In Sweden, the state is responsible for the production of audio books as well as for the central lending facility for these books. The Swedish Agency for Accessible Media (MTM) is a government agency that supplies books for people with reading impairments which includes talking books, Braille books, e-textbooks, tactile picture books and sign language literature.
Good management data contribute to highlighting the impact of investment in library services. But do Norwegian university and college libraries have access to the management data that they need?
With an overwhelming amount of material and data being published globally in a wide range of formats, locating and accessing relevant information can be a challenge. Both tools and practices of metadata production and management should be developed to answer to the needs and possibilities of the open Semantic Web environment.
Since 2008, the Aalborg Public Libraries in North Jutland have been concentrating on accessibility in the municipal libraries by establishing a sensible mix of serviced and self-service opening hours. With small steps to begin with, later with bigger gestures – to the obvious delight of the citizens.
Editorial: Library and accessibility
The direction taken by libraries over the next decade will shape not only the library itself, but also our perception of the role of the library for the rest of the century.
“I have written a serious text, so there is no need for any illustrations,” said an author to the publishers who requested me to illustrate one of his scientific articles. He, like several of his colleagues, believes that images imply that their texts risk appearing as lightweight. But where scientific texts are concerned, the image is one of the most effective instruments.
In a globally oriented world, the significance of locality is easily overlooked. In management, we tend to demand complex, service-related information and think on a spatial scale, which is far too expansive, to capture the true essence of our operational environment. Reversing this way of thinking may be more useful. Simplifying service demand definitions and increasing awareness of local level needs offers new insights into library management.
The public library in Denmark in the year 2013 has changed significantly. Societal and technological changes have meant that today the public library handles tasks that supplement the classic library service with its main emphasis on information and mediation of the materials.
Sweden now has a comprehensive system for nationwide library statistics from all publicly funded libraries. This is how we did it.
Some public libraries are situated in grand new buildings while others are located in shabby brick buildings from the early 70’s. Some public libraries focus strongly on new and innovative library services and others are run in a much more traditional fashion. But regardless of all other aspects – how much does the economy of the library influence its usage?