LAC Departmental Results Report 2022–2023

The Library and Archives Canada annual Departmental Results Report, tabled in the Commons, is available here.

Included were four mentions of genealog*, eight for census, and one for newspaper.

Good things are happening at LAC, like new physical facilities and much-renewed efforts to catch up on the ATIP backlog.

Five performance indicators were exceeded for the core responsibility of acquiring and preserving documentary heritage; one was met, and two were missed.

For the core responsibility of providing access to documentary heritage, all seven performance targets were met; three were exceeded. That’s a welcome improvement over four of six in the previous year.

Digitized (million)
2015-16 12
2016-17 9.3
2017-18 10.2
2018-19 4.8
2019-20 3.5
2020-21 2.2
2021-22 2.4
2022-23 3.5

LAC reported digitizing  a total of 3,480,613 images in 2022–23, including the digitization of the 1931 Census. That’s more then in the previous two years, still far short of the times when ten million images were digitized for titles like First World War personnel files, and passenger lists.

The digitization included 234,678 images (187 microfilm reels) from the 1931 census of Canada. Digitization from microfilm is much simpler than from hardcopy, and was performed by FamilySearch under an MOU. 

A further 284,101 Indigenous-related images in LAC collections were digitized as part of the We Are Here: Sharing Stories initiative. More are planned with earmarked funding of $25 million in the 2022 federal budget to support the identification, description and digitization of six million pages of records related to the federal Indian day school system.

What about the other 2,961,834 images digitized? Were they for public release, digitized in reponse to ATIP or other individual information requests, or something else? I’ve asked LAC Communications.

But more important, why is LAC’s baseline “digitization” goal so lacking in ambition when it’s the only affordable way to access LAC records for many of us across our enormous country?




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