Everybody within the bubble cheers! Everyone outside the bubble groans, “not another one “they say.
The Westminster bubble has excreted yet another bit of useless drivel in the guise of research called “Envisioning the Library of the Future” .
I wrote about some of the issues when it was going on here:
Is this really the level of research that we get from government? You would imagine that having librarians involved, people who are supposed to understand data it would be proper robust bit of research like you'd get from a scientific paper. The outsourced part of the study alone cost somewhere between 65k and 85K you can see the tender document here.
And yet they spoke to less people that regularly use my local library which is tiny. The online thing nobody knew about (I told my local council to stick the link on their website), they told the "library relationship managers" and a few others outside of the sector but nobody else knew about it. There is a spread sheet with the email address of most of the libraries in the country on the DCMS website, have they never heard of email merge or even mail merge to let people know? I cannot find the direct link anymore but there’s a version online here.
I would imagine with all the staffing time spent on it by the various staff members, the true cost of this drivel was probably nearer a quarter of a million pounds, yet it has no hard data, offers no solutions to the problems and draws no conclusions on a proper way forward.
Is this all the upper echelons of library management does churn out one of these every couple of years at great cost but with no benefit?
The giant elephant in the room of community libraries not saving money they seem to be ignoring, we all know that sacking low paid library managers/assistants and replacing them with self-service and dozens of volunteers doesn't save any money yet nobody is properly researching this?
No wonder the country is in a mess, we need better policy based on real research not this sort of drivel.