Oxford looks at the future of libraries

20 July 2009

campaign_libs_logoSHADOW_smallThe Oxford Libraries have been at the heart of the debate exploring ‘The Libraries of the Future’ led by JISC.

The year long campaign which has taken place both online and through a series of events is marked this month by the release of a specially-commissioned documentary which features Sarah Thomas, Bodley’s Librarian and Director of Oxford University Library Services (OULS) alongside experts from JISC and the London School of Economics, as well as students and academics, who discuss what the library of the future will look like.

Sarah Thomas, Bodley’s Librarian and Director, OULS said: ‘These issues are of critical importance not just to libraries. It’s not just about our future; it’s really about the future of our society because libraries have traditionally had the role of providing free and democratic access to knowledge.’

Sarah Porter, Head of Innovation at JISC, explains: ‘To move from the present library to what is required in the future will be an immense challenge. JISC will use the outcomes from the debate to guide institutions in how to plan their futures.’ 

The documentary can be viewed on the Libraries of the Future website: www.jisc.ac.uk/librariesofthefuture Alternatively, viewers can subscribe to updates from JISC's dedicated YouTube Channel.

The Libraries of the Future campaign, led by JISC, has stimulated debate among librarians, information professionals and academics on the issues surrounding technology's impact on the emerging role of the academic library in the 21st century with a series of events, printed resources and podcast interviews.

JISC inspires UK colleges and universities in the innovative use of digital technologies, helping to maintain the UK’s position as a global leader in education.

Previous campaign events organized by OULS in partnership with JISC include a public debate on the same subject held in Oxford at the beginning of April. Dr Sarah Thomas was among six notable speakers. The videos of the event presentations can be viewed here.

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