Library management issues: then and now
Kok, Victoria T.
Kriz, Harry M.
Fang, Carolyn S.
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This paper presents an overview of the shifting issues in library management, from pre to post electronic access to information. Beginning in the 1940s through the 1970s, research libraries were faced with an information explosion and the rapid growth rate of their collections. The issues confronting library administrators during that period were mainly physical managements involving shelving and weeding of materials, storage space, users’ in-house access to the collection, and preservation of the print materials. From 1980s to date, due to rapidly evolving information technology, advent of information in electronic format, electronic delivery of information and high user expectations, the issues facing library management has shifted outside the confines of the physical environment to the following: -Setting up technology infrastructures to provide seamless remote access to information for users. Thus, library administrators find themselves in relatively unfamiliar arenas, such as grappling with new issues of licensing, authentication, digitization, user instruction within electronic environments, and changing skill and competency requirements of librarians and staff. -Developing ways to reach technophile users who are sophisticated in their ability to use technology, are accustomed to the convenience, speed, and gargantuan retrievals from Googles and are unconcerned about the accuracy, legitimacy, and currency of their information sources. -Convincing users who have unshakable faith in the Internet being able to provide all needed information sources, that libraries not only can supply the information they need, but the information supplied by the libraries are from sources that are valid, uncorrupted, and as complete, current, and authoritative. Reallocating financial resources to absorb the costs of upgrading and replacing hardware and software that continuously become obsolete as new technologies emerge almost yearly.