The University of Toronto iSchool Institute Creative Making in Libraries event in Toronto in July was a terrific learning experience for me. The biggest Ah HA! for me was the link to KM (knowledge management). Everyone has their own definition of KM, but mine is simple — anything that helps people share knowledge and learn — a process, a technology, a space, a technique, a program. Public libraries are now building community expert databases, as organizations with KM programs have been doing for years. Public libraries want to find the experts in their communities to invite them to share their expertise as “creative makers” for a week or month or a special event. The library becomes a platform for another avenue to learning, one that is being embraced by many communities. I am wondering when universities will do this too — build expert databases of their academic communities and showcase those experts in events, programs, or “creative makers” in residence programs. Or perhaps they are, and if so, please let me know!
Every year at Internet Librarian, Information Today sponsors an opening networking and welcome evening which features games and gadgets. This year it will also feature posters of library makerspaces or hackerspaces or creative making programs. We hope that libraries will share their experiences and that we will all learn from each other about making these programs successful in our communities. So if you are planning to attend the Internet Librarian conference and have a makerspace program, please bring a poster, a picture, and your experiences. Look forward to seeing you!
If you were unable to attend the U of T iSchool Institute symposium on Creative Mkaing, or follow the twitter feed, you may want to check out many of the presentations at the conference website.