Thursday, August 18, 2005

IFLA 2005, Oslo: Day 7 (part 2)

Day 7: 18 Aug 05. Last library visit on the last day of the IFLA conference.

Bærum Public Library (pronounced as "Bar-room") was a 15min ride by bus from the conference venue (this was the main library we visited, if I got my facts right). About 50 people were invited for a visit by their Library Director, Torny Kjekstad.
Bærum PL

They have this big metal piece shaped like a book at the drive way. Cool or what? :)

We were told that the library has been concerned with cost reduction measures for the past year. Part of the cost-reduction measures included the promotion of self-help services like online reservations and using self-service kiosks. They have strong political support and an active community volunteer group. I was surprised to learn that library-volunteerism was a new concept in Norway.

This was the cafe area, which separated the library reading/ collection area and the auditorium. It was what you'd see when you step into the main entrance.

This was the entrance to the library proper.

A view of the Children section...
children area

... where they have this really quirky "Pacifier Tree"! It's a "tree" made up of pacifiers -- the kind for babies. Parents could exchange the pacifiers for some library gifts (as an introduction to library membership, apparently) and the pacifiers -- washed of course -- would be hung on the tree.
pacifier tree

I wonder if such an exchange scheme would work to wean smokers off cigarettes. Hmm...

They have one self-checkout machine.

We were also told that Bærum Public Library topped the statistics for book borrowing & also reading skills in Norway. Now that's a positive correlation between public lending services and reading skills!

They highlighted a Summer Reading programme, where completion of a reading book would entitle the participants to a library party (they had to hold four such parties recently because of its popularity).

Their library also organised reading groups for the mentally handicapped. They had to give up their book delivery service to the elderly because of cost-cuts though.

This library we visited was a single-floor building.
main aisle

I found these quite interesting: Study cubicles.
study cubicles
study cubicles2

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  1. If I remember correctly, they used to have study cubicles in the library at Ngee Ann Polytechnic too.

  2. Well...NP Library still does have study carrels and now instead of study cubicles for individuals, there are 38 project rooms. Project rooms can sit between 4 and 10 pple depending on which one you book.


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