Michael Dula recently began his appointment as chief technology officer for the Yale University Library, which is one of the largest university libraries in North America. In this newly created role, he will develop a technology strategy for the University’s 18 different libraries, which house over 12.5 million volumes.
Dula recently talked with YaleNews about how libraries are adapting to the digital age.
Here’s one exchange from the discussion.
What is the role of the physical library in the digital age?
Admittedly, there is a vast amount of information available online. However, the physical library continues to be relevant, since it meets the demand for a quiet place to focus, study, and do research.
Also, modern libraries complement digital information, since a big part of what libraries do is purchase electronic resources to make them available to our patrons for free. Although a lot of information is free online, it is not necessarily accurate and complete information. Librarians are well suited to help people to navigate and identify credible electronic data.
Furthermore, the Yale libraries provide access to a wealth of material that is not online – for instance special collections that are unique to the University.
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