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Surviving the future: A strategic response for academic librarians

Surviving the future: A strategic response for academic librarians



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ACL2008 ACL2008 Presentation Transcript

  • Surviving the revolution A strategic response for academic librarians Frank Quinn ( [email_address] ) Point Loma Nazarene University Association of Christian Librarians June 11, 2008 Available online at http://www.slideshare.net/quinnjf/acl2008
  • Revolution? What revolution?...
  • Your mileage may vary…
  • Reference Statistics in ARL Libraries, 1995 to 2003
  • Total Circulation in ARL Libraries, 1995 to 2003
  • What about collection development ?
    • Approval plans
    • Subject specialists
    • From ownership to access
  • Whatever happened to business as usual? del.icio.us
  • From David Lankes, http://ptbed.org
  • On your campus, who’s responsible for…? Collections of books and journals Course management software Database purchases Information resource instruction Application innovation Bibliographic management software Institutional repositories / digital resources management
  • The other side of the coin—what resources and services does your library provide that might be provided by someone else?
  • #1. Erosion aka , gradual disintegration The trends are against us. If we do nothing different, our influence will erode, and we will become, once more, collections of books, primarily of interest to scholars in the humanities. For a time….
  • #2. Disintermediation Obsolete? ”
  • #3. Metamorphosis Modest changes haven’t served us well in recent years. We’re making marginal improvements but to existing library resources and services—and in an environment of disruptive technologies.
  • Our responses to environmental change and disruptive technologies have been essentially tactical. What is needed is a more strategic response , more future- and goal-oriented, more focused on (forgive me) “the big picture.” “ Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.”
  • Five strategic responses
    • Creating digital libraries of rare and unique holdings
    • Establishing institutional repositories for research and other intellectual capital
    • Providing the infrastructure for open access journals
    David Lewis, in the May 2008 C&RL News , advocates commitment to a curatorial role, characterized by…
    • Increasing partnerships with faculty to enhance learning outcomes— “the embedded librarian”
    • Transforming the library into a teaching department? MLS  PhD?...
    Crowley (2001), Guskin and Marcy (2003), and Smith (2006) all make strong cases for the increasing importance of the teaching role.
    • Be proactive, “become a salesperson”
    • Leave the library
    • Embrace transparency
    Grossman (2006), Casey and Stephens (2008), and others have spoken to the need to change how we think about communicating with stakeholders.
    • Reactive response - the Brandeis model, aka tiered reference…
    • First popularized in mid- to late-1990s.
    • Example: IPFW (http://www.lib.ipfw.edu/706.0.html)
    Crowley (2001) , Grossman (2006) , and Lewis (2007) suggest rethinking traditional desk reference.
    • On-demand reference by e-mail, chat, IM, FaceBook, MySpace….
    • Migration to information literacy program – emphasis on teaching, relationships with students (“My Librarian”)
    • Tiered, with “on call” librarians during most open hours
    Sontag and Palsson (2007) call the Brandeis model “the first step toward eliminating the desk altogether.”
    • “ Technologies to Watch” (from The Horizon Report )
    • Social computing (del.icio.us)
    • Personal broadcasting (blogs, podcasting)
    • Cell phones (Google Locator / 1 800 466-4411)
    The Horizon Report (2006), Brantley (2008), Rainie (2008), and others emphasize socio-technological responses.
    • Peter Brantley, executive director of the Digital Library Federation, writes:
    • “ Libraries always underestimate
    • the rate and impact of change.
    • As a result, libraries risk irrelevance
    • to young people, who have
    • different expectations for online
    • information and participation….”
    • “ Libraries must change.
    • We need to be focused on
    • engaging the world,
    • empowering people, thinking
    • much more ambitiously, and
    • sometimes taking risks that we
    • think might border on foolish.”
    • Libraries Must Be Portable.
    • Libraries Must Tell Stories.
    • Libraries Must Help People Learn.
    • Libraries Must Help Forge Memory.
    • Libraries Must Study the Art of War.
    Brantley’s “Library Mantras” — a selection
  • Five strategic responses
  • For Discussion 1. How do these responses compare / contrast with traditional library functions, i.e., technical and public services, collection development, preservation?... 2. How might these responses be informed by Christian values and beliefs? 3. What are the implications of these responses for LIS education?
  • Questions?
    • Frank Quinn ( [email_address] )
    • Point Loma Nazarene University
    • Association of Christian Librarians
    • June 11, 2008
    • Presentation available online at
    • http://www.slideshare.net/quinnjf/acl2008
  • Selected bibliography
    • ARL Statistics, Interactive Edition. 2003. Webpage. Charlottesville, VA:
    • University of Virginia. Available online at http://fisher.lib.virginia.edu/arl/index.html .
    • Bennett, Scott, et al. 2005. Library as place: Rethinking roles, rethinking space. Washington, DC: Council on Library and Information Resources. Available online at http://www.clir.org/pubs/reports/pub129/pub129.pdf .
    • Branin, Joseph J. 2008. “The future of academic libraries at the beginning of the
    • 21 st century.” Presentation given to “Florida Library Association,” April 23.
    • Available online at http://tinyurl.com/552pq5 .
    • Brantley, Peter. 2008. “Architectures for collaboration: Roles and expectations for digital libraries.” EDUCAUSE Review 43, no. 2 (March/April): 30-38. Available online at http://tinyurl.com/6h766e .
    • Cain, David, and Gary L. Reynolds. 2006. “The impact of facilities on recruitment and retention of students.” Facilities Manager 22, no. 2 (March/April): 54-60.
    • Available online at http://www.appa.org/files/FMArticles/fm030406_f7_impact.pdf .
    • Casey, Michael, and Michael Stephens. 2008. “Transparency, Planning & Change:
    • See-through libraries.” Presentation given at Computers in Libraries 2008 (
    • Arlington, VA). Available online at http://tametheweb.com/talks08/StephensCaseyCIL.pdf .
    • Contra Costa County Library. 2008. “Library-a-Go-Go program first in the nation offering book lending machines.” 2/11/08 press release. Available online at http://ccclib.org/press_releases/library-a-go-go.html .
    • Crowley, Bill. 2001. “Tacit Knowledge, tacit ignorance, and the future of academic
    • Librarianship.” College & Research Libraries 62, no. 6 (November, 2001): 565-
    • 584. Available online at http://tinyurl.com/58nrt8 .
    • De Rosa, Cathy, Lorcan Dempsey and Alane Wilson. 2004. The 2003 OCLC environmental scan: Pattern recognition: A report to the OCLC membership. Dublin, OH: OCLC. Available online at
    • http://www.oclc.org/reports/escan/toc.htm .
    • Grossman, David. 2006. "A Lesson from Portugal, or Fighting Disintermediation." Searcher 14, no. 4: 45-47. Academic Search Premier , EBSCO host .
    • Guskin, Alan E., and Mary B. Marcy. 2003. “Dealing with the future now: Principles for creating a vital campus in a climate of restricted resources.” Change 35 (July/August): 10-21. Available online at http://tinyurl.com/6f9n5u .
    • Heilprin, Laurence B. 1991 (copyright 1980). “The library community at a technological and philosophical crossroads: Necessary and sufficient
    • conditions for survival.” Journal of the American Society for Information
    • Science 42, no. 8: 566-573.
    • The Horizon Report. 2006. Austin, TX: New Media Consortium; Boulder, CO: EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative. Available online at http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2006_Horizon_Report.pdf .
    • Lankes, R. David. 2008. “The Dewey-Level shift.” Presentation given at the
    • Information Futures Institute, Berkman Center, Cambridge, MA (posted
    • 4/12/08). Available online at http://quartz.syr.edu/rdlankes/Presentations/2008/IFIExport.pdf .
    • Lewis, David W. 2004. “’The Innovator's dilemma’: Disruptive change and academic libraries.” Library Administration & Management 18, no. 2: 68-74. Available online at http://hdl.handle.net/1805/173 .
    • _____. 2007. “A model for academic libraries 2005 to 2025.” Presentation given at “Visions of Change,” California State University at Sacramento, January 26,
    • 2007. Available online at http://hdl.handle.net/1805/665 .
    • _____. 2008. “Library budgets, open access, and the future of scholarly
    • communication: Transformations in academic publishing.” College and
    • Research Libraries News 69, no. 5 (May): 271-73.
    • Lorenz, Lindsay. 2008. “University students relying more on electronic research than ever before.” The Good 5¢ Cigar: Student Newspaper at the University
    • of Rhode Island 4/11/08. Available online at http://tinyurl.com/6o2x5j .
    • Rainie, Lee. 2008. “Libraries solve problems.” Presentation at Computers in
    • Libraries 2008 (Arlington, VA) . Available online at http://tinyurl.com/63drb8 .
    • Ross, Lyman, and Pongracz Sennyey. 2008. "The Library is Dead, Long Live the
    • Library! The Practice of Academic Librarianship and the Digital Revolution."
    • Journal of Academic Librarianship 34, no. 2: 145-152. Academic Search
    • Premier , EBSCO host .
    • Smith, Gregory. 2006. “Academic Libraries in Transition: Current Trends, Future
    • Prospects.” The Christian Librarian 49, no. 2: 101-108, 110-116.
    • Available online at http://tinyurl.com/6kr6tx . 
    • Sontag, Gabriela and Felicia Palsson. 2007. “No longer the sacred cow – No longer
    • a desk: Transforming reference service to meet 21 st century user needs.”
    • Library Philosophy and Practice (February). Available online at
    • http://www.webpages.uidaho.edu/~mbolin/sonntag-palsson.htm .