Consulting Services for Academic Libraries and Consortia

Apologies: this site is rather outdated and needs work (for example the list of clients and the photos have disappeared!).  I don’t have time to update it now, but I keep the site active primarily as a partial record of my work as a library consultant (which skills I am now using in other domains).  – Sam 2017

{Note: beginning in 2014/15 Sam has cut back on consulting and turned over his column “Curating Collective Collections” to Bob Kieft;   He is working on new projects in “retirement” mode…but still willing to consider occasional interesting library consultancies.}

Innovating in building dynamic collections and organizations —      after 20 years at Cornell University and 13 years at Carleton College — Sam is a freelance change agent, helping libraries and consortia:

  • define their futures and re-design their organizations,
  • strategically reposition themselves within the university,
  • responsibly manage legacy collections locally, and
  • link local collections to nascent regional and national shared collections.

Close listening and collaboration with clients. Deep experience in college and research library operations and visioning. Thoughtful facilitation.  These are the keys to empowering library staff to devise strategies and solutions customized to local needs, aspirations, cultures, and communities.

Organizational development and re-design – strategic planning, including mission, vision, and values; creating capacity for new directions and high priority goals by re-designing workflows and organizational structures; promoting teamwork, synergies, and esprit de corps in organizations.

Collection management  and curating collective collections (aka shared print) – cooperative collection development; developing, evaluating and managing local collections. Engaging librarians and their communities in developing comprehensive collection management plans for responsible stewardship of legacy collections: managing the transition to hybrid collections; selection for scanning, storage, weeding, collection consolidation; and participation in shared print archives.  For shared print cooperatives, developing governance structures, MOU’s, business models and cooperative collections models for emerging shared print cooperatives; guidance in acting locally while cooperating regionally and nationally. Optimizing collections in high density storage facilities.

Other services – repositioning libraries to play a more vital role in learning and teaching; updating governance and budget models; faculty outreach and liaison; developing library programs customized to the needs of particular communities and cultures; assessing the overall efficacy and culture of libraries in need of rejuvenation and/or suffering from poor morale; space planning for renovations designed to enhance the role of the library in supporting new modes of learning and teaching, and in community building.