Today, Ithaka S+R is co-publishing, with Columbia University Libraries, a summary report about a roundtable held over the summer about Copyright Education in Libraries, Archives, and Museums. This is the latest step by a group of copyright experts and educators towards strengthening and sustaining copyright education for memory institutions and the research and educational missions they serve. 

Ithaka S+R’s, in close partnership with Columbia’s Rina Elster Pantalony and Lyrasis’s Tom Clareson, helped to facilitate parts of the discussion. Today’s report summarizes that discussion. 

The roundtable participants examined existing copyright education practices and also explored unmet needs. Some key takeaways included:

  • The current models of copyright education have provided extensive outreach around copyright basics, but these models are not designed to provide more intensive education and may be unable to scale 
  • Adding virtual elements or an entirely virtual approach to delivering copyright education would add flexibility and achieve cost benefits. 
  • Reframing copyright education as policy training rather than legal training would allow it to be more readily embedded in the professional development needs of memory institutions.

On this basis, participants took first steps towards considering elements of a business model for the provision of this service.

Copyright education is essential to the 21st century memory institution, not only for documenting rights and source information but also as a contribution to determining trust and authority and advancing the preservation and access imperatives. This initiative to foster and expand copyright education as a vital aspect of professional development is one we should all support.

The PDF version of the report is available at Columbia University Libraries’ Academic Commons: