Embracing Disruption

New technologies, markets and new uses for existing technologies

During the pandemic academic and research libraries have been agile in deploying current systems and technologies to support students and academics in new ways.  In some cases this meant the rapid uptake of new technologies. In others, it has meant redeploying existing systems for new purposes. As we move into a post-pandemic world, SCONUL member libraries have an opportunity to consider how well our current technologies have withstood the challenges of recent times and how fit for purpose they are to meet the demands of institutions that are looking afresh at how they deliver on their core missions.

This programme, led by the Technology and Markets Group, will look at how existing and emerging technologies might be deployed to serve the needs of member libraries and their institutions over the coming months and years. We will create opportunities to share information on use cases and workflows around emerging technology and seek out examples of innovative ways of using existing systems and kit. We will collaborate with colleagues leading work on organisational development on the staff skills needed to deploy these effectively.  We will use case studies and other ways of sharing experience and practice that allows members to learn from each other. We will also draw on expertise from outside our immediate community.

We also aim to provide space for members to consider how our technological needs might change in the long term. For example, what are the long-term prospects for discovery systems, and how library data might be integrated into a more unified, one stop institutional system? 

Our discussions will be led not by what current and new technologies are capable of delivering but instead by what we as a community need technology to deliver for us. Questions of budgets, staff resources and the practical barriers to uptake will be central to our discussions.