ACRL announces the publication of The Living Library: An Intellectual Ecosystem by Patricia Steele, David Cronrath, Sandra Parsons Vicchio, and Nancy Fried Foster.
The Living Library describes the evolution of one possible future for academic libraries – as laboratories for cross-disciplinary investigation. At the University of Maryland, a collaborative effort among the Libraries, the School of Architecture and the Department of Anthropology led to the participation of students, faculty, and staff in an initiative to design a full renovation of the main library building with the guidance of professionals in anthropology and architecture. As part of the process, Anthropology students and library faculty and staff investigated how the broader university community undertakes its work in the library. Architecture students in graduate design studio analyzed the findings along with the building and then created a series of designs to support faculty, student, and staff work practices. All of the work was reviewed by a leadership committee from a variety of disciplines.
The authors – the library director, the dean of architecture, a practicing architect, and an applied anthropologist – describe the project, explain the methods and review the outcomes, sharing their particular experiences of the living library. The Living Library is essential reading for academic librarians interested in innovative building redesign and space usage.
The Living Library is available for purchase in print, as an e-book, and as a print/ e-book bundle through the ALA Online Store; in print and for Kindle through Amazon.com; and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the U.S. or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.