all organizations that supported the event (especially the DLIC-HOU being the associate partner), as well as the speakers, the experts and every participant for their contribution to the success of the organisation.