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British Columbia’s Museum, Library, and Archives Associations Sign Partnership Agreement

March 25, 2017

The British Columbia Museums Association (BCMA), the British Columbia Library Association (BCLA), and the Archives Association of BC (AABC) signed a memorandum of understanding yesterday “to share expertise, embark on collaborative research projects, explore public outreach opportunities and identify joint funding ventures to strengthen the sector.”

Memorandum of Understanding


Founded in 1957, the British Columbia Museums Association (BCMA) creates a bright future for British Columbia’s museum, gallery, and related heritage communities through networking, advocacy, innovation, and professional development. It delivers programs and services to the benefit of its members and its sector at large, acting as the cultural and heritage information hub for British Columbia while providing a unified voice for the institutions, trustees, professional staff and volunteers.

The British Columbia Library Association (BCLA) leads the library community in advocacy, professional development, and support of intellectual freedom. It ensures that all British Columbians have equitable access to information, ideas and works of the imagination. BCLA builds partnerships and relationships between libraries, governments, and community organizations. Its goal is to advance the values of the Association and to promote a widespread understanding of the benefits of library and information services.

The Archives Association of British Columbia (AABC) was established in 1990. Its mission is to foster the development of the provincial archival community to better preserve amd promote access to British Columbia’s documentary heritage. Its goals include providing services to increase the capacity of archives throughout the province to preserve and provide access to B.C.’s documentary heritage; building and maintaining the provincial catalogue in support of the national catalogue; allocating National Archival Development Program and other funding to the best uses in support of its mission; and providing the infrastructture to support networking opportunities for members.

Shared Values

As professional associations, BCMA, BCLA and AABC agree to and uphold the following values which are foundational to both our membership and our partnership:

  • Intellectual and ethical integrity
  • Equal rights and dignity of all persons
  • Freedom of speech and freedom of inquiry
  • Respect and recognition of indigenous peoples and cultures
  • Commitment to using our shared capacity for research and education for the betterment of BC communities.

Protocol Objectives

BCMA, BCLA and AABC will encourage member participation in activities that will enhance learning opportunities and knowledge transfer among professionals and institutions. All Partners will work towards the following objectives:

  • Share professional expertise and knowledge to strengthen the capacity of all parties to advance their respective missions
  • Explore collaborative research projects to expand learning opportunities among the three Associations
  • Explore public outreach opportunities to spark community engagement with knowledge and ideas
  • Identify joint funding ventures for projects of mutual interest and benefit in the areas of knowledge curation and public education
  • Identify opportunities foe new membership categories within our Association to welcome allied professionals
  • Provide member rates at BCMA, BCLA and AABC conferences
  • Consider new awards to acknowledge and celebrate exceptional professionals and projects in our fields of expertise.

Terms of renewal

This MOU will remain in place for a period of three years, effective January 1, 2017. Annually, each organization that is party to the agreement will convene to discuss shared accomplishments, opportunities for further exploration and mutual professional interests. The outcomes of these discussions will be shared with each respective Board that is party to the MOU. At the end of the three years, each board will meet to consider continuing with the MOU.

Signed this day, March 24, 2017 in Surrey, British Columbia:

David Alexander, President, BCMA

Daphne Wood, President, BCLA

Cindy McLellan, President, AABC

News Release

First among provinces, BC’s GLAM sector signs MOU to build capacity for learning and discovery

Minister Peter Fassbender joins partners at Surrey City Centre Library for the historic event

Surrey, BC – The British Columbia Museums Association (BCMA), the British Columbia Library Association (BCLA) and the Archives Association of BC (AABC) announced the creation of a new partnership that formalizes cooperation amongst the province’s GLAM sector (galleries, libraries, archives and museums).

The BCMA, BCLA and AABC signed a memorandum of understanding outlining the organizations’ commitment to share expertise, embark on collaborative research projects, explore public outreach opportunities and identify joint funding ventures to strengthen the sector.

“B.C.’s galleries, museums, archives and libraries are vital cultural assets in communities throughout our province,” said the Honourable Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “With these key organizations working in unison to benefit B.C.’s vibrant creative sector, it will strengthen our social, cultural and economic well-being, and enhance the quality of life for British Columbians.”

In 2017, the partners will work together on a symposium for GLAM organizations and establish a new award to acknowledge and celebrate exceptional professionals and projects in the GLAM sector.

“As memory institutions, galleries, libraries, archives and museums have much in common,” said David Alexander, President, BC Museum Association. “We preserve and share knowledge and culture, and act as a spark for creation, understanding and connection.”

“This partnership represents our values in action,” said Daphne Wood, President of the BC Library Association. “We are proud to support the exchange of ideas and to provide the foundation for new discoveries by individuals and communities across the province.”

“The Archives Association of BC is excited to work closer with the BCLA and BCMA to highlight the vital role archives play in their work behind the scenes in the enabling of the finished product; the book, the exhibit, the PhD thesis, genealogical research or the newspaper article,” said Cindy McLellan, President, Archives Association of BC.



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