Den osynliga bibliotekarien? : En studie av meröppna bibliotek och professionen i Norrbotten och Västerbotten våren 2020
Sammanfattning: More-opened hours is a fast-growing service at public libraries in Sweden. The aim of this thesis is to examine how this new operations impacts the profession. How are the attitudes of the emplyoees affected? What are the consequences for the daily work of librarians? How may more-opened hours transform the future of the profession? These questions will be adressed by examining public libraries and combined public- and school libraries in the north of Sweden. The theoretical point of departure consists of profession theory, in particular Andrew Abbott’s theories and the notion of ”jurisdiction”. The theoretical framework is supplemented by Anders Ørom’s ideal librarian identities. A mixed method of survey and interview is applied. The data from each approach is analyzed separately and subsequently pooled, by means of applied thematic analysis. The result of the study shows that a vast majority of the librarians hold a positive attitude toward more-opened hours. This is found to be closely related to a user-perspective. Overall, librarians’ work is not dramatically changed, but certain routine tasks like book handling and tidying have increased. A new librarian identity, the Attendant (Funktionären), is suggested for maintanance tasks surrounding the more-opened service. Such a developement risks limiting the librarian’s professional jurisdiction and lead to deprofessionalization. However, the more-opened service may also support professionalization by relocating resources and competence from self-service tasks to more visible and qualified work. Additionally, more-opened hours may generate new areas for professional expansion, such as Library on demand and the field of statistics. Lastly, the results tentatively suggest that more-opened hours might play a part in interprofessional competition and a strenghtening of borders to the school. In conclusion, the impacts are complex but they offer much potential. This is a two years master’s thesis in Library and Information Science.
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