sharing knowledge and information three views of the future
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Sharing knowledge and information: three views of the future. David Bawden City University London. A view over the next 20 years. based on reality - current trends with some prediction - futurology imagination - science fiction. Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future

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a view over the next 20 years
A view over the next 20 years
  • based on
    • reality - current trends
  • with some
    • prediction - futurology
    • imagination - science fiction
dangers of prediction
Dangers of prediction
  • failure of imagination
  • failure of nerve

(Arthur C Clarke)

current trends
Current trends
  • economic situation
  • a digital world
  • web 2
  • new generations
  • the ‘cloud’
economic situation uk
Economic situation (UK)
  • generally bad for information services

but

  • some sectors do well (law, health ..)
  • ‘library brand’ flourishes
  • renewed enthusiasm for the ‘real’
  • and for sharing of knowledge and expertise
a digital world
A digital world
  • digital is now the normal form of information

(particularly, reference, business, academic)

  • most information is born digital, and lives and dies digital

but

  • the real book and the physical ‘library place’ do not go away
web 2 0
Web 2.0
  • ‘to Google’ is a verb in the English language
  • Amazon.com is ‘the bookshop’
  • Wikipedia is ‘the encyclopedia’
  • Facebook, Twitter and blogs are the natural way of communicating information
  • Will all books soon be e-books ?
libraries and web 2
Libraries and Web 2
  • Fight ?
  • Collaborate ?
  • Copy ?
  • Ignore ?
new generations
New generations
  • Gen X, Gen Y, Google generation
  • young people’s information behaviour is totally different
  • or is it ?
the cloud
The ‘cloud’
  • Information resources and software held on networks, with wireless access from any place
  • Where then is
    • The collection
    • The ‘information place’
    • ‘my’ information
summary of trends
Summary of trends
  • a mixed picture
  • some clear trends
  • but also counter-movements
  • the future is not as clear as some commentators tell us
three scenarios
Three scenarios
  • Business as usual
  • Changing landscapes
  • Into the clouds
business as usual
Business as usual
  • rely on library ‘brand image’
  • build on continuing desire for the collection and the ‘information place’
  • establish consensus (truce ?) with newer forms of information communication
changing landscapes
Changing landscapes
  • changing image and name
    • Information Commons, Discovery Centre, Idea Store
  • some services close, others expand
  • greater integration with wider institution
    • Business (KM), education, culture
  • creative balance physical / digital
into the clouds
Into the clouds
  • new concept of ‘collection’
  • no physical ‘information place’
  • preservation ?
  • information specialists become
    • consultants / advisers / educators
    • researchers / ‘publishers’

R Fox, Library in the clouds, OCLC Systems and Services, 2009, 25(3), 156-161

conclusions
Conclusions
  • the future is not certain
  • it will not be as we expect
  • It will be more important then ever to share knowledge effectively
  • library / information services will survive and thrive (but not as they are now)
  • we can influence our future
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