Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

Mastering Digital Librarianship: Strategy, Networking and Discovery in Academic Libraries

Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

Mastering Digital Librarianship: Strategy, Networking and Discovery in Academic Libraries

Article excerpt

Mastering Digital Librarianship: Strategy, Networking and Discovery in Academic Libraries. Ed. by Alison Mackenzie and Lindsey Martin. London: Facet, 2014. 183 p. Paper $99.95 (ISBN: 978-1-85604-943-6).

This handbook of topics in digital librarianship sets the bar rather high for itself. The title makes confident pledges to the reader, and the nine collected articles must stretch to fulfill these promises. The editors have arranged the almost entirely UK-based contributions into three themed sets: rethinking marketing and communication, rethinking support for academic practice, and rethinking resource delivery. The articles are largely descriptive of practice rather than prescriptive of mastery, which is a count against the work as a whole.

In the editors' favor, digital librarianship is a broad topic, and the range of articles treats a variety of aspects. The themes they have assembled should, in theory, support libraries sympathetic to the title, and the introduction correctly characterizes the collection as "an honest appraisal by ... librarians of their professional practices at a point in their transition" (xvi). Some articles are betrayed by the speed of change in the field; the social media outlets in a treatise on digital marketing are already slightly dated. …

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