Deichman Bjørvika – klarer biblioteket å balansere utleie og bibliotekdrift?
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The Deichman Library was founded in 1785 and is Norway’s oldest and largest public library. The new main library, Deichman Bjørvika, opened in June 2020. In this Master degree thesis, we have chosen to examine the situation involving an income requirement which Deichman received in connection with the construction of Deichman Bjørvika. The income to be met, and specified as a requirement, is NOK 12.5 million in 2021, and the City Council expects that the income will come mainly from rentals of ground space in the Deichman Bjørvika facilities. So when Deichman Bjørvika opened, its administration had to face a new challenge. It was also thought that this task would be resolved by existing employees, allocated from several different sections in their workplace in Bjørvika. In our thesis, we have chosen to examine if the rental income requirements affect the library and its employees. We have interviewed 10 employees in various positions, asking them to shed light on this issue. Based on the interviews, our conclusion shows results which we find interesting and relevant for the new situation Deichman Bjørvika is in. Through the interviews, we have discovered that the rental income requirements affect the library in several ways - both positive and negative. Having to rent out areas of the library means that the library will be reaching out to a wider variety of the public, and its employees will have an opportunity to learn from a range of different professionals who are brought into the library. However, at the same time, the need to rent out space may result in the library having to sacrifice some of its own activities. The employees also found it difficult to prioritize between a paying customer and a non-paying patron. Deichman Bjørvika has, in very a short time, managed to become a popular attraction with Oslo's residents and although some employees indicated they were critical about the rental activities, we have identified few such reactions from patrons. The interviews we carried out have also shown that employees were concerned that the income from the rentals would not be enough to justify or compensate for all the extra work. Our findings also indicate that library patrons are well able to use the library despite the fact that some of the library areas have to be closed from time to time, for press conferences or various other events.