The Future of the Academic Library Print Collection: A Space for Engagement

From Jim O’Donnell, University Librarian, Arizona State University:

The Arizona State University Library is undertaking a major renovation of facilities and so also a major rethinking of how we handle our print collection.  We will ‘reduce the footprint’ considerably, while improving discovery services and our ability to deliver books to users.  But we also want to be intentional and creative in how we present and feature the smaller print collections in our numerous buildings.  What will it take to keep students and other users focused on the value and usefulness of print in an age of many distractions? With support of a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, we have begun planning our response.

This whitepaper represents our state of thinking today — as we look for other libraries to partner with us in thinking and planning.  I will introduce the whitepaper in a very short plenary at Charleston and on Thursday we will host a lively lunch to discuss these ideas and recruit librarians from other institutions interested in being part of the thinking and planning process.  We already have some remarkably innovative ideas — and we want more!

Please join us — or read the whitepaper and respond to me, jod@asu.edu, if you can’t.

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