November 26, 2015

It’s Time to Talk About Guns: Surface the facts, convene the conversation | Editorial


Like so many who have been stunned and saddened by seemingly constant instances of gun violence, I have been reflecting on what can be done to create a culture with less danger from firearms and less chaos in the discourse about them. It seems we have lost our moorings when it comes to talking about guns and creating laws and practices to manage them. In the meantime, people are getting hurt.

Comparing Boomer and Next-Gen Library Leaders: More Common Ground Than Expected | Leading From the Library

Steven Bell

Millennials and Gen-X librarians are moving into leadership positions. In what ways are they different from their Baby Boomer predecessors? OCLC did some research and the results are insightful.

How to Innovate | Future Proof

Scott Steinberg

Even for forward-thinking libraries and librarians, who operate in one of today’s most fast-changing and dynamic fields, concepts like innovation and change management may sometimes seem esoteric. If so, don’t be alarmed: Even the world’s most progressive business schools typically offer precious little training in these increasingly vital subjects. Happily for those operating on the frontlines of leadership or administration though, mastering these concepts—the art of staying ahead of the curve—doesn’t have to be a difficult process. In fact, all it often takes to get ahead and continuously go from strength to strength in today’s hyper-kinetic business world is to stay alert, stay adaptable, and stay amenable to new ideas and strategies. Flexibility is, in short, the essence of future-proofing.

Feedback: Letters to LJ, October 15, 2015 Issue

Comics are not clean-cut, the value of peer mentorship across borders, assessment for liaisons, and more letters to the October 15, 2015 issue of Library Journal.

Factors Beyond Our Control | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Layoffs at colleges and universities, once a fairly rare occurrence, are now becoming more commonplace. If you’ve yet to come across a story in your local news about an institution announcing layoffs and cuts, you probably will soon.

Making “Desk” a Four-Letter Word | Backtalk

Maxine Bleiweis

Is the idea of leaving the reference desk really so shocking? Maxine Bleiweis proposes an alternative that will be more satisfying to librarians and patrons.

Where are We Headed? An Unscientific Survey | Not Dead Yet

Word cloud for librarianship

I think we all have ideas about where library work is heading, and, like many others in our profession, I sometimes get asked questions about the field by people who are considering going to library school. After having just had one of those queries the other day, it occurred to me it was time for another of my wholly unscientific one-question surveys.

Linking the Needy to the Needed | Programs That Pop

It’s not unusual for public libraries to host fairs for patrons to find the things they want to know—most often revolving around authors and books. It is also not a rarity for libraries to conduct outreach to homeless and at-risk patrons. Yet Salt Lake City Public Library (­SLCPL) has taken the uncommon step of combining the two. On November 18, 2014, an estimated 400 homeless or at-risk individuals attended the first Project Uplift, a social services information and resource fair coordinated by SLCPL, Salt Lake City government, and Volunteers of America—Utah (VOA).

By the People: The library future resides in users’ perception | Blatant Berry

John Berry III

The history of the public library in America has just been rewritten, and the result provides crucial new tools to help guarantee its future. This new history comes from Wayne A. Wiegand’s new book, Part of Our Lives: A People’s History of the American Public Library (Oxford Univ., Oct. 2015).

Feedback: Letters to LJ, October 1, 2015 Issue

A librarian for LC, apathy a bigger threat, community needs in Berkeley, and more letters to the October 1, 2015 issue of Library Journal.