Digital Content Working Group


The CULC/CBUC Digital Content Working Group was established in 2010 to advocate for access to affordable, sustainable digital content for public libraries. To date, the team has developed position statements, led media campaigns, and launched national programs to advocate for public libraries. The group works extensively with publishers, vendors, government agencies and other global partners to promote the library’s role in electronic resource use, to lobby for changes to licensing and access models, and to actively engage in pilot projects to improve public library digital media access.


Current library access models for digital content are based on restrictive licensing terms and high prices that far exceed the cost of the same content in print. This prevents libraries from building diverse digital collections that retain a broad range and depth of content over time. These challenges mean that public libraries are unable to grow digital collections without increasing budgets; for every new title licensed, another title must be allowed to expire.  As public use of digital content continues its strong growth, libraries are unable to explore the full potential of digital content or offer the full breadth of it to our patrons. This disproportionately impacts low income library users who rely on the library to provide content that they cannot afford to purchase, and readers with disabilities who rely on the accessibility features available in digital content.

Digital Content Working Group Members

  • Kay Cahill, Director, IT & Collections, Vancouver Public Library (co-chair)
  • Jennifer Stirling, Manager, Digital Services & Collections, Mississauga Public Library (co-chair)
  • Lisa Radha Vohra, Director, Collections & Membership Services, Toronto Public Library (recording secretary)
  • Sarah Macintyre, Acting Division Manager, Client Services, Ottawa Public Library
  • Vicky Varga, Executive Director, Collections, Marketing & Technology, Edmonton Public Library
  • Dave MacNeil, Manager, Collections & Access, Halifax Public Library
  • Mélanie Dumas, Directrice de la collection de la Grande Bibliothèque chez Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec

Current Projects

  • One eRead Canada
  • Palace Project Canadian Launch
  • Vendor Advocacy
  • Government Advocacy
  • Sector Awareness
  • Joint Taskforce on eContent Availability