Libraries and research

In How to work better, Information industry on April 25, 2009 by Hanna Tagged:

I pretty much work in a research environment and am lucky to benefit from the historical precedent set by our team being embedded in the team we support.  I know from experience that this isn’t always the case especially in terms of supporting anyone who isn’t an undergraduate in higher education. I’m kicking myself that I missed this JISC event that looked at where libraries are going. As a result I came across a brilliant blog from Peter Murray-Rust who is a scientist at Cambridge University trying to enable routine chemical data to be captured and shared, battling technological and copyright issues. His views on librarians are something worth listening to. Here is an extract from the blog on what he spoke about at the event:

  • talking to scientific colleagues.. The main conclusion was that the formal “library” was largely unseen/irrelevant and at best a service department
  • raising the subject on my blog and following Twitter and FriendFeed. Feedback was slow until I tweaked the outrage knob slightly and was then mainly from tech-aware librarians. The main thrust was that they were doing a good diverse job which wasn’t appreciated by me or scientists in general.
  • I have been described by Brian Kelly as a Critical Friend” to libraries (and I accept the compliment).
  • Conclusion: the librarian of the future will not come from the librarian of the present. They will be real revolutionaries.

I like the notion of a critical friend which I am of CILIP, it’s kind of embarrassing how slow it is on the uptake. They’re having a debate at web 2.0 applications next week whilst we, in PMR’s words, just do it.


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