Supporting Entrepreneurship and Innovation: Volume 40

Cover of Supporting Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Table of contents

(15 chapters)

Prelims

Pages i-vii
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Part 1 Tools for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Abstract

Changing user needs have created new opportunities for libraries, requiring evolving leadership practices that support innovation and rapid change. Design thinking can provide leaders with a concrete process to move toward action. The authors – one an executive administrator at a large, multi-branch public library, the other an academic librarian who leads a small team – share how design thinking has positively influenced their leadership practices. The benefits of implementing this flexible process have included improved user experience, more creative solutions, wise investments, staff empowerment, increased transparency and trust, and employee learning and development. Both leaders experienced these benefits even though they are in different positions on their hierarchical organization charts. The authors propose that implementing design thinking as a leadership practice has a place in the evolving role of libraries and can shift organizational cultures to become more user-centered and embrace innovation. In addition to these benefits, the chapter discusses specific project examples, challenges, and tips for library leaders to successfully implement the process. Design thinking is translatable across library types and throughout private industry. Discussing design thinking as a leadership practice can benefit the profession and communities by giving leaders a common language to use when learning from and sharing with each other in conversations about innovation.

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Supporting entrepreneurship and innovation is a goal for many college campuses. How can your library support those goals? Should you add a makerspace to your library? Or make other costly changes? Library spaces help students think at a higher level, to be creative, innovative, and entrepreneurial. It is rare to have a dedicated spot on campus for thinking. Our libraries are those spaces. Spaces that strongly foster entrepreneurial thinking range from quiet reflective spaces to noisy collaborative spaces. You do not need to do an elaborate study to understand your library spaces. To assess your library spaces as they relate to innovative and entrepreneurial thinking, first take an inventory of your existing library spaces. By examining your existing spaces and the activities in them, you see which of the six essential types of spaces you have and which ones you lack. Once you have done a space assessment, you can see how you can readily add any of the six spaces you lack. A case study of an academic library’s space inventory, assessment, and recommendations helps illustrate the process. You use your space inventory for present and future space planning and to communicate your worth to your stakeholders. Libraries can market unique spaces to students (e.g. “Here are spaces to help you think creatively”), support Creative Campus initiatives, and promote library spaces which foster entrepreneurial thinking.

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Abstract

Mission statements are used for a variety of reasons in organizations, including defining the purpose of the institution, communicating with its stakeholders, shaping its strategic planning process, providing a realistic snapshot of its everyday work, and outlining its future goals or objectives (among many others). For many academic libraries, mission statements are used to showcase resources, services, technologies, and innovations. The purpose of this study is to examine the mission statements of libraries that have won the ACRL Excellence in Libraries Award and analyze whether (or not) the winning libraries used innovation to create a distinct environment that was reflected through their mission statements. The study uses the work of Pearce and David (1987) to determine what elements are included in the mission statements. This chapter utilizes qualitative methodology in the study.

Pearce and David (1987) outline eight elements found in mission statements: target customer; principal products/services; geographic domain; core technologies; survival, growth, or profit; company philosophy; self-concept; and public image. This qualitative study finds that the mission statements of the academic libraries collectively included seven of the elements, omitting survival, growth, or profit universally. Also, the inclusion of these elements allows many of the libraries to create their unique description, unveiling a commitment to innovation.

As an original research study, this chapter adds a unique perspective to the concept of innovation in academic libraries, particularly as it examines the mission statements of award-winning libraries to determine if innovation is found in these foundational documents.

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Academic libraries are increasingly involved in the support of student entrepreneurship on their campuses, both in programming and the curriculum. As the understanding that librarians are a key component for student success as part of the entrepreneurial ecosystem widens, libraries have been adapting and designating various staffing models in response. This chapter includes a literature review of case studies to examine various types of staffing in academic libraries providing support to entrepreneurship and innovation programs. The chapter highlights best practices for each of several staffing models. Potential models range from entrepreneurial outreach done by business librarians, creation of the entrepreneurship librarian position within an institution, how library-owned innovation/incubator spaces are staffed, and other creative models deployed for providing support to the entrepreneurial student.

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This chapter reports the results of a survey deployed to 113 of the 124 Association of Research Libraries (ARL) members on the current role makerspaces play in academic libraries. Nearly one-quarter of ARL institutions (n = 26; 23%) indicated they have a makerspace. This research analyzes ARL institutions who have established makerspaces within their physical library spaces. This chapter describes the physical aspects of makerspaces, programs and marketing, and demographic details (Bagley, 2014). According to the respondents, what constitutes a makerspace depends on the patrons ARL institutions serve.

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University libraries are not only crossroads of scholarly communities but are also now connecting business proprietors to places, institutions, and resources that support business growth. Therefore, through creating new formal and informal partnerships, university libraries can create friendly environments where external users like small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can work together to access and use research and innovation (R&I) information for the sustenance and growth of their business ventures. Vibrant and reengineered university library partnership programs can go a long way in engaging national, regional, and international business growth activities.

This chapter reports on a study carried out on Ugandan university libraries and how they can serve SMEs with their university’s research output. The purpose of the study was to investigate the need for restructuring university library partnerships in order to serve SMEs better through their R&I information services. The study used an exploratory research design and used questionnaires and interviews to collect data. This chapter reports on available formal and informal innovative university libraries’ partnerships with different organizational levels of SMEs; the communication and organizational structures between university libraries and SMEs; shared visions, missions, standards, and policies of Ugandan university libraries and SMEs; and the roles and collaborations with professional library bodies such as the Consortium of Ugandan University Libraries (CUUL), Uganda Library and Information Association (ULIA), and the International Association of Technological University Libraries (IATUL), among others.

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To identify change in the understanding of entrepreneurship in libraries through content analysis of presentations that were a part of the Conference for Entrepreneurial Librarians from 2009 through 2016. This chapter will discuss key topics and findings related to libraries and entrepreneurship.

Presentations delivered at the conference were categorized into topics and were tracked to uncover perceptions of what is entrepreneurial in libraries and how the importance of certain issues has changed over time. This chapter summarizes the results of that evaluation and of a survey of attendees after the conferences ended.

Entrepreneurship in libraries in 2009 was more heavily linked to making money. Over time, however, the term “entrepreneurial” became more conceptually associated with finding value, reaching out to new constituencies, and taking risks. There is a definite distinction as to the definition of “entrepreneurial” between public libraries (who consider community outreach to be a part of their core mission) and academic libraries (who often see this as an entrepreneurial enterprise). The finding that librarians attended the conference to “find change agents” indicates a yearning to identify with others in the field who are likewise seeking ways to be entrepreneurial.

The evaluation of the status of “entrepreneurship in libraries” has never before been undertaken by evaluating the presentations of the practitioners in a conference setting. Since the practitioners are determining what is most valuable to discuss with others in the field, this provides some insight into the status of entrepreneurship in the field.

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Part 3 Case Studies of Libraries Supporting Entrepreneurship and Innovation

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This chapter describes how a strategic change in the mission of the library led to the collaborative development of library services to meet the needs for innovation and creative spaces in a large urban public university. Several years ago, the Oviatt Library at California State University, Northridge, adopted a new vision that included supporting and encouraging creativity and innovation on campus. In this chapter, the authors will describe three ways in which this new strategic perspective has changed the nature of our library (and libraries in general). First, the authors will share the results of a survey of business librarians, which reveals the changing attitudes of librarians toward entrepreneurship and innovation in libraries. Second, the authors will describe the Creative Media Studio, housed in the Oviatt Library’s Learning Commons, which was created in 2014 as a space to create music, use high-end video editing tools, and fabricate three-dimensional objects with 3D printers. Third, the authors will discuss a recent campus-wide task force, chaired by the Library Dean, which recommends the construction of a large makerspace in the heart of the Oviatt Library, collaborating not only with the College of Business but also with the College of Engineering, the College of Arts, Media and Communication, and the new University Incubator. This chapter will outline how library personnel have partnered with faculty, staff, and administration to bridge gaps in curriculum and provide instruction in multimedia creation, including licensing and copyright, for students involved in innovative activities and entrepreneurial ventures. The chapter will also describe the library’s role in the evolution of the Creative Media Studio, the development of the new campus makerspace, and the ways in which librarians are evolving from traditional roles to more entrepreneurial responsibilities. Finally, the authors will discuss best practices in developing partnerships for new innovative and creative spaces and services by illustrating the challenges and successes in sustaining partnerships with internal and external stakeholders.

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What sets health sciences librarians apart from other academic librarians when it comes to partnering with health-focused innovators? Do health-related innovators have different information needs or space requirements? This chapter illustrates some of the major issues and topics health sciences librarians consider as they offer information services to entrepreneurs and innovators. Health sciences innovators must be aware of relevant policies and laws such as HIPAA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. They also need to meet federal safety regulations required by the Food and Drug Administration; moreover, device materials must be biocompatible. Those developing therapeutic games and apps in this arena need to ensure their products are supported by current literature and scientific evidence. In many cases, these new technologies require clinical trials and testing to ensure their safety and efficacy. Health sciences librarians guide innovators to relevant resources, knowledge, and experts on these and other topics. This navigator role is extremely valuable to students, who may not understand the healthcare landscape and its processes. Additionally, librarians assist innovators with identifying dissemination venues for their scholarly output. They provide instruction and guidance on how to write and tailor conference proposals to meet specific professional association criteria. A retired health sciences library director shares her experiences. Tips and lessons learned are highlighted so others may gain an understanding of the unique information needs of health innovators.

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Part 4 Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Library Education

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Library and Information Studies (LIS) education is changing to meet the needs of a dynamic, information-seeking public by infusing new skills development into the education process. This includes new ways to teach from a theoretical point of view in the classroom, new partnerships and expectations, and learning from practitioners through practicums, internships, and volunteering. Embracing innovation and entrepreneurship within the education framework for library and information science education will ensure a profession that can change and be sustainable into the future.

Examples and active programs from field literature are provided to make the case for the need to include entrepreneurial skill development into the LIS curriculum and program development.

This chapter will discuss the value of applying or including an entrepreneurial education component into LIS programs. Changes to practicum experiences can also help students engage more broadly and redefine how to provide library resources and services in an uncertain future. The value to the student will also be examined. Whether as part of a standard program or as part of a professional development initiative, students or individuals obtaining competencies and skills related to risk-taking, building diverse relationships, and becoming comfortable with ambiguity will increase their chances for a broader range of employment.

The work in this chapter has been developed and shared in pieces at various presentations and venues but never collected and documented as a single work, but for this chapter.

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This chapter describes the use of project-based learning to foster an enterprising, innovative attitude among students enrolled at the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM) in the context of the School of Documentation Sciences from the 2013–2014 academic year to the present.

This experiment is based on the experiential intersection of two domains: firstly, innovation and entrepreneurship, in order to drive both entrepreneurship for self-employment and also intrapreneurship in libraries or documentation institutions; secondly, the application of project management methods in library and information science (LIS), using the teaching technique known as project-based learning (PBL).

Over this period of four academic years, 159 students have taken part and have created 42 projects. A trend is seen in the development of intrapreneurship projects (i.e., projects contextualized within preexisting organizations are 79% of total).

The progression of this experiment in the fostering of entrepreneurship and innovation in LIS in Spain has been based on a dynamic in which the application of theoretical bases to a real, practical context has enabled a better exploitation and understanding of the of the contents taught; developing projects has given LIS students experience that makes them more employable.

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About the Authors

Pages 203-208
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Index

Pages 209-219
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Cover of Supporting Entrepreneurship and Innovation
DOI
10.1108/S0732-0671201940
Publication date
2019-04-29
Book series
Advances in Library Administration and Organization
Editors
Series copyright holder
Emerald Publishing Limited
ISBN
978-1-78973-206-1
Book series ISSN
0732-0671