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On Monday I went to my first LAUNC-CH. It’s a conference put on by the librarians’ association at UNC-CH, and it’s a really good local, one-day conference. They keynote was Lee Rainie, who I have followed from afar for years. He’s at the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life project, which as he emphasized, is a fact tank not a think tank. His talk ran through really interesting statistics as you might guess, and really focused on the changing information environment and what is happening with our users. He’s a really engaging speaker.
It was fascinating, but as it turns out was a lot about what I was talking about next on the agenda.
I gave a modified and longer version of my Thursdays at Starling talk if you happened to see that one. I spent less time on the evolving information environment (especially because we’d already had such an engaging speaker cover that) and more time on new types of jobs that are evolving and what librarians can do to gain the skills necessary for these new jobs that didn’t exist when most of us were in library school. As part of this I looked at the directories for all the UNC system and NCICU schools to get a sense of trends. Fascinating stuff! If you’re interested, here are the updated slides:
I got really good questions ranging from an administrator who wanted to know more about how to go about finding information to write these job descriptions to someone asking about the necessity of a library degree in the future to someone asking about the bleeding at the edges of librarianship and when does someone quit being a librarian. I really enjoyed the questions and it made me realize that I’m interested in exploring these issues further and would like to write more on it… so hopefully more will come on the the topic in the future. I love conferences that have a lasting impact!