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ACRL Releases Report on Libraries and Higher Education in 2025
The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) has released a new report, "Futures Thinking for Academic Librarians: Higher Education in 2025," to prompt academic librarians to consider what trends may impact the future of higher education in order to take strategic action now. The report is available at http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/acrl/issues/value/futures.cfm.
Authored by David J. Staley, director of the Harvey Goldberg Center for Excellence in Teaching in the History Department of Ohio State University, and Kara J. Malenfant, ACRL scholarly communications and government relations specialist, the report presents 26 possible scenarios for the future which may have an impact on all types of academic libraries over the next 15 years. The scenarios are based on implications assessment of current trends and reflect a variety of potential futures for higher education.
The scenarios represent a variety of themes relating to academic culture, demographics, distance education, funding, globalization, infrastructure/facilities, libraries, political climate, publishing industry, societal values, students/learning, and technology. They are organized in a "scenario space" visualization tool, reflecting the expert judgment of ACRL members as to their expectations and perceptions about the probability, impact, speed of change and threat/opportunity potential of each scenario. The study focuses on implications of these futures for academic libraries and includes a step-by-step activity for academic librarians to undertake scenario thinking in their libraries.
For more information on the report and futures research, listen to a podcast conversation with the authors on the ACRL Insider blog (http://www.acrl.ala.org/acrlinsider/2010/06/21/futures-thinking-for-academic-librarians/).
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