Monday, January 25, 2010

Discussion group 6: Library buildings

1. Does remote access to info make academic libraries irrelevant as a place?
1. Well, yes (thank you very much)
2. Not necessarily

What we know is that “Academic libraries are not ends in themselves.” (to quote Lorcan Dempsey)

2. What are the best uses of library space –
1. Open,
2. well lighted …
3. welcoming with comfortable spaces …
4. few draconian rules …
5. A place with areas for quiet study segregated off …
6. but many more areas where group study and meaningful conversation about life and / or research can occur.
7. A place with classrooms – to maximize the integration of the university mission … to have the teaching embedded within our facilities.
8. Many group study rooms.

3. Print collections …
1. For most of us print collections will be … smaller.
2. Not to be overly superficial but possibly
1. “fresher” … with research items (infrequently used) in shared print storage collection & or massive uc google book shared online / print collection off site ...)
3. We will prune our collections (monographs journals) aggressively
4. We will have a shared collection hub (regional hubs like the regional library facilities) …
5. We will come up with a reasonable method of sharing all the older items.
6. Print on demand may be prominent.

4. Library Service Desks
1. The service desk will be open, without barriers to the greatest extent possible …
2. We will be available … on call … available via text message request or chat or email or whatever …
3. But the desk will be a shared work space with the user.
4. We will be flexible – will be movable (perhaps) –
5. We will bring our service desk to you, if you prefer. If you're on the fourth floor there may be a space we can share to talk about the research.
6. The fewer barriers, the fewer the formal desks and barriers the better.

5. Group study
1. Huge emphasis on group study.
2. It is how we work as a civilization, a society – we work together in teams.

6. Social gathering places – we are.
1. We must be places that are w/out rules for rules sake.... We must be welcoming and comfortable with the type of furniture that makes much of the library space an effective, comfortable social gathering place / study lounge / library …

What really happened:

So we begin our conversation on library buildings discussing timelines of all things.

When do we build the library of the future ? Five years, ten years down the road? Things are changing. It may be wise to wait for the shared collection idea to be fleshed out more fully before building the bookless library :)

So yes, students want to be here (the library) but what makes a building a library?

Some libraries are losing space to other academic disciplines.

Conversation migrates to shifting low use materials to the NRLF and SRLF.

Part of the question, someone says, is what is the future trend.

Print material , leaving special collections aside, added content will be digital. That material that is in print will be in some shared environment.

A space for library collections at UCSF had a floor taken over by the School of Medicine – sort of a UL partnering issue with School of Medicine.

KG UCSD : Brings up the example of ucmerced – how they have a large building … that is largely empty of books but has many classrooms etc.

Classrooms are important elements in future library bldgs.

So why in the library ? How do we define what value we bring to this

Is it a library bldg simply because we are there , librarians, as facilitators.?

Strong impetus to move to

New bldg at UCSC – Classroom space … there will be a cafe (food) … A real cafe area that will not be inside the actualo library space.

The new bldg at UCSC has a couple of academic departments inside the bldg. But there is a separation from the collections space and faculty office space. There are of course access issues and the different access rules for faculty in bldg versus library visitors.

So we are migrating away from print toward remote storage facilities etc.

Sit in conversation …. How the budget has impacted our hours service etc.

There have been studies to try to determine higher use moments. And yet there is a problem with limiting library hours.

Think of merced where there are 75 laptops …

print on demand.


1 comment:

Lucia Orlando said...

Humans have always sought our places to connect with each other, socialize and share ideas. The library offers a place to do that, that isn't restricted (you don't need to buy anything, you don't need special permission to enter). How would we connect with students if we didn't have a physical presence? Would students understand what is available to them if there were only computers? How would this be distinguished from a computer lab?