Building Libraries for the 21st Century: The Shape of Information

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T.D. Webb
McFarland, Jan 1, 2004 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 286 pages
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Despite calls for electronic, virtual, digital libraries without walls, the walled variety are still being built, some of them massive. This book explores the reasons for this contradiction by examining several notable new library facilities around the world to see how modern expectations for libraries are being translated into concrete and steel. More and more libraries are looking at change not as a dreaded hazard but as an opportunity that can itself be seized to strengthen the library in the areas of mission, technologies, facilities, funding, and organizational structure. Thirteen libraries are discussed--by a librarian or administrator who worked on the project. Each author writes about the design and building concerns that were particularly relevant to that library: philosophy, political issues, or any other concerns that affected planning, building, and services in the new facility. Introductory and concluding chapters identify underlying values and themes, tying everything together. The unique combinations of issues, constraints, and opportunities show how libraries are planning to fit into the approaching era of virtual information delivery.

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Building libraries for the 21st century: the shape of information

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Why has there been such a surge in library construction in the 1990s, a time when many people forecast the demise of libraries with the onset of the digital world? To answer that question, editor Webb ... Read full review


Functions and Forms
FUNCTION Mission People and Places
The British Library
Constructing the New Shanghai Library
The San Antonio Public Library
The Construction of the New Peking University Library
FORM Arranging Services in Space
The Johnson Center Library at George Mason University
A Library for the 21st Century
Partner in Education
The Walsh Library Seton Hall University
SIGNIFICANCE Symbols and Emblems
The Bibliotheque Francois Mitterrand of the Bibliotheque
A National Library
Rational Space

Integrating Mass Communications
Library Services at California State University Monterey

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About the author (2004)

T.D. Webb is retired from a long career in academic libraries, during which he was a library dean at three universities, an assistant university library director, and associate university vice president for instructional technology services. The author of four other books on the profession, he has contributed many articles to such library publications as Library Journal, American Libraries, College & Research Libraries, IFLA Journal and Public Library Quarterly.

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