The Bookends Scenerios

A few months back, I noted that the State Library of New South Wales was working with the folks at NowAndNext to develop a set of future scenarios to help guide conversation and strategic planning among public libraries.

Well today, the full 64 page report has been released and while I haven't been able to digest the information contained in all four scenarios completely, my quick scanning tells me that's there lots of good food for thought here.

Bookends Scenarios: Alternative Futures for the Public Library Network of NSW in 2030 (pdf)

image: pg 63


cwosborn said...

This is the report that has had my mind churning for day

Print is less than %9 of that pie and I don't see that every increasing again (e-books might slow the decline down).

I've heard some say that the App is the new media delivery platform (think NASA's iPhone App, etc.). I've been wondering if convergence with another traditional print platform provider (newspapers) could led to some interesting results. Both organizations gather and curator information and have a local and world scope.

I look forward to digging into this report for insights. Thanks for sharing it! Wes

John Proffitt said...

A note for cwosborn... The report you mention also notes that while print occupies 9% of our average daily information consumption today, our consumption of text is up markedly in the last 50 years. We're also consuming 350% more information than 30 years ago.

I'd say print is definitely on a major decline, and the decline is accelerating. But textual consumption overall is up and is likely to stay up, since it's the easiest info to produce and is the most durable from a format/content perspective.

Libraries, though, will have to change their thinking from print to information and curation. That's in progress, but it probably needs to speed up.

Batarang said...

I agree, John, although I think libraries will do less curating than we do now; I don't think curating is dynamic enough. As its been said before here and many other places, we'll be the information tour guides leading folks to the data they need--sometimes having to create it ourselves. As I'm looking at the current landscape, libraries, more than ever, need to band together to make sure the massive amounts of information/media stays available to everyone even when its behind paywalls. Libraries need to continue to push vendors to make their sites easier to use and more comprehensive. More choices and avenues for info tend to confuse non-library folks, so we have to be able to do an even better job at analyzing both data and resources and communicating to customers how to access this data no matter where it is or what format its in.