The Evolution of Library and Museum Partnerships: Historical Antecedents, Contemporary Manifestations, and Future Directions

The Evolution of Library and Museum Partnerships: Historical Antecedents, Contemporary Manifestations, and Future Directions

The Evolution of Library and Museum Partnerships: Historical Antecedents, Contemporary Manifestations, and Future Directions

The Evolution of Library and Museum Partnerships: Historical Antecedents, Contemporary Manifestations, and Future Directions

Synopsis

"Libraries, museums, and patterns of patron use have changed drastically in past decades as digitization projects, "infotainment," and the Internet redefine the library's and the museum's roles in the community. These authors examine the unique social roles of libraries and museums and explore the implications for the future of these institutions. After reviewing historical precedents - including library-museum partnerships funded in recent years through IMLS grants - they forge an exciting vision of a new library-museum hybrid, in which the juxtaposition of library collections and museum artifacts creates authentic, interactive experiences for community members, and establishes a meaningful and sustainable role for libraries. Commercialization, "edutainment," and the library as a learning community are just some of the fascinating topics addressed as the authors explore the future's terrain, and suggest how libraries might situate themselves upon that terrain." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

This book is about the nature of museum-library partnerships and collaborative efforts at the beginning of the twenty-first century and about what the librarymuseum relationship could be in the future. The background to this topic lies in the increasing number of joint-use libraries in North America, Sweden, Australia, and New Zealand. As defined by Alan Bundy, joint-use libraries are facilities in which “two or more distinct library services providers, usually a school [library] and a public library, serve their client groups in the same building, based on an agreement that specifies the relationship between the providers.” Kathleen Imhoff speaks of “two or more libraries of different types coming together to provide services in a single building operating cooperatively to provide resources, such as curriculum support, bibliographic instruction, and information literacy to the general public and/or students, faculty, and administrators.” While joint-use agreements between public and school libraries are the most common, academic and public libraries also have established joint-use partnerships. If joint-use facilities were, at the beginning, typically found in rural areas that had difficulty in financially sustaining separate public and school libraries, they are increasingly appearing in urban areas where municipal governments and educational entities at all levels are facing the type of financial constraints that make resource sharing in one building an attractive option. Such joint efforts have not been without controversy, as demonstrated by Natalie Reif Ziarnik in her overview of the tensions between school and public librarians in the United States in the twentieth century and by Beverly Goldberg in her account about opposition to a university-public joint-use library. Nonetheless, examples of innovative joint-use facilities, both rural and urban, abound: Loup County, Nebraska; Washoe County, Nevada; Broward Community College . . .

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