Category Archives: Libraries

Younger Americans’ Library Habits and Expectations

PEW project The PEW Institute has just released a very encouraging report on the library habits and expectations of the 18-25 years old group. Some may find it useful for strategic planning and discussions with stakeholders.  You can access the summary here and the full report in PDF format from the menu on the left hand side.

Leave a comment

Filed under Future, Libraries

Top trends in academic libraries

Creating the future for librariesI’ve just re-read the top 10 trends for academic libraries identified by the ACRL  Research Planning and Review Committee and published in: June 2012 College & Research Libraries News vol. 73 no. 6 311-320.

This document is the framework for the just released 2013 ACRL Environmental Scan.  It is interesting to compare these two to see how the focus is changing.

For those who missed it or don’t have access to the archives of ACRL News, I’ve summarized below  the top trends from the report (Please note that these top trends are not listed in order of importance but alphabetically):

 Communicating value
Academic libraries must prove the value they provide to the academic enterprise.  Librarians must be able to convert the general feelings of goodwill towards the library to effective communication to all stakeholders that clearly articulate its value to the academic community.
Data curation
Data curation challenges are increasing as standards for all types of data continue to evolve; more repositories, many of them cloud-based, has to emerge; librarians and other information workers need to collaborate with their research communities to facilitate this process.
Digital preservation
As digital collections mature, concerns grow about the general lack of long-term planning for their preservation. Local digital collections are at risk when the individual institution lacks a comprehensive preservation plan.
Higher education
Higher education institutions are entering a period of flux, and potentially even turmoil. Trends to watch for are the rise of online instruction and degree programs, globalization, and an increased skepticism of the “return on investment” in a college degree.
Information technology
Technology continues to drive much of the futuristic thinking within academic libraries. The key trends driving educational technology are equally applicable to academic libraries: people’s desire for information and access to social media and networks anytime/anywhere; acceptance and adoption of cloud-based technologies; more value placed on collaboration; ; and a new emphasis on challenge-based and active learning.
Mobile environments
Mobile devices are changing the way information is delivered and accessed. An increasing number of libraries provide services and content delivery to mobile devices.
Patron driven e-book acquisition
Patron-Driven Acquisition (PDA) of e-books is poised to become the norm. For this to occur, licensing options and models for library lending of e-books must become more sustainable.  PDA is  an inevitable trend for libraries under pressure to prove that their expenditures are in line with their value.
Scholarly communication
New scholarly communication and publishing models are developing at an ever-faster pace, requiring libraries to be actively involved or be left behind.
Staffing
Academic libraries must develop the staff needed to meet new challenges through creative approaches to hiring new personnel and deploying or retraining existing staff.
User behaviors and expectations
Convenience affects all aspects of information seeking—the selection, accessibility, and use of sources. Libraries usually are not the first source for finding information. When queried, respondents describe the library as “hard to use,” “the last resort,” and “inconvenient.”
 

The ACRL asks the community for feedback and provides a venue to get involved and contribute to the ongoing discussion on the trends in academic libraries by participating in  OnPoint Discussion atwww.ala.org/acrl/conferences/onpoint.

Leave a comment

Filed under Future, Leadership, Libraries

Libraries of the future

The following visualization was adapted from PewInternet.com, of a keynote address for the 2013 State University of New York Librarians Association Annual Conference.

librarians of the future

Leave a comment

Filed under Future, Leadership, Libraries, technology

An interesting opinion piece on Open Access and the Humanities

Times Higher EducationThe latest issue of Times Higher Education contains an opinion piece  entitled
“Green open access can work for Humanities”  by Gabriel Egan, director of the
Centre for Textual Studies at De Montfort University, arguing that “the move to open access is desirable and inevitable for the arts as well as the sciences”.  By “the arts” he means, in accord with the British usage, what most of us would call “the humanities”, in general. You can access it here: http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/comment/opinion/green-open-access-can-work-for-the-humanities/2004323.article

This is not an unusually radical or visionary in formulation article, but a very strong and well argued plea, and one whose appearance academic librarians might want to take note of.

Leave a comment

Filed under Future, Leadership, Libraries, technology

The Road Scenes from the Postprint Apocalypse by Keuper

Leave a comment

Filed under books, Future, Libraries

Battle for the the Internet

The (British) Guardian has just published an interesting investigation into the several attempts to control the Internet – see it at:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/series/battle-for-the-internet.

To me this is investigation is the perfect case for the libraries as it shows that the decentralized design of the Internet can be tamed by the commercial powers of the few. This indicates clearly that that the Internet even at this early stage is not a safe storage for all the human knowledge, as many enthusiasts claim, but that there is a vital need to have the records of our culture stored in various formats in multiple decentralized locations.  If  we fail to convince now the people around us that such places that are publicly funded and provide free access to knowledge and information are still necessary, the Fahrenheit 451 scenario is not too far removed from reality.   Indeed, it is a huge professional responsibility on all of us to prove through our work and inventiveness that libraries are the institutions that can fulfill this mission.

Leave a comment

Filed under Future, Leadership, Libraries

Virtual Tour of Bora Laskin Law Library on Youtube

The layout of the library I work at is quite confusing for people who use it for the first time and, as such, perhaps it discourages them from coming back again.

With the help of part-time library assistants,  I created a virtual library tour to address the problem.  I hope we may play in on the plasma screen in the library close to the main entrance. This would alleviate some of the problems that first time library users encounter trying to  locate a book by call number in the evenings or the weekends when the one staff member who is working at that time cannot leave the circulation desk to assist these users.

I am still working on it, but here is the first draft posted on youtube as it is:

Leave a comment

Filed under Libraries, media