Award Report-Transformational Change in Health Sciences Libraries: Space, Collections, Roles
The conference “Transformational Change in Health Sciences Libraries: Space, Collections, Roles” took place April 2, 2009 at the Penn State Hershey Conference Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Seventy attendees from eight states (Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC) participated in the successful conference.
Pat Thibodeau presented the keynote address focusing on changes in health sciences libraries in general, changes at Duke Medical Center Library, and implications for librarian roles and the need to transform skill sets: “Transformational Change in Health Sciences Libraries: Inventing our Future.”
Two panel discussions with Question and Answer format addressed the conference themes. Four panelists, two hospital librarians and two academic librarians, responded to questions. The moderator, Mike Heyd, directed the panel discussion. The themes discussed were:
- Models or best practices in libraries’ reduction of print collection
- Models and best practices in libraries’ reduction of space and/or
re-purposing of existing space
- Emerging roles and identities of librarians in the changing physical environment
- Models or best practices of adjusting traditional library roles
Two breakout sessions, each following the panel discussions, were held. Each table was given time at the end of the breakout session to wrap up and share insights from the discussions.
The closing presentation was given by architect Julie Polletta, who has experience renovating and repurposing library space. Ms. Polletta addressed the practical aspects of repurposing library space for alternative uses and the implications of the competing agendas of various stakeholders on outcome.
A Website with information from the conference will be hosted by the NN/LM MAR. The site will contain photographs, PowerPoint slides, podcasts and streaming video of the keynote address and closing presentation. Major discussion points that emerged from the break-out sessions will be identified. A narrative will describe outcomes.
Janet Zimmerman, Medical Library Director, Beaumont Hospitals, Michigan, praised the relevance of the conference, “I preferred coming to this conference rather than attending the Medical Library Association Annual Meeting 2009 because of the timeliness of the topic: Library Space and its Impact.”
Valerie Lynn, George T. Harrell Health Schiences library. Hershey, PA