The Responsive Library

Credit Cut in Imperial Telecommunication by Stéfan, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License  by  Stéfan 

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how our library is serving (or possibly not serving) our community. Over the course of the last year and a half, I have learned enough about my library and my community to know that there’s a lot I don’t know. I’m making plans to fill in those gaps. At a college that places emphasis on teaching above research among faculty members, I’m wondering how exactly the library is or is not supporting the faculty’s teaching responsibilities. I’ve come across an article that I just love, partially because it opened a mental door for me, and partially because the tone of the article is just delightful. In response to the overwhelming nature of gathering information at a large institution Linda Rambler (1982) says:

The systematic analysis is left undone. Consequently, library resources are often deployed using a mixture of formulas seasoned with intuition and a dash of political savvy. A responsive library sometimes becomes an added benefit rather than the primary goal.

A responsive library. I love that idea. That’s an idea I can run with.

Rambler, L. K. (1982). Syllabus Study: Key to a Responsive Academic Library. Journal of Academic Librarianship, 8(3), 155.

One thought on “The Responsive Library

  1. varellano says:

    I love how the idea of a responsive library has been around since 1982 (and I’d venture to guess even well before that) yet we still often find ourselves being very reactionary practitioners and entities. I think the key difference is that being a responsive library is one where librarians and library staff are very well tuned in to campus culture and have established collaborative relationships that matter. I know it’s an uphill battle, but one we’re not likely to stop!

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