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Existing SIGs


FOLIO Special Interest Group (SIG) Engagement

Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are officially sanctioned by the FOLIO/OLE Product Council and provide forums for FOLIO participants with similar technology needs, geographic area, or topical interest. The primary goal of a SIG is to form consensus on FOLIO functionality through the creation of documents, reactions to prototypes, and code snippets. They allow users to exchange ideas, develop shared goals for the FOLIO project, and research and develop new interchange standards with widely used software. 

SIG Creation and Review

Priority SIGs will be generated from goals and deliverables outlined in the FOLIO Roadmap. A SIG is created by way of a Proposal for Engagement.  The proposal should contain the name of the SIG, a paragraph describing the purpose of the SIG, contact information for the convener, the names of those proposed to be members of the group, and (when appropriate) expectations for outcomes from the SIG.  New SIG Proposal for Engagement documents are reviewed by the Product Council to ensure any overlap with other SIGs is intentional and that related SIGs know about each other’s work.  SIGs may revise their Proposal for Engagement at any time, and SIGs automatically renew each year when there is substantial activity in the preceding 12 months.  SIGs that do not meet this requirement may be retired and archived by decision of the Product Council. 

SIG Setup Checklist

Check the SIG Setup Checklist for setting up communications resources for your team.


The genesis of a SIG can also begin by first calling for a “BOF” (birds of a feather). A BOF is a meeting (in-person or virtual) to explore whether there is interest in creating a recognized SIG. If there is, the participants of the BOF write a Proposal for Engagement for review by the Product Council.. Anyone can join a BOF or a working group.

Example: Gwendolen calls a BOF on ERM application design and invites subject matter experts to participate. After a mailing list discussion and a few audio conference calls, Gwendolen asks on the for a show of interest in forming a working group on “ERM App Design”. There is significant interest, and the group selects Gwendolen as convener and begins drafting a charter for the new working group.

SIG Variants and Outputs

The output of a SIG may vary according to the scope of proposed engagement. SIGs have three variants or models: Working Group (WG), Research Group (RG), and Topical Group (TG). The following variants articulate types of outcomes according to the general idea of a group’s scope:

Working Groups (WG) have a very focused scope: to produce a specific type of output called a FOLIO Draft.  A FOLIO Draft is a lightweight specification, recommendation, or interoperability document. This can include APIs, user interface designs, technical or process guidelines, etc. FOLIO Drafts should be brief; a WG has no formal ability to make standards or direct the development of software, and therefore Drafts must be easy to implement so that people will use them.

Research Groups (RG) do not necessarily produce an output. An RG explores a particular area of research that might be broad or narrow. It may produce recommendations that can serve as inputs to a WG, or may recommend the formation of a WG.

Topical Groups (TG) are the least constrained type of working group. They do not produce outputs, but are essentially discussion groups that take up a subject of interest. The charter of a TG simply describes the intended scope of discussion. 

SIG Leadership and Communication 

The SIG convener is a person(s) selected by the group participants to facilitate, and to some extent moderate, the group’s discussions and activities. The convener tries to make good decisions about, for example, at what point rough consensus has been reached and therefore the discussion should move on to another topic. SIGs typically have a single convener, but can have up to three if needed.  SIG conveners coordinate meeting agendas and ensures that minutes are posted to the SIG's wiki space.  Conveners, or someone designated by the conveners, are responsibile for communicating SIG activities to the Product Council to promote inter-SIG communication and coordination.

SIG members agree to abide by the Code of Conduct.  To facilitate activity, SIGs have Wiki space for documents, a Discuss category and Slack channel for asynchronous and synchronous communication, and access to conference call services.  (See Communications wiki page).  SIGs have a name (e.g. “Authentication/Authorization”) and a short token (e.g. “AUTH”) that will be consistently used across all communication platforms.

SIG will have a Category on Discuss with an email address that can receive new Topic submissions.  The Category short name and the username of the email address will be the SIG’s token (e.g. an email address of “”).  

 Each SIG will be set up as a Confluence Space on and put into the ‘SIG’ category.  The Confluence Space identifier is the SIG’s token.  All SIG members will have a profile in that, at a minimum, contains each member’s name, contact information, company/institutional affiliation and job title.   SIG wikispaces will have a blueprint that:

  • Records its Proposal for Engagement
  • Adds meeting agendas/notes page templates
  • Request for Engagement template
  • Home page template

Each SIG will have a Channel on Slack. The channel name will be the SIG’s short token.

Proposed SIGs 

Scholarly Communication Management

The Scholarly Communication SIG works with developers to explore ways that Folio can be developed to support the research process from beginning to end, improve researcher access to information, dissemination of new research and scholarship, and incorporate meaningful metrics of use and impact of this new research and scholarship. To help FOLIO plug into the complex inter-relationships of scholarly communications this SIG will consider the following: How does the FOLIO platform engage with these functions? Are they all necessarily separate systems that require coordination and coherence? What does FOLIO provide libraries seeking to enhance and support Open Access Publishing? Can FOLIO assist librarians seeking to play a role with content and data that is publication-bound (open or closed) in ensuring appropriate handling, deposit, identity, and tracking? 

From: A Network Approach to Scholarly Communication Infrastructure, Rebecca Kennison and Lisa Norberg

Deferred SIGs (comments in 10/20/16 minutes)

Linked Data



Expected Outcome(s):


Teaching & Learning SIG


6 Implications of the Next-Generation Digital Learning Environments (NGDLE) Framework, Malcolm Brown


Expected Outcome(s):


Researcher Services SIG (includes research data)



Expected Outcome(s):


Inter-Institutional Services (aka Consortia)

Purpose: To work on use cases of inter-institutional relationships that FOLIO should/could/must support. Certainly patron-initiated borrowing, but also things like shared acquisitions, shared cataloging, etc. I’d look at GBV, hbz, UMaryland, and Cornell (with Columbia in tow). MIT Catalog who asked about P2P sharing?

While there are library networks that operate as service providers, we should consider that most academic libraries are dependent on resource sharing models in heterogeneous configurations - two points here: consortial services are important to everyone, not just consortia offices, and most libraries operate in multiple consortia.

Also issues of sharing patron data to enable new patron-driven services - we should think about this being a protocol driven request from one system to another that approves a patron for a service in the requesting system.


Expected Outcome(s):



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