Illustration: Hands add to collection of yellow gears on teal background (Illustration: Prostock Studio/Adobe Stock)

The Necessity of Collaboration

November 1, 2021

I conducted an informal survey and found that a typical large academic library has around 15–25 collaborative partners, while a large public library has about half that number. For example, Georgetown University Library in Washington, D.C., has roughly 20 partners, including large national organizations (HathiTrust), a regional consortium (NorthEast Research Libraries), campus partners (Georgetown Writing … Continue reading The Necessity of Collaboration


Librarian's Library by Allison Escoto

Up to the Challenge

November 1, 2021

Foundations of Intellectual Freedom By Emily J. M. Knox This text is a practical introduction to intellectual freedom in librarianship. It provides a broad overview, including historical perspectives, key US case law and precedents, a presentation of opposing viewpoints, and an examination of various professional codes of ethics, among other essential topics. The work also … Continue reading Up to the Challenge


Drag queen reads a book to children (Photo: Jennifer Ricard)

A Deeper Look: Censorship beyond Books

July 8, 2021

Databases and digital resources Almost every library has at least one database subscription that offers curated content published by reputable sources. The target audience and content vary widely among databases, and because databases are digital resources, users can access the content in various settings—in the library, at school, and at home. These factors can cause … Continue reading A Deeper Look: Censorship beyond Books


Illustration of dozens of diverse faces (Illustration: Franzi Draws)

Ask, Listen, Empower

June 1, 2021

Put another way, it is not enough to simply be not racist; we must work to be antiracist. Psychologist Beverly Daniel Tatum, president emerita of Spelman College, uses the analogy of a moving walkway. The history and structures of racism are the walkway. It is not enough to simply stop walking, because you’re still moving … Continue reading Ask, Listen, Empower




Watercolor image of a Black woman's face surrounded by swirls of color (Photo illustration: ©Victor Tongdee/Adobe Stock)

The Weight We Carry

November 2, 2020

Although stereotypes about cold, harsh, robotic librarians persist, those of us who work with the public must display emotional intelligence for our patrons’ sakes—and our own. Emotional labor Vicarious traumatization (VT) occurs when we work with patrons whose traumatic stories transfer onto us. We may not realize that transference has happened. Subtly and gradually, it … Continue reading The Weight We Carry




Knowledge IQ

November 1, 2019

Fundamental tenets of knowledge management can help your library gradually move from humbug thoughts such as, “That’s just how we’ve always done it!” to more affirming ones like, “There are new, improved ways we can try with an open mind.” This transformation depends largely on creating an organizational culture that is open to sharing knowledge, … Continue reading Knowledge IQ