14 March 2015

Can we tear down the wall between the researchers and the library?

"Can we tear down the wall between the researchers and the library? Research support services at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology" by Marius Haugen.

A long time ago, I went to a UCL DIS event into the current issues in LIS. This event really highlighted the difference between libraries in the UK and elsewhere in regards to research support services. The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) it is a science and technology specific university, however, it has a humanities department. NTNU is definitely a complex institution with 12 different libraries and its rare books, special collections and a medical collection spanning 4 departments.

It was very interesting to learn the differences of librarianship in Norway. For example, focus in university research support to satisfy user needs has recently become a trend. Furthermore, from what I could understand, unlike in the UK where librarians are expected to have a LIS qualification and work experience, only the research librarians in NTNU have this. Subject librarians on the other hand, have degrees from other fields which may be completely different from LIS. Nonetheless, the need to tear down the issue of "silo mentality" of faculty vs. librarians still remains a prevalent issue in the UK and Norway.