What's GLAM got to do with it?

Catriona Cannon

Catriona Cannon, Deputy Librarian and Keeper of Collections, Bodleian Libraries

Vice-President and Official Fellow (GLAM Liaison)

Blog Series: #reubenpeople

As Vice-President of Reuben and the Official Fellow for GLAM Liaison, I’m excited about the chance we have to explore new ways of doing things here, particularly when it comes to developing links between the College and the University’s Garden’s, Libraries and Museums (GLAM).

My University role is Deputy Librarian and Keeper of Collections for Bodleian Libraries, and I’m passionate about making known all the amazing opportunities that the Oxford’s cultural and scientific collections hold for researchers, teachers, students and the wider public. They open such great potential for inspiring cross-disciplinary collaboration, introducing new perspectives, and shedding light on challenging issues. 

The collections housed in Oxford University’s Gardens, Libraries and Museums are some of the world's most significant – they cover the breadth and depth of the natural world, global art and artefacts. Collectively, they are home to over 8.5 million objects and specimens, 13 million printed items, and 6,000 different types of plants. 

The collections – and the often world-renowned and always dedicated people who work amongst them – are an outstanding resource for scholars and students, and serve as a valuable means of engaging and inspiring the public, both in person and online.

Reuben students will benefit greatly from our strong links with GLAM – from the Collections Teaching and Research Centre physically on the College site, from our location near University Parks and next to the Natural History and Pitt Rivers Museums, from the presence of GLAM staff in our buildings, and from the expertise in our Fellowship. These connections will enrich the College’s academic activities and broaden the student experience.

GLAM collections are also deeply relevant to our focus on addressing challenges of the 21st century, especially around our core themes of artificial intelligence, environmental change and cellular life. In the summer term of 2021, I am planning a series of seminars jointly run by GLAM and Reuben, which will help demonstrate the potential of the University’s collections for research and engagement. At each seminar, a curator (or other specialist) from one of the GLAM institutions will team up with a fellow from the College to highlight an item or items from the collection that they think deserves to be better known, promotes discussion and opens new perspectives on our research. 

I can hardly wait for our first students to arrive next year, when they can join us on an exciting journey of discovery of Oxford's cultural and scientific collections through their student experience at Reuben.

Some of the highlights you can find among the University's Gardens, Libraries and Museums

Discover more about our links with GLAM

See Catriona's profile page