The Canadian Committee on Cataloguing (CCC) is one of the "author bodies" which previously developed and maintained the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules and now develops and maintains Resource Description and Access (RDA) under the auspices of the international Joint Steering Committee for the Development of RDA. Canadian proposals for additions and changes to RDA must be submitted to the Joint Steering Committee (JSC) through the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing.
Anyone is welcome to submit an RDA instruction revision proposal to the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing. However, it must be noted that there is a formal process for revising RDA which is paced to allow sufficient time for widespread consultation on any changes to the cataloguing code. This process requires patience on the part of the proposer. In other words, do not expect instant results from your initial proposal.
Each revision proposal goes through a lengthy review process from the national to the international level. The national review begins with the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing which determines whether or not the proposal should be formally submitted to the Joint Steering Committee for the Development of RDA.
If the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing decides to sponsor a revision proposal, it is presented as a formal CCC document and distributed to the other members of the Joint Steering Committee. The JSC members then discuss the revision proposal within their own constituencies. The JSC is composed of representatives from the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing, the Library of Congress, the American Library Association, the British Library, the Library Association, and the Australian Committee on Cataloguing.
This review process can take up to a year or more because of the necessity for broad consultation before a revision is adopted into the cataloguing code.
The first step you should take is to discuss your idea with colleagues in the cataloguing community in order to determine whether the problem you have identified is a shared concern. Keep in mind that changes to RDA can have cost implications in terms of training cataloguers, system infrastructure, record formats, etc.
If you feel that a revision is justified, the next step is to contact a representative of one of CCC's member organizations to request their consideration and possible sponsorship of the revision proposal.
Discussing your proposal with the CCC representative may reveal other issues or another way of addressing the problem. They can also advise you on the progress of your proposal once it is accepted into the stream of revisions under consideration.
The RDA instruction revision proposal is sent to all members of the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing for review and evaluation. Those members will consult further within their own constituent organizations.
Some of the criteria that are taken into consideration when evaluating a proposed revision are:
The proposal should be in the form of a dated memorandum which clearly indicates the name and organizational affiliation of the proposer.
The subject or title field of the memorandum should indicate the nature of the proposal and, where applicable, the rule numbers that are the principal focus of the proposed revision as well as the captions associated with those instructions.
To: Jane Doe, CAML representative to Canadian Committee on Cataloguing
From: John Smith, Head of Cataloguing, Nunavut University
Subject: Proposed revision to RDA, instruction 6.15, "Medium of performance"
The proposal should begin with a clear explanation of the problem which the revision aims to address and a justification for making the proposed change to RDA. An assessment of the impact of the proposed change should also be included.
Then the proposal should depict the proposed revision in terms of actual changes to the text of the latest edition of RDA. Any related changes that would be required for other instructions in RDA should also be indicated and explained.
If the proposed revision deals with a specific area of cataloguing practice that is the focus of one of the CCC's consulting associations, it should be sent to the Committee member representing that association. For example, proposals concerning the cataloguing of legal material should be submitted to the representative of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries.
General revision proposals should be sent to one of the voting members of CCC, i.e., the representatives for the Canadian Library Association, ASTED, or Library and Archives Canada. That CCC member will then consult further within his or her constituency and decide whether or not to sponsor and/or endorse the proposal for broader discussion within CCC.
The Secretariat of the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing may be contacted at the following address:
Canadian Committee on Cataloguing
Standards, Strategic Office
Library and Archives Canada
395 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0N4
Telefax: (819) 934-4388