21st Century Libraries Look Like: Something Unexpected


Here are some images from numerous resources that typify something unexpected in a library. They draw attention to libraries and open up the idea of “library” to new understanding and new customers.

Johnson County (KS) Library System
mobytruck

MrHyde-JoCo-Library

From the “Get London Reading” campaign.
london

Picture+14

get_london_reading_bricklane_2

From the British Libraries Pinterest site.
britishlibrary2

britishlibrary

Tara Robertson blog about activating the library space, featuring “Koja” by Anna-Karin Johansson.
Koja by Anna-Karin Johansson

Gilpin County (CO) Library
GILPINCo

Kansas City (MO) Library System
Kansas-City-Public-Library-Missouri_2

School library interior in Medellin, Columbia.
colombia

Colbern Road Branch, Mid-Continent (MO) Public Library
Marilyn

Sachse (TX) Public Library
motorcycle

Malibu (CA) Public Library Grand Opening
Malibu-Library-Grand-Opening

Lauren Smedley’s 3D printer, Fayetteville (NY) Free Library.
L-and-the-Makerbot

The Fab Lab, Fayetteville (NY) Free Library.
Maker7

Fairfield-Nichols Branch, Trumbull (CT) Library System
printer

The Creative Cat
cat

Use your library’s space to tell stories.
Librarystairs

Use your library’s space to inspire.
jay-walkers-library1

Use your library’s space to delight.
colorful

Use your library’s space to educate.
RotorNot

Use your library’s space to attract.
Palaces
librarysign

6 Comments

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6 responses to “21st Century Libraries Look Like: Something Unexpected

  1. Kay Dee

    VERY COOL!!
    Thanks for sharing!!

  2. Pingback: 21st Century Libraries Look Like: Something Unexpected | 21st Century Library Blog | It's a Dangerous Business

  3. Steve, love love LOVE this stuff! Lots of great ideas here.
    I am interested in new metrics for assessing what makes a 21st century public library great. Something beyond the typical output data like people served and how many books got checked out. I lead a public law library. Our patrons are fighting for their legal rights. They don’t really check much out. Ideas?

    • Johnny,
      Thanks, I’m glad they are working for you. Sounds like you’ve addressed a Goliath of a task, but I’m confident it will pay big returns to your organization. Have you considered taking a “business incubator” approach? or a live lending program? Sounds like your patrons could benefit from experts willing to give them some free legal advice, or at least point them in the right direction to find relevant statutes or case law.

      A couple of other posts about metrics that you may not have seen are;
      Outcomes, Outcomes, Outcomes
      Sure-Fire, Can’t-Fail Way to Prove Your Library’s Relevance

      I’m interested to hear what other ideas you develop for your library organization. It’s all about what works for you.

  4. Pingback: News | Ferndale Public Library Observer

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