An article has just been published in the newest issue of the Journal of Documentation that attempts to answer the question “What is library 2.0?” from the perspective of library professionals. (For those without access to the journal you can check out a related presentation here.)
Researchers from Åbo Akademi University in Finland used a technique that identifies trends based on the co-occurrence of words, as library professionals attempted to explain what ‘library 2.0’ means to them.
The researchers were able to map out seven core concepts or “building blocks” that they believe define library 2.0 from a professional perspective. These seven identified components of library 2.0 are represented in the image below:
The Building Blocks of Library 2.0 [image taken from http://library2pointoh.fi/]
The researchers could then use these core building blocks to provide their own empirically-based definition of library 2.0:
“Library 2.0 is a change in interaction between users and libraries in a new culture of participation catalysed by social web technologies.”
As you can see, this definition coincides with many previous ideas about library 2.0 and the notion that it is about more than just the technology – rather it is about what the technology is allowing us to do. Some would even say that technology is not essential to a definition of library 2.0 at all. What do you think?
Of course this would also mean that ‘librarian 2.0’ will be about more than just the technological skills as well. Is technology necessary to define your idea of librarian 2.0? Opinions are very welcome on our “Librarian 2.0?” page as always, so if you haven’t yet visited you might like to do so!
You can find out more about the work of the Finnish researchers above by checking out their blog (in English): Library 2.0: A new participatory context.
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Some upcoming presentations have now been added to the blog (see the Resources page for a complete list of presentations):
- Partridge, H. (2009) Becoming librarian 2.0. Paper to be presented at the CAVAL People in the Information Profession Conference, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia, 15-16 October 2009.
- Partridge, H. (2009) Librarian 2.0: The most adaptable to change!? Australian Law Librarians’ Association Evolution Conference 2009, Darwin, Australia, 2-4 September 2009.
- Partridge, H. (2009) May we work in interesting times: Librarian 2.0 and beyond. CAVAL Reference Interest Group, Information Literacy in Interesting Times Seminar, Melbourne, 25 November 2009.
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Recently EDUCAUSE Australasia 2009 took place from 3-6 May in Perth, Western Australia. One of the presenters there was Kathryn Greenhill, a librarian working at Murdoch University Library who also maintains her own blog. She presented a paper titled “Why Learning about Emerging Technologies is Part of Every Librarian’s Job”, which you can read by clicking on the link. You can view the accompanying slideshow for the presentation at Kathryn’s blog, or by clicking to play the embedded version below:
Slideshow by Kathryn Greenhill: “Why Learning about New Technologies is Part of Every Librarian’s Job” Source
Kathryn’s paper talks about workplace learning programmes for staff learning about web 2.0 technologies, as well as techniques for finding the time to learn about these technologies. A few of the comments on our “Librarian 2.0?” page lately have been related to the fact that it is hard for some LIS professionals to find time within their job to focus on the issue of web/library 2.0. Twenty-one reasons are listed in the paper as to why it is important for librarians to learn about new technologies, including as a way of increasing our skills. Kathryn was also awarded a Jean Arnot Memorial Fellowship for the paper.
You might find it interesting to have a look at the paper and the presentation, and to think about the extent to which you see learning about web 2.0 technologies as forming part of your own job as an LIS professional. As always comments can be directed to the discussion on our “Librarian 2.0?” page.
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