The Long Now Foundation’s Manual for Civilization seems like a project librarians can get interested in. The project seeks to crowdsource a collection of 3,500 books deemed important for sustaining or rebuilding civilization - everything from the cultural canon to technical works to science fiction to history to guides to long-term thinking.
The Foundation has collected nearly 1,000 titles through submissions from over 6,000 members and experts, including Brian Eno, Stewart Brand, Kevin Kelly, Maria Popova and Neal Stephenson. You can learn more about some of the selections by checking out the Long Now Foundation’s blog. The Manual for Civilization will be housed at The Interval, the Long Now Foundation’s bar, café, and event space in San Francisco focused on long-term thinking.
A Manual for the Future of Librarianship
We’re crediting the Manual for Civilization as inspiration for an experiment from the Center for the Future of Libraries.
Can we crowdsource a Manual for the Future of Librarianship?
Beyond what we learned in library school – a shared base of knowledge for librarianship – what are the other books, articles, reports, essays, videos, recordings, etc., that will help inform the future of our profession? Think of things you have read, seen or heard that inform your practice and that you think others would benefit from. Think inside and outside the library literature. Think bestsellers, obscure finds, and things that hurt your brain. These don’t have to be exclusively futuristic – we’ll also need timeless advice from all disciplines and perspectives.
We have set up a submission form to gather suggestions. We will publish submissions to the site for others to review and consider. Once we have a significant pool of suggestions, we may move to a voting process to help identify some of the best and most essential contributions to this Manual for the Future of Librarianship.
This is an experiment, so we are open to feedback, suggestions, and additional thoughts.