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Imagine Your Library's Future. Chandos Information Professional Series

  • ID: 2719711
  • Book
  • September 2010
  • 240 Pages
  • Elsevier Science and Technology
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In this information age it is widely recognised that, in order to maintain relevance and to gain a competitive edge, libraries and other organisations in the business of information must continuously assess their roles, collections, services and perhaps most importantly, their business practices. Scenarios are a way of predicting and describing a future three to five years away while strongly engaging one's community in choosing the future which is preferable. The horizon in which assessments about future roles change is growing shorter and shorter. While it is almost clichéd to state that change is the only constant, differing scenarios of what libraries might be allow all of us to contemplate futures we might otherwise not allow. Drawing on extensive experience in libraries in different parts of the globe, the authors provide a rich analysis of planning, managing and implementing change in information organisations through scenario planning. Through extensive practical applications, both actual and theoretical, the authors provide a strong background understanding and direct the reader through a planning process that is both readily applicable and innovative for all information organisations, irrespective of their size or client base.

- Extensive exploration of what it means to 'shape our futures' rather than having our future shaped for us- Valuable techniques for understanding futures and creating different scenarios- Practical applications are illustrated through examples and real life experience

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List of figures, table and case studies

About the authors

Chapter 1: What are scenarios?

The future is not linear

What is the value of scenarios?

The future impacting on libraries

What is the future and does science fiction predict the future?


An initial view of the Internet

Change of attitudes toward the future

Development of scenarios as a discipline

Chapter 2: The complexities of our informational environment

This chapter

What is the environment?

Libraries and their environments

Disruptive technologies

Broad disruptive technological impact on libraries

Issues in the wider environment

Open source

Open source implications

Digital content

Digital content implications

The author-publisher-library relationship

Content balance

The future of work

Implications for the future of work

Emerging trends

Chapter 3: The future and the past: models are changing

This chapter

The mirror as a powerful tool

Library models in transition

Consortia in our corporate lives

Changing roles of and pressures on consortia

What are we doing, or what is our business model?

Future business models

Chapter 4: Understanding choices

This chapter

What are choices?

Beginning to construct scenarios through choices

Keeping options open

Chapter 5: Toward a new way of thinking

This chapter

How to organise for decisions

Is it all straightforward?

Confronting sameness

Research as a group

Chapter 6: Designing your process

This chapter

Not every process is the same

Scenario construction beginnings

The suggested process

Chapter 7: Scenarios and implementation

This chapter

Preferred Library Scenario

Keeping the scenario alive

Mid-term review

The staff in the implementation of the Preferred Scenario

Chapter 8: Choice, chance and (less than) certainty

This chapter

Chance and randomness

Adoption of risk

Issue 1: abundance of data

Issue 2: search engine capability

Issue 3: avoid group thinking

Issue 4: learn to take risks

Issue 5: continue to build a trust metric for the library

Issue 6: so what is your future?


Chapter 9: Case studies

Case study 1: A major Hong Kong university library

Case study 2: A major Australian university library

Case study 3: CAVAL Ltd, Melbourne, Australia

Case study 4: SOLINET scenarios

Case study 5: Public library

Case study 6: The possible world of library consortia

Chapter 10: Implementation and the impact of change

This chapter

Change, demolition and reconstruction

The human side of change

Getting involved and involvement

Following through and embedding the change

Change and scenario planning

Further reading


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O'Connor, Steve
Steve O'Connor is a University Librarian in Hong Kong. He has also been the CEO of a Library consortium and worked as a consultant and trainer extensively in different parts of the world, including the United States and the United Kingdom. He has written and talked extensively on issues relating to libraries, librarians and how they can not only survive but should thrive and position themselves for the benefit of their communities. He is currently working at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He is also the Editor of Library Management and created Library Management China (in Chinese).
Sidorko, Peter
Peter Sidorko is the Deputy University Librarian at the University of Hong Kong. He has extensive senior management experience in academic libraries in Australia and Hong Kong. In addition to initiating, directing and managing change, from incremental to transformational, in the libraries in which he has worked, Peter has also provided consultancies on organisational change for other libraries. He has written extensively, and speaks regularly, on management issues in libraries with particular emphasis on organisational change. Peter also lectures on topics such as organisational change, contemporary library management, information in organisations and information policy in the information science courses taught at the University of Hong Kong.
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