November 25, 2015

Canada: A Look at the Past, Present, and Future of the McGill University Library

The following article runs nearly 1700 words.

From The McGill Tribune (Student Newspaper):

The two most recently opened libraries at McGill, the Nahum Gelber Law Library and Marvin Duchow Music Library, were completed in 1998 and 2006 respectively. Their designs reflected a new priority in libraries.

“They had library [book collections] for years, what had happened was they needed space,” [Richard] Virr [Head and Curator of Manuscripts] said. “We’re returning almost to the time when libraries had major reading rooms, because that was student space.”


The provincial government’s $38.2 million cuts to McGill’s operating budget last December led to a $1.8 million reduction to the library budget.

France Bouthillier, director of the School of Information Studies, said libraries worldwide are undergoing a shift in role, and budget cuts have merely sped up this inevitable process at McGill.

Librarians From Outside of McGill Quoted in the Article

  • Lizabeth Wilson, dean of university libraries at the University of Washington
  • Winston Tabb, Sheridan Dean of University Libraries and Museums at Johns Hopkins University
  •  Carolyn Argentati, Deputy Director of Libraries Administration at NCSU

Read the Complete Article

See Also: McGill University Library Mission Statement

See Also: McGill University Library Annual Reports (2005-2011)

See Also: McGill University LibQUAL Survey Results (2002-2010)

Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

Craft Exceptional Digital Experiences for Your Users
Digital UX LJ and ER&L present an exceptional roster of library and user experience (UX) experts for our newest online course, Digital UX Workshop: Crafting Exceptional Digital Experiences for the User-Centered Library. During this 5-week online workshop, you will explore why UX matters, and how to sell user-centered design (UCD) to leadership within your organization. Whether you want to redesign your website, revamp your user interface, create a new discovery tool, implement e-resources, or develop a mobile app—you’ll have a tangible product by the end of the course.