I am more than a little delighted to announce that, from 5th January next year, I will be library assistant at St Hugh’s College, University of Oxford. This is a full-time position and I will be working for the librarian Nora Khayi.
The main purpose of this blog post for #citylis-ers is to say that, when I started the Library Science MSc in September 2013, I had no experience working in a library. Thanks to the great team at Reading Libraries I was able to volunteer and then get a Saturday job which led to lots of casual hours; all of which taught me at least as much as my lectures at City.
But the main point is that I am sure that the skills and methods instilled in me by #citylis were a crucial factor in landing the job – a Twitter presence, a blog, networking through CILIP, a positive, forward-looking vision for libraries. If any of you – particularly the more introverted amongst you – are wondering if doing all of that can really make any difference, I assure you, it can.
HUGE thanks go to Lyn Robinson, David Bawden and, of course,
Mr Impact – Ernesto Priego.
See you in the library.*
*Not at St Hugh’s, though – you’re not allowed into that without an appointment. 😉
Here’s the (draft) abstract:
This research project examines how the library building accommodates books and how the library catalogue allows the management and use of those books; all in the context of the great increase in book numbers after the establishment of printing with moveable type in Europe from about the year 1500. The following subjects are studied in particular: furniture for storing books, how this is laid out and how it develops; the intellectual and practical concerns behind the development of the library catalogue; the design of library buildings, particularly internally, to house, provide, and preserve increasing numbers of books; the intellectual changes brought to the catalogue by physical developments, such as paper slips, cards, and computerisation; the era of the remote library warehouse, accessed only indirectly. Examples are sought throughout Western Europe and North America, with particular attention paid to two of the UK’s legal-deposit libraries, the Bodleian Libraries of the University of Oxford, and the British Library. The project finds that these institutions anticipate a reduction in the number of printed books and other matter that they must ingest but are unable to reliably predict when this will occur and have subsequently planned for a short- and medium-term of continuing growth.
That’s about five months of reading/note-taking/thinking and seven weeks of writing (part-time), coming to about 22,000 words for the main chapters (excluding intros, appendices, etc.).
I look forward to being able to publish it here in the new year, for anyone who is interested. Having said that, my line manager at work told me I was writing the most boring dissertation imaginable; but she’s always ready with the joke.