May 17, 2022

Video: “Research Has Changed: Have Libraries?” (RLUK Conference Presentation by Tom Hickerson, U. of Calgary)

On March 20th, Tom Hickerson, University of Calgary, presented at the RLUK Conference 2019 in London.

A video recording of Hickerson’s talk, “Research Has Changed: Have Libraries?” is now available online and embedded below.


Today research libraries are seeking new ways of engaging with the campus research enterprise. Research underway at the University of Calgary has identified a constellation of services necessary to enable today’s cross-disciplinary research into societal “grand challenges.” Increasingly, these services do not focus on traditional models of library research support via collection development, instruction, or database searching. This paper reviews outcomes of a multi-year, $1M study funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation conducted at the University of Calgary. In this study, faculty from multiple disciplines identified the needs of modern researchers. These needs were then explored through a library sub-grant program with library staff partnering with faculty researchers as project co-participants. Through these projects, a suite of library research services, expertise, and infrastructure is being defined. It includes newly developed functional supports, and library staff acting as research facilitators. It recognises the synergistic interaction between digital content and analytical tools. It sees traditional strengths like special collections being exploited in new ways, and emergence of lab-like spaces enabling multidisciplinary and cross-unit teamwork. Most importantly, through these collaborations, faculty perceptions of the research library and its services are being transformed.

Source: Conference/Presentation Info Page

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.