From collections to connections: building a revised platform for library and information science
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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OriginalversjonAudunson, R.A. & Aabø, S. (2013). From collections to connections: building a revised platform for library and information science. Information research, 18(3) http://www.informationr.net/ir/18-3/colis/paperC29.html
Introduction. The paper discusses the often-repeated assertion that digitization makes libraries and librarians redundant by giving everyone access to the information they need without having to rely upon librarians as information middlemen. Method. Relevant articles both from research literature and from discussions in the public sphere preoccupied with the relationship between digitization and librarianship are summarised and discussed. Analysis. The essence of librarianship is discussed and we propose the following generic definition: librarians are professionals who, on the basis of organized collections of documents, initiate and stimulate social processes related to knowledge sharing, knowledge creation, learning and cultural experiences. The processes represent the mission, the collections the tool. Based on this definition the relevancy of librarianship in a digital world is discussed. Results. We suggest that, based on the generic understanding of librarianship, librarians will still be needed. The social processes implied in the discussion presupposes places in which those processes may unfold and these places might be called libraries. Conclusion.Librarians and libraries are not redundant, but they will have to change in order to stay relevant. One important change is to focus upon the mission instead of the tool.