A futures exchangeTim Wales, Head of LibraryEBSLG Conference: Cambridge 18th June 2013
ABLD/EBSLG/APBSLG FUTURE OFBSCHOOL LIBRARIES SURVEYPART 1: BOOK EXTRACTImage Source: Dan Santana via Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dani-santana/3534299566/Ashgate PublishingISBN 9781409465652
Background• ABLD/EBSLG/APBSLG mailing list members wereinvited in August/September 2012 to complete ashort (10 question) “Delphi survey” to determineif there was any consensus around the shape ofthings to come for business school libraries.• 23 responses were received, of which 11 (48%)were from the USA, 9 (39%) from Europe and theremaining 3 (13%) were from the Asia-Pacificregion.
Results (1):Top 5 Future Challenges1. Technological challenges2. Disintermediation of libraries in delivering content3. Reduced budgets4. Institutional issues/politics5. User expectationsNot considered important:• Loss of physical space• International campuses/partners
Results (2): Other ChallengesThe relationship between the library and teachingComments related to the rapid changes to curriculum and theassociated disconnect between library and teaching staff.Free internet informationStudents’ perception that information is freely available online.The disconnected libraryEnsuring the library aligned with the bschool’s mission: the businesslibrary may not exist if institutional mergers were to occur.Library staffEnsuring that library staff had access to the appropriate training toensure the supply of the right kind of business specialists (andleaders) for the future.
Results (3): Top 5 Opportunities1. Specialist resource/research support2. Flexible study space provision3. Discovery support4. Information literacy5. Learning technologiesNot considered important:• Social media• iTunes U content/Library apps
Results (4): Future confidence?How confident are you that business schoollibraries will exist in 20 years time?6% had zero confidence52% very confident or confident22% undecided20% not confidentAnd…
Results (5): Free-text (+) commentWe are busier than ever in our library. Thereare so many databases with such complex,difficult-to-use interfaces and so manystudents studying Business that our jobsecurity seems assured to me (unlessstandards are lowered greatly and no onecares about the quality of the information theyare using).
Results (6): Free-text (-) commentI’m confident that business school librarians willexist but [business school] libraries maybe not.
THE BRIEF: WHAT KIND OF LIBRARYDO WE WANT OR NEED IN THE FUTURE?PART 2: LONDON BUSINESS SCHOOL LIBRARY VISIONINGThe Marylebone Centre: Source: Tim Wales (Flickr)2017 onwards
EMBEDDED LIBRARY RESEARCH TEAMVISION 1ResearchdisseminationResearchinformationDatamanagementResearchanalysisResearchperformanceCompliance
We have not discussed going e-only, partly because the need is notthere. If there is a space crunch again, I am sure we will get thepush.From my perspective, we could easily reduce our onsite holdingsby at least 50% but there are limitations on remote storage so weare not pushing. I think it will be a while before the publisherbusiness models make e-only a reality and I think the socialsciences are lagging the sciences. Even Stanford’s so-called“bookless” Engineering Library has at least 25,000 volumes andshows no signs of going bookless any time soon.One thing to look at is the behavior of the current undergraduates.Many of them still prefer paper for close reading.
OverallrankOpportunity LibraryHubVirtualLibrary1 Specialist resource/research support ½2 Flexible study space 3 Discovery support 4 Information literacy ½5 Learning technologies ½6 Research data management ½ ½7 Careers & entrepreneurship support ½8 Open access ½ ½9 Digitisation ½10 Knowledge management VISIONS V. THE FUTURES SURVEYBRINGING IT ALL TOGETHER
WHICH ONE WAS SELECTED?Q&AUsersupportComplianceResourcediscoverytwales@london.edu @timwales