New Books on Embedded Librarianship


In recent weeks, I’ve learned of two new books on embedded librarianship. I haven’t read them yet, but I plan to do so.

The first is Developing Community-Led Public Libraries, by John Pateman and Ken Williment ( ) In categorizing it as embedded librarianship, I’m probably inferring a relationship the authors didn’t intend. They don’t use the word “embedded” in any of the snippets I’ve read so far. Still, their emphasis on relationships and on partnering with members of the community link up well with the core principles of embedded librarianship. In their introduction, Pateman and Williment write, “Since a community-led approach is based upon the development of relationships with individuals from various communities, by initially focusing on a geographical community or specific community of interest (for example, seniors, people with disabilities, etc.), it provides a library system with a viable and practical introduction to using community-led services.” and “Once needs have been identified and prioritized they can be met by using a community development approach. This is very different from an outreach approach which simply takes library services (which have been designed, planned, delivered and evaluated by library staff) out of the library and into community settings. A community development approach is based on creating meaningful and sustained relationships with local communities, while acknowledging that the community is the expert on its members’ own needs. Library staff become listeners rather than tellers, and staff and community co-produce library services.”

The second is Embedding Librarianship in Learning Management Systems:  A How-To-Do-It Manual for Librarians, by Beth Tumbleson and John Burke ( ) The authors draw on their own experience as academic librarians, as well as a survey of embedded academic librarians. Starting from the premise that information literacy instruction works best when integrated (or embedded) with actual research problems.

I’m excited to see both of these additions to the literature, and look forward to reading them.



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