Common Libraries works with enterprising organisations to prototype the library of the future – today. We believe there is an urgent and pressing need to evolve libraries so that they may serve as bastions of a 21st century knowledge commons – functioning as trusted and impartial platforms for the production, exchange and consumption of knowledge […]
The title to this post is a quote from Corinne Hill, Director of Chattanooga Public Library that I just love. It's the public library version of Google's 'fail fast, fail often' mantra and it ironically reflects the reality of public library funding constraints, while also describing the creative, entrepreneurial energy her library embodies. Her inspirational approach to library innovation is something we can all learn from. We need to get away from fear of failure and move towards embracing new ideas, even if they don’t turn out to be quite the right ideas for us in the long run.
American businessman and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie’s public library legacy was built on a boyhood dream: to acquire knowledge. Carnegie believed in “the meritocratic nature of America,” that anyone “with the right inclination and desire could educate himself” and therefore succeed, and that libraries should contribute directly to that. So what are libraries doing lending out toys and holding game nights? Aren’t American...
This is an interesting article with lots of useful links.
The Lexicon is costing €36.6m to build. In an interesting move, the 6,520m2 building – which will be the central library for the county of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown – will be called the Dlr Lexicon, which reflects the fact that it offers more than a library.
It’s also intended to be a cultural centre, with a café (the tenant is yet to be decided on), a gallery, a small auditorium space, crafts spaces, a local history library, 100 parking spaces and a children’s library.
It’s hoped that this mix of facilities will attract more than 50,000 people to Dun Laoghaire every year.
Rather than being detached from the rest of the town, it is supposed to draw people into the centre of Dun Laoghaire, offering them a space to explore and enjoy before making their way into the town.
Public libraries have to prove they are delivering value to their customers to justify the money spent on them. There is nothing different about this library to any other library in the world. Staff & management will need to be on their game.
The library is one of the few institutions that has the potential to organize communities to access and produce information responsibly and safely.
A useful quote from the article: "The library is one of the few institutions that has the potential to organize communities to access and produce information responsibly and safely. Libraries connect people with resources, facilitate inquiry and popular education, and are accessible and highly trusted. For the growing movement fighting for an alternative to a culture of surveillance, they are an excellent place to start."
ALIA has set out to investigate the big questions about the future of libraries: How will libraries remain relevant for users? What changes will institutions and individuals in the sector experience? Will ‘library and information professional’ continue to be a necessary and desirable occupation?
This report was recently released by ALIA (Australian Library & Information Association).
Librarians in Massachusetts are working to give their patrons a chance to opt-out of pervasive surveillance. Partnering with the ACLU of Massachusetts, area librarians have been teaching and taking workshops on how freedom of speech and the right to privacy are compromised by the surveillance of online and digital communications -- and what new privacy-protecting services they can offer patrons to shield them from unwanted spying of their library activity.
This is very cool. This should be a trend worldwide...
Based on the winners of the International Interior Design Association’s (IIDA) Library Interior Design Awards, the answer seems to be incredible, boundary pushing design.
“With the function of library spaces continually being reshaped and retooled to align with shifting end-user needs and advancing technologies, design in library interiors must evolve quickly and creatively,” said IIDA Executive VP and CEO Cheryl S. Durst.
Facing declining visitors and uncertainty about what to do about it, library administrators in the new town of Almere in the Netherlands did something extraordinary. They redesigned their libraries based on the changing needs and desires of library users and, in 2010, opened the Nieuwe Bibliotheek (New Library), a thriving community hub that looks more like a bookstore than a library.
A radical redesign has helped this Dutch library turn its declining patronage numbers around.
"USC Online has created an infographic called, “The Five Laws of Library Science,” which explores five principles which can help guide the practices of librarians.
According to the graphic, almost 2.5 million public library books were circulated between more than 1.5 million people in 2011. The graphic also points out that there is more than 120,000 libraries in the U.S."
Public libraries are busier and more popular with patrons than ever. Today’s library is a place for social interaction as well as quiet reading. It is a community cultural center, not simply a repository for books. It is a welcoming building with a design focus on transparency, not a series of isolated spaces. These changing operations directly affect the layout and organization of library buildings. So, libraries today must be designed to accommodate more simplified administrative operations and new staff functions.