The Irving K. Barber Learning Centre recently launched its Small Business Accelerator Program. The SBA initiative was originally conceived by David Lam Management Research Library librarian Jan Wallace during her term as interim director of the IKBLC. The concept began with a visit from an economic development officer from Nelson, BC, who was seeking assistance in strengthening the business skills of entrepreneurs in the region. Over the past two years, staff at the IKBLC have been developing the portal, and testing it with community members throughout the province.
Based on industry research guides created in the David Lam Library at Sauder School, the SBA features dozens of guides on researching small businesses in BC, as well as interactive tools for would-be entrepreneurs to communicate with each other, and for other subject experts to add information to the portal.
IKBLC Community Services Librarian Aleha McCauley is leading a team who will visit communities across BC to teach secondary market research skills to community members, just as the David Lam librarians teach those skills to business students at Sauder.