|'Study, study, study' by pnoeric on Flickr|
The topic - do we still need physical libraries - is enormously broad, and it's one that cuts to the heart of many current debates about the future of libraries (and gives me flashbacks to my very first LIS MA essay on 'the paperless library'). To be able to answer the question you need to be able to discern what the true purpose(s) and value(s) of libraries is(are). This breadth of scope put me off listening to the podcast until the evening before the meeting, but, having braved it, I can report that I found it really interesting listening, and also a debate that wasn't so broad as to avoid all summarization.
There were several main strands that ran through each of the four speakers' pieces, and through the subsequent lengthy question session:
Physicality | Space for thinking and working | Librarians | E-stuff is great | Democratisation of knowledge | MoneyWe covered all of these in the brown bag discussion one way and another, and what follows is an attempt to synthesise all the various opinions and to discern my own.
|'Library' by Stewart on Flickr|