- Why did you decide to take part in the BIBLIO course?
During my library sciences studies I felt intrigued by the changes digital is making to the information sciences field and to library services. In fact, I did my master thesis on the change due to digital of the concept of document for libraries, museums, archives. After my degree I continued my path with a post lauream degree course in “digital humanities”. I am now starting my career as a librarian, but I think, since digital transformation is a continuous movement, that I have to keep studying if I want to keep updated. The course is the perfect way to do this, with the added bonus of the opportunity to network with other library professionals interested in the same topic.
- What change do you want to make in your library?
The mission of public libraries is still, even with digital transformation, to provide for services like access to information, education, preservation of heritage, assistance to research and so on. Librarians have an opportunity to play a crucial role in the area of equity, diversity, and inclusion. So I want to use this role in my library to educate the population about LGBT matters, since ignorance is one of the causes of fear of what is different. I want to make the library an inclusive space, where the community can be engaged and challenged about its beliefs among this topic to foster a better understanding of reality.
- Tell us more about the work-based learning – how does it work, what do you expect from it, how do you work with your mentor?
At first I am going to collect and create a list of LGBT themed documents to be found in the library – if there is any – and write a document which gives a small analysis of the situation. Then, I am going to analyze the territory and make a list of companies or people – at a local or national level – which could be interested in a collaboration within the project – or with the library at a later moment. Next, I am going to think about possible activities to propose, taking into consideration the possibilities of the library (collections, staff, money possibilities, building…). Further, I will set a preliminary draft of those activities to propose to users after the setting of the activities, I will set up a preliminary draft of a video which describes aims and final results of the project.
I expect from the work-based learning two different outcomes, actually. On one hand, to understand and to learn how a civic library can implement a project (a big part of the Biblio course was about management). On the other hand, on a more social level, I hope to begin a digital inclusive process in my library that can help in involving citizens in library activities. A process starting with LGBT issues.
The contact with the mentor will be continuous. He/she will constantly be aware of what I will be doing, due to a shared folder that I will update every time, where they can put notes to if they see fit whenever they want. “Phisical interaction” will be just after every step (the five ones I previously described) where a final update and discussion will be made about the reaching of the set goal and the way the activities were done. A final evaluation meeting will be held after the last step to assess the project.
- What is, in your view, the future role of libraries?
I think the library – whether physical or digital- will keep being a container of “true” information (compared to fake news the internet is full of) and will keep being a safe space for citizens to engage, connect and keep in touch with community spirit. It will probably start offering more and more digital services but it will not lose their role as information institutions.
- If you have to explain to people in one sentence why they should come to the library and what they will find there, what would you say?
Libraries are for everyone – even for you – they fill your gaps and challenge you to become a better person through information.