In the video Building Academic Library 2.0, by Meredith Farkas, we are presented with how academic libraries can use Web 2.0 technologies to keep up with the changing information seeking culture of academic library patrons. Meredith brings up many good points, those that could possibly be of great benefit, such as making the organization more transparent, creating more partnerships internally and externally, and having an organizational presence where your patrons/users/customers are. However, the part of her presentation that resonated with me the most was her discussion on how to build or develop a learning culture, what she called learning 2.0.
Many of the aspects Meredith mentions as being key to developing a learning 2.0 culture in an organization are attributes we would all like to see implemented in our own organizations, but sadly are not. Attributes such as nurturing talent, collecting knowledge internally, and analyzing the organization’s structure for its ability to allow for a learning 2.0 culture are all key elements to an organization being nimble enough to keep up with all the technological changes occurring all the time. Developing this type of culture is imperative to implementing Library 2.0, which will allow libraries to better serve library patrons. Library 2.0 is aptly described by the blog, 23 Things you can do to Become Web 2.0 Savvy: #15 On Library 2.0 and Web 2.0 blog, where it describes Library 2.0 as a “term used to describe a new set of concepts for developing and delivering library services” that are an extension of Web 2.0 philosophies. In order to serve our patrons in a Web 2.0 environment an academic library needs to develop and maintain a learning 2.0 culture. Learning 2.0, Library 2.0, and Web 2.0 are interconnected with regard to how academic libraries can meet user needs in a Web 2.0 world. It is up to the managers of the academic library as to whether a learning 2.0 organization will emerge or not, “as managers, you have important roles to play in a learning organizational environment” and to “assist staff in modifying their behavior in light of the new information,” (Evans and Ward, 2007, P. 220). In this case, understanding how a learning 2.0 organization can be hugely successful in a Web 2.0 environment that their patrons are demanding.
Academic library organizations need to structure their organizations in a way that nurtures Web 2.0 philosophies in order to successfully build and maintain a learning 2.0 culture. Web 2.0 characteristics such as building participation, creating partnerships and community, communicating better and more effectively, and being technologically agile are characteristics that academic library organizations should also embrace. As Meredith states in her presentation, academic library 2.0 is a state of mind in a way. According to Farkas, building academic library 2.0 needs to be looked at from a similar perspective as Web 2.0, where academic library organizations are analyzing organizational as well as employee needs and reevaluating what they do and why they do it.
Evans, G.E., & Ward, P.L. (2007). Management Basics for Information Professionals (3rd Ed.). New York: Neal-Schuman.
Farkas, Meredith (2007). Building Academic Library 2.0. Retrieved from: http://meredith.wolfwater.com/wordpress/2007/11/26/building-academic-library-20-video/
PLCMC (September 10, 2006). Learning 2.0: 23 Things you can do to Become Web 2.0 Savvy: #15 On Library 2.0 and Web 2.0 blog. Retrieved from: http://plcmclearning.blogspot.com/2006/09/15-on-library-20-web-20.html