Video from Neutinamu, South Korea

Young-Sook “Soy” Park and the amazing folks at the Neutinamu library made a few videos of my visit to the library, and the conversation we had about community-based libraries.

An overview of the trip – short and sweet
My talk and conversation on new librarianship and Expect More

Master of None

“Master of None.” Wild Wisconsin Winter Web Conference. via VIdeo

Abstract: Librarians are being increasingly pulled in many directions. What once was a profession focused on collections and institutions that served the public, has become a community centered space that acts as makerspace, reading refuge, business center, and more. Recognition that libraries are not neutral and should serve an increasingly diverse community is being met with increasingly visible book banning efforts and complex issues of perspectives on diversity are flattened to being “woke.” This session will provide strategies and examples for offering focused services that reflect the complex community served.

Video:

Slides:

Less; Better, a Workbook, and Looking for Feedback

I don’t know what you did over your winter break (for those that got one), but I wrote a new workbook and now I’m looking for a few brave souls to read it and give me feedback.

Less;Better Workbook draft cover. An out of focus hand and background holds a camera lens that provides clarity of a city street.

First, the ask, then the workbook summary: I’m looking for 5 folks to read the current draft and give me feedback on the text. NOT copyediting, but thoughts on the overall concept, does the text make sense, do the worksheets flow, do you like the cover, what did I miss, etc.

So what is Less; Better, and why a workbook? The short answer is that it seeks to fill a gap in thinking about community-based/new librarianship – finding focus. In my other books like Expect More and Atlas of New Librarianship a library is defined as the result of a librarian facilitate community learning. But this is so broad it raises the question – how can librarians do it all? Less; Better is about finding the balance.

A workbook because it includes exercises, slide decks, and hand outs to facilitate workshops and conversations on the topic. It is meant to be lightweight, useful, and practical. I first did a presentation on Less; Better last year at the New Jersey Library Association conference, and have since gotten regular requests to speak on the topic.

Sample worksheet.

My plan is to self-publish this, just as I did with Expect More so I can keep it inexpensive, get it out quick, and be able to facilitate its use without complicated publisher negotiations.

So, if you are interested, let me know in the comments or email me at [email protected]

A special thanks to Jennifer R. Nelson, NJ State Librarian for her considered feedback.

Introducing Bowden Fellows

As the new year starts, so does a new program – Bowden Fellows. These are folks from practice and academia working closely with the Bowden Professor to push forward an agenda of improving libraries and library science education.

Kimberly Silk, Principal Consultant for Brightsail Research and Sessional Lecturer at the University of Toronto. Kim works with GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums) sector organizations to help them adopt evaluation practices, develop metrics, and use data analysis to measure progress toward strategic goals, improve operations and demonstrate outcomes. Kim’s formal education includes a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in English Literature from the University of Waterloo and a Master of Library Science from the University of Toronto. In 2020 she completed a Graduate Certificate in Evaluation from the School of Public Administration at the University of Victoria.

This spring Kim will be working with the Texas State Library and Archives around the use of data for assessment and ongoing services, and teaching a course in library evaluation for the University of Texas at Austin’s iSchool.

Susan Gregurek, Library Director Jarrell Community Library and Resource Center. Susan is the Library Director for Jarrell Community Library and Resource Center in Jarrell, Texas. The library is a new small rural non-profit library in a community experiencing exponential growth. Her past experiences as a retired K-8 educator, staff development trainer, Board of Director of an educational non-profit, and worked for a major textbook company has helped to prepare her for her new challenges expanding library resources, programs and activities for the diverse community of Jarrell.

This spring Susan will be working with students in building and managing the Jarrell Community Library.

OF the People

“OF the People.” National Assembly Busan Library. Busan, Korea.

Abstract: National and parliamentary libraries are searching for a new mission. In this presentation I argue for a public facing mission reinforcing the infrastructure of democracy through local public libraries.

Slides: