Thursday, March 25, 2010

Research Libraries at Risk?

OCLC Research has released a new report, “Research Libraries, Risk and Systemic Change.” Here are the risk clusters it identifies (9):

The report suggests two main strategies for mitigation: shared infrastructure and restructured workflows. While these strategies are emerging, the report concludes with this:
Most institutions continue to direct resources in traditional ways towards operations that are marginal to institutional and national research priorities, towards processes and services that are ignored or undervalued by their clients and towards staff activities that are driven more by legacy professional concerns than user needs. To properly respond to the risks identified here, research libraries need to come together around an action agenda aimed at improvement of the research enterprise they serve. Incremental revision of traditional operational models will only hasten the movement of important new research services to other entities within the academy, leaving the library with only the vestigial values of its book-determined legacy. It will look the same but everything will have changed.