An (Unprecedented) Look Ahead: Academic Librarianship in the Age of COVID

Sponsored by SAGE Publishing

Recorded on 09/02/2020
Posted in The Authority File

Episode 152

Though it’s difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel, the COVID-19 pandemic will eventually end. After months of upheaval, the potential for major changes in our health care, government, and education systems will be left in coronavirus’ wake. But what transformations will be permanent?

Linda Van Keuren of Georgetown Medical, Sally Gibson of Missouri Western State, and Kat McGrath of the University of British Columbia have found the positives amidst waves of budget cuts and campus closures. Reliable teleworking, robust online services, and stronger partnerships between publishers and libraries are some of the adaptations they’d like to see stick around.

In the final episode of this four-part series, Van Keuren, Gibson, and McGrath discuss the future of interlibrary loans for ebook content and how job descriptions for librarians will ultimately change. As university heads pull purse strings taut, they chat about how usage and demographic data could help mold library budgets moving forward. Van Keuren notes: “It’s much more meaningful with administrators and finance people to have that demographic information, as we have to make some tough decisions potentially in the months and years to come.”


About the guests:

Linda Van Keuren
Assistant Dean for Access & Resource Management
Georgetown Medical

Sally Gibson
Library Director
Missouri Western State

Kat McGrath
Renewals and Collections Librarian
University of British Columbia