Start Early and Set Priorities from Putting Learning into Library Planning - Scott Bennett

Start Early and Set Priorities

Start early, set priorities, and stick to them. Do not wait until you have funding, or even the prospect of funding, to begin planning. In a highly competitive environment for funding, it is usually the need to solve pressing problems that motivates colleges and universities to invest in libraries. We used to depend on collection growth to trigger space crises every twenty years or so. That driver is largely gone. So it is now aging mechanical systems, outdated electrical supply, code-compliance issues, or just the increasingly dysfunctional accumulation of formerly expedient fixes that are forcing the issue. To be sure, these are real problems and require attention. The challenge is to ensure that a mission-driven concern with learning claims at least equal attention as projects take form and are funded. The best way to do this is to start early and, at every turn, inculcate the view that it is the library’s potential impact on learning that makes it competitive with, say, a much-needed new science building. Starting in this way, and starting early, enhances your competitive position. But it also will give you the immense satisfaction of getting your project strongly aligned with institutional mission.

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see more: LSC Postings re: Planning (August 2015)