The following is in excerpt provided to attendees of the 2011 Future Search Conference.
The increasing role of technology and electronically accessible materials has caused many to question the role of the traditional library. With stacks of books, desks and chairs, held within a single physical space, the traditional library offers a place for individuals to quietly read and process information.
Libraries, however, are no longer simply places to house books and offer quiet spaces to read, they are vibrant centers for learning where individuals can exercise their minds to build new knowledge from the information they discover. Libraries exist within the walls of buildings and online. They organize efficient and convenient access to information through managing shared use of books and journals as well as through licensing electronic resources. Libraries capture and preserve human memory and foster creation of new knowledge. In the academy, they are discipline neutral and supportive of all fields of inquiry, ether as learning coaches for the novice student or as a partner to scholars and teachers to strengthen research, instruction and scholarly communications.