New trend? Librarians, archivists & museum professionals ruling the world

I’m referring to this almost ebullient post by the Library of Congress’ Butch Lazorchak on the Signal blog, “#sxswLAM: Libraries, Archives and Museums in an Interactive World.” It’s a beautiful vision, and it’s great to hear that participating in the South By Southwest Interactive Conference has given him this kind of warm rosy optimistic glow.

Butch’s post bolsters my claim that “blurring of organizational roles” is a significant trend for archives. In an earlier draft of my trends post I had a list of trends I wanted to see, and although I didn’t phrase it in quite the same way, “librarians, archivists & museum professionals ruling the world” is pretty close. It’s my hope (and Butch’s vision) that LAM professionals can emerge as leaders in the evolving digital world. But this will only happen if more of them engage in wider discussions, as some LAM representatives are doing.

How optimistic are you about this trend? Do you have other examples to add to the many in Butch’s post? What else needs to be done?

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2 Responses to New trend? Librarians, archivists & museum professionals ruling the world

  1. Dennis Moser says:

    This is something that I have felt strongly about for years — nice to see the idea catching on. I wish that ACRL had truly seized the opportunity at the 2011 Conference themed, “A Declaration of Interdependence.” This really does mean speaking, sharing, yes, reaching beyond the silos of our institutions and the usual suspects.

    Attending and speaking at conferences a little bit outside our quotidian is one way to engage in the broader discussions. Here’s hoping that our conference program developers will read this and remember it …

  2. KimBoo York says:

    From the moment I entered the MLIS program at FSU, I’ve been lumping “LAMs” into a group I call “infosci professionals.” There is a lot of differences in professions in regards to functional work, but at a higher level I think we are all definitely in the same job. I really appreciate Lankes’ “Atlas of New Librarianship” — except for the name, as it’s not about librarianship, but about information science as a whole (what a sadly missed opportunity!) — in trying to redefine what we do outside of functionality. So I’m all about the rosy glow of optimism!

    At FSU there is the History of Text Technology program, run by the English Department, which I am being certified in. Among SLIS students and HoTT students (which include a number of digital humanities people) there is a growing crossover of interest, and a realization that our fields are intimately intertwined. So I think in the “generation” of students and new professors being generated today there is a real awareness of the blurring of roles. Academia is a large, sluggish boat to change direction, but it is happening.

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