The Next Library Leadership: Attributes of Academic and Public Library Directors / Edition 1

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This much needed work addresses a topic of increasing importance and urgency: the shortage of individuals attracted to professional careers in librarianship, and the subsequent consequences for leadership positions, particularly library directorship. Through extensive interviews and a thorough review of the existing literature, the authors-all highly respected for their exceptional leadership and contributions to library science-assess what constitutes effective leadership and identify the traits needed by the next generation of academic and public library directors.

The authors argue that library directors must be both managers and leaders, and that LIS students and graduates need appropriate support in seeking out upper level positions and exercising leadership. They present tools for assessing leadership and suggest strategies that individuals can use to prepare themselves for leadership positions and the challenges that lie ahead. A detailed bibliography completes the work. An important contribution to the field of library and information science, this eye-opening study is essential reading for anyone in the profession.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Hernon (GSLIS, Simmons Coll.; An Action Plan for Outcomes Assessment in Your Library) and coauthors Ronald R. Powell (LIS, Wayne State Univ.; Basic Research Methods for Librarians) and Arthur P. Young (Northern Illinois Univ. Libs.; coauthor, Academic Libraries: Research Perspectives) work in academia, and their heavily documented work reflects this academic background in both research and presentation. Concerned about the shortage of new librarians and the subsequent shrinkage of a pool of potential library leaders, the authors take a broad sweep at what constitutes leadership qualities. By conducting extensive interviews, reviewing and citing the literature, and applying the old Delphi process of forecasting, they assess and condense these traits into a manageable one-stop shopping list that could be used by those already serving as library directors for self-evaluation, by those looking to hire such leaders, or by those who might choose this career path. After ascertaining core leadership qualities, the authors move on to providing guidelines as to how to acquire them. The last chapter brings in Jeffrey Christian's (a well-known headhunter) "formula five of exceptional leadership": honesty and integrity, intellectual firepower, energy and passion, leadership, and humility. Ironically, only one of Christian's leadership traits made it into prominence in either the Delphi lists or interviews. While the profession does need to identify and recruit individuals committed to the long haul and nurture those who have leadership potential, it cannot do so just through practical experience or continuing education or lists of qualities/attributes. That having been said, for what this work sets out to do, it succeeds. For academic professional reading collections and library schools.--B. Susan Brown, Pamunkey Regional Lib., VA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781563089923
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/30/2003
  • Series: Library and Information Science Text Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.44 (d)

Meet the Author

PETER HERNON is Professor, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, Simmons College, Boston, Editor in Chief of Journal of Academic Librarianship, Founding Editor of Government Information Quarterly, Co-Editor of Library & Information Science Research, and an internationally acclaimed author of numerous books in the area of government information.

RONALD R. POWELL is Professor, Library and Information Science Program, Wayne State University, and author of the popular textbook Basic Research Methods in Librarianship, soon to be in its fourth edition.

ARTHUR P. YOUNG is Dean of University Libraries, Northern Illinois University, editor of Beta Phi Mu Monographs, former editor of ACRL Publications in Librarianship, and the author of many books.

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Table of Contents


A Shortage of Librarians

Qualities Expected of Library Directors: A Review of the Literature

Qualities for ARL Directors

Qualities for ACRL Directors

Qualities for Public Library Directors

Analysis and Comparison of Qualities

Leadership Assessment

Acquiring the Qualities

Hunting Heads and Final Reflections


About the Authors

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