White, Wendy and Middleton, Chris
Driving cultural change: challenges and opportunities facing librarians.
In, 38th LIBER Conference Innovation through Collaboration, Toulouse, France,
30 Jun - 03 Jul 2009.
In support of Master Class 2: “Advocacy – making the case for the Library in the University”, this session explores the potential for a cultural shift in the management of the research process within University Libraries, and discusses the impact that librarians can have on maximising the efficiency of this process. The presenters apply the Cultural Web Paradigm ( Johnson, G., Scholes, K., Whittington, R. Exploring corporate strategy, 7th ed. Harlow: FT/Prentice Hall, 2006. p. 201.) to the research process commonly observed within Universities. The research process is analysed using the headings Stories; Symbols; Power; Control systems; Organisational structure; and Routines and rituals. The desired cultural shift is defined for each heading and the contribution of the library to this development is outlined.
This investigation leads to a clear indication of the role of the librarian throughout the workflow, namely: identifying research partners; providing pathways to information; encouraging collaborative working; and facilitating dissemination. It is not widely appreciated that the librarian can offer this support throughout the entire project lifecycle, and advocacy is required to encourage use of these skills. Some methods are discussed including innovations that libraries themselves can adopt in order to reinforce the message.
The presentation concludes with an analysis of how library staff develop the support skills needed as their careers develop.
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