Living Digital: The Future of Information and the Role of the Library Thursday, January 14, 2010 (8:30am-4:30pm) Boston, Massachusetts
Presentation Titles and Abstracts
The 21st century's globalized economy is a knowledge economy, powered by technologies that many of our kids take for granted but which most of our parents never imagined. Generational differences have added a new dimension to the "digital divide" and new challenges in attracting and preparing talent to step into information-related professions. An education well-grounded in STEM - a multidisciplinary approach to
science, technology, engineering and mathematics - creates informed and literate citizens, let alone technically competent problem-solvers and innovators in the workforce. Yet the pipeline is weak. This talk will describe a growing movement among diverse stakeholders to address this critical workforce issue through a collaborative, systemic focus on STEM education. Recruitment approaches for addressing generational differences in job and career expectations will be shared. An underlying concept of "glocalization" will be discussed as fundamental to transformations necessary to meet the challenges of the third millennium.
As content goes digital, the local infrastructure developed and optimized over a century to store and provide access to books and journals becomes less valuable. Putting aside preservation, when an article becomes available electronically, one might argue that the physical infrastructure to store the print version of that article has no value at all. Perhaps that is less true today for books, because of the current limitation of reading long-form content digitally, but that too is changing rapidly and is nearing a tipping point. If one imagines a future when nearly all content is in digital form, the role of the library shifts from being one primarily managing physical infrastructure and inventory efficiently and effectively, and one oriented toward providing services. The speaker will explore a number of examples of companies that have experienced this kind of shift and how they have responded. He will also share some of the initial findings of a recent faculty survey exploring changing attitudes about the library in this digital age.
Many young people -- especially those in schools, colleges, and universities -- relate to information, one another, and institutions very differently than their parents and grandparents. This session will focus on topics such as changing norms in access to knowledge, copyright, and the impact of the proposed Google Books Search Settlement. This talk will consider the potentially transformative implications of these changes for all libraries, schools, and the publishing industry
Digital library activities continue to mature. The best of breed are moving from being insular and narrowly local efforts that have thrown up walls to cooperation to being broadly cooperative efforts that take advantage of deeply shared resources, modularity, and openness. Part of that maturation process is moving from seeing digital resource issues as “common” problems to being “shared” problems. The presentation will highlight University of Michigan digital library efforts (and particularly HathiTrust) to discuss this move to shared efforts, as well as the way this trend makes it possible for an institution to build global systems and services that are cognizant of local community needs. Working in a shared space and acting globally ensures a more efficient use of scarce resources and better supports our need to serve local needs.
Collection development for an all digital library shouldn't just mimic the same processes and procedures we've used in the past to develop our print resources. The value and even relevance of a local "in-house" collection should be questioned. It's also important to look beyond text and consider elevating the importance of providing access to datasets and other non-text resources that best support our school curriculum and/or community interests. In short, as librarians we need to think about how our collection development policies and efforts impact our inevitable shift from the role of gatekeeper to facilitator in an all-digital future.
Gaming at the library isn't new, but the impact it can now have on patrons, staff, and the community is. Whether it's gaming services that enhance social interactions, encourage intergenerational learning, create opportunities for civic engagement, incorporate strategies into instructional learning, or permeate the library with the "gamer ethos" for success-driven failure, gaming offers incredibly rich and varied possibilities for libraries. Learn how your library can "level up" with gamers and harness the benefits of gaming for everyone.
New technology has brought with it new tools to enrich and expand the core library services of learning, discovery and research. Reaching out to "digital natives" through an information commons is a useful approach to focusing library services on this generation of learners, explorers, - and educators. The challenge for libraries is to provide an environment in which digital natives, regardless of their individual skills and experience, can gain access to the resources and services that that will help them become full, ethical, informed participants in the online communities in which they live.
In March of 2009, the 100-year-old Christian Science Monitor shifted to a Web-first strategy, discontinuing its daily print newspaper and putting the bulk of its journalistic resources against its website, CSMonitor.com. (The Monitor also launched a print weekly magazine, an email Daily News Update, and other platforms.) Now that reporters, editors, photographers, and graphics artists are working directly on the Web, they are in a constant feedback loop with their audience and are learning how to pursue an acquisition-retention-conversion strategy using best practices with search engine optimization and hyperlinking to deeper content. Whether the Monitor is a model for other news organizations or not as a business, this Web-first type of journalism is a profound cultural shift that most of the world of journalism will sooner or later make. John Yemma, editor of the Monitor, will detail the early lessons from this real-time laboratory for Web-first news located in Boston 's Back Bay.