When: Friday, Feb 01 | 9:00 am - 10:30 am

Location: ICTC Humber

Days: Friday. Event Types: Session. Sectors: General. Subjects: Innovation, Open Data, and Technology.


Story City is an interactive map that uses audio, photographs and video to highlight ways in which Vancouverites are connected to their city. The map features over 700 stories recorded by individuals on the unceded land that Vancouver occupies, and has been a catalyst for sparking dialogue, building connections and deepening understanding between community members.

This session prepares library workers for the social and technical challenges in running and managing a community mapping project. Learn how to get stakeholder approval, community interest, and your technology online and on time. Join me as I take you through my experiences as the project manager of Vancouver Public Library’s Story City project, a Canada 150+ initiative.

This presentation will be aimed at staff creating new software platforms, at community librarians eager to record oral histories, and anyone generally curious about managing risks in high profile public projects. There will be several ‘interventions’ throughout the session where you will turn to the person next to you and come up with a solution to a real-world problem faced by my team. We will then discuss our rapid fire solutions in a group, evaluate them, and compare them to the team’s decisions at the time. We will learn from each other and help demystify the fear that surrounds these types of big projects.

My talk will tell the story of the project, but I will focus on three key areas of learning: 1) handling the social and ethical responsibility of collecting and curating oral histories; 2) organizing digital objects and making them discoverable; 3) managing projects for open-source platforms like Drupal and Islandora. Since VPL’s Story City mapping module is released under an open-source license, you could even start to plan your own digital repository or community map using the same tools!