Interview with Marcial Reyes Batiancila

Face-to-Face with Marcial Reyes Batiancila

Student Representative, 2009-2011 Erasmus Mundus Digital Library Learning
Digital Library Learning through the Eyes of a Master Student


Downloadable PDF Interview

Digital libraries are both technological systems and organisations intimately bound up with multi-faceted research perspectives. Research themes not only include investigations into these broad areas but also information seeking behaviour and social processes such as learning and knowledge sharing, in addition to Digital Libraries as collections of content that need curation (collection, description, preservation, retrieval and so forth). Finally,  Digital Libraries are social institutions with a social mandate, and as such they are affected by social, demographic and legal issues. Digital Library Learning (DILL), a two-year international master programme funded by the European Union under the Erasmus Mundus programme, was aimed at taking forward this multi-faceted approach.

In November 2010, DILL joined forces with to host a one-day seminar aimed at energising and structuring thinking on how research findings by a team of international experts can inform education and research programmes at graduate and post-graduate level by fostering closer co-operation.

The Seminar hosted by the University of Parma, brought together and DILL representatives together with master students (pictured) from across the globe. Marcial Reyes Batiancila (pictured above) from the Philippines was one such Master student offering insights into his experiences at the Parma seminar. Here talks to Marcial to find out more.

Why did you choose this Master Programme?
My main reasons when applying for a DILL scholarship was to gain knowledge on digital librarianship and share my experiences and goals with fellow professionals, bringing international perspectives. This is a particularly important opportunity to assist myself and fellow Filipino librarians in unleashing our potential as information professionals, in acquiring new skills and gaining valuable insights into how information is organised in a digital environment, while also enhancing the role we play in the knowledge society. What’s more, the training provided through the Master Programme will help me achieve one of my professional goals to develop training programmes on digitisation initiatives and play an active role in developing a content-rich knowledge society.

What new knowledge have you gained from it and your experiences at other institutions?
The DILL Programme has provided us with so many opportunities to learn about both the theory and practice of digital librarianship. The Programme has also enabled us to interact with  DL experts from the four corners of the globe sharing their expertise, knowledge and experiences on recent development in the field. This has given us the real picture of what digital librarianship means in practice.

What did you like best about the Seminar and what is the main value-add you will be taking away with you?
The seminar delivered new insights into best practices fostered in the DL community and an understanding of how is working towards interoperability as a foundation for current and future DL initiatives. The seminar also brought value-add in terms of fostering collaboration  between experts, offering a good example for of Community of Practice where the core values are grounded in close co-operation and openness to share knowledge and learning among stakeholders. The Cookbook is what I liked most about the Seminar. The Cookbook is a good initiative and a powerful tool for sharing and managing knowledge.

How do you intend to take your experiences forward in the future?
It would very much like to share what I have gained from my studies here in Europe and my insights into with my colleagues in the Philippines, while also taking a leading role in the future in educating new DL professionals. I also wish to congratulate for organising such event and for giving us the opportunity to take an active part in it.

Stephanie Parker and Timea Biro, Trust-IT Services Ltd


Professional Profile

Marcial Reyes Batiancila, an International Master student in Digital Library Learning (IM-DILL) at the time of conducting this interview, comes the Island of Bantayan, Cebu in the Philippines. He is a librarian by profession, a graduate of Bachelor of Arts major in Library Science (1997) from the University of San Jose-Recoletos and has a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science (2007) from Cebu Normal University in Cebu City, Philippines.
An active member of both local and national library associations of the Philippines, Marcial has served as a member of the national Board of Trustees of the Philippine Librarians Association, Regional President of the PLAI-Southern Tagalog Region and has also worked as a visiting lecturer teaching LIS courses relating to ICT application in libraries.
His interests include library administration, cataloguing and classification, metadata, ICT application in libraries, library automation, digital archiving, digitisation, digital asset management, knowledge management, community of practice, and information architecture.