Envisioning the Future of Reference: Trends, Reflections, and Innovations

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Offering a broad overview of consequential changes in the landscape of reference services, this guide also provides practical guidance on how to meet the new challenges they present.

For the past decade, librarians have been lamenting the demise of reference services. Encouraging recent research shows that reference librarians are actually in more demand than ever; however, nearly everything about reference has changed—from technologies, tools, and techniques to models of service.

What are these changes, and how can the profession respond to and prepare for shifting priorities and user needs? In this volume, business librarians Diane Zabel and Lauren Reiter bring together a host of experts to answer these timely questions. Topics range from the education and training of professionals to meeting the needs and wants of employers. Covered are trends in chat reference, research consultations, do-it-yourself reference, tracking trends with user populations, assessment, and data-driven decisions about reference services.

Grounded in the principle that, regardless of the evolutions in service, the user remains at the center of reference, this guide offers readers an exciting look at the future of this important public service.


  • Informs librarians of trends currently affecting the profession and shows how to deal with them
  • Covers a wide array of topics, from those affecting the education of reference services to assessment of services
  • Provides an in-depth look at new models in reference services
Pub year: 2020
Pages: 193
Sku: 9781440867378

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