“We do not need to compete with google.”

This is what Mary Grace P. Golfo-Barcelona, Dean, School of Library and Information Studies, University of the Philippines Diliman said during a webinar on Nutrinet: Thriving during the Pandemic, as part of Nutrition Research Information Network’s (NUTRINET) 35th anniversary.

Barcelona said that the challenge for the librarians and libraries in the era of digitization is how to make reliable and relevant resources that are available online more accessible to the researchers, and to make what’s available in prints that are not available online be digitized and transformed to formats that are more readily accessible to the users.

As libraries move on and emerge into complete digitalization of libraries and making the institutional repositories readily accessible anytime to target users, there is no need to compete with Google, she added.

Barcelona encouraged her colleagues in Nutrinet to continue to work together in building the most comprehensive repositories of information that respond to the needs not of all researchers, but rather, their target community of researchers, knowing that other network of libraries will continue to do the same.

“With the end goal of creating your version of universal libraries that are relevant, accurate, reliant, accessible and readily available,” Barcelona said.

While it is not possible to completely build a universal library alone, which is what google wanted to achieve digitally, with the help of different library and information networks such as Nutrinet, librarians can aspire to come up with the most comprehensive digital collections of resources, specifically selected to fit the specific research needs of the community of users, within the available resources that member libraries have.

Former members were asked what they think was the most memorable thing being with the NUTRINET. One cited the difficulty of finding certain information because journals were expensive in the old days.

“During the times na napakahirap ng mga information, probably, for one, because very expensive ang pag-purchase ng mga journals, it was NUTRINET that helped one agency to get access to journals or yung mga publications that are otherwise expensive,” Dr. Zenaida Nar, former NUTRINET member from DOST-FNRI, said.

NUTRINET was established in 1987 to form an information network on food and nutrition research and development, of which the goal is to promote and improve the flow of nutrition R&D information in the country by facilitating exchange of information among different nutrition and related agencies. From the initial 14 member institutions from 1987 to 1999, NUTRINET now has 24. The Department of Science and Technology-Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI) hosted the 35th year anniversary event. (30)