Embedded librarianship is an excellent descriptor for defining the changing role of librarians. It’s not just about decentralized service, as Gary Freiburger and Sandra Kramer (2009) discuss in their article titled, “Embedded Librarians: One Library’s Model for Decentralized Service,” but about a change in mindset and the need for librarians to market their expertise. As embedded librarians, we need to become visible experts in proving valuable information. This requires an understanding of our users’ needs and a working knowledge of the quality and availability of resources that can best meet their needs. Whether we are organizing entrepreneurial, writing, or musical services, as embedded librarians we are attempting to identify a need, facilitate a conversation, and inform or solve a problem.
1. How do we become embedded librarians?
2. Do we take up kiosks at the mall?
3. Do we set up a table outside our local Shoprite?
4. Do we send flyers home through the schools or pay for advertising on the back of supermarket receipts alongside $3.00 discount coupons for the local carwash?
Freiburger, G., & Kramer, S. (2009). Embedded librarians: One library’s model for decentralized service. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 97(2), 139–142. Retrieved October 26, 2009, from Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts.
Shumaker, D. (2009). Who let the librarians out? Reference & User Services Quarterly, 48(3), 239–242. Retrieved October 26, 2009, from Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts.