The Wild-Card Academic Library in 2013

Harold Billings

Abstract

The transformational agents that have produced dramatic changes in academic libraries in recent years will continue to influence those libraries over the next decade, but it should not be assumed that the academic library of 2013 will represent a natural progression from the library of today. Rather, the academic library of the future will be marked by unanticipated “punctuations” that will be just as surprising and unexpected as have been so many of the influences that have shaped the contemporary library. This paper suggests that “wild cards” will be introduced into the evolutionary growth of the academic library, some perhaps harmful, but more likely enabling libraries to provide even richer information resources and better services than they do today.

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