A place to make, hack, and learn: makerspaces in Australian public libraries

Slatter, Diane & Howard, Zaana (2013) A place to make, hack, and learn: makerspaces in Australian public libraries. The Australian Library Journal, 62(4), pp. 272-284.

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Abstract

Content-creation spaces, or ‘makerspaces’, are an emerging phenomenon in public libraries worldwide. This study investigated the current state of makerspaces in Australian public libraries. Qualitative interviews with three information professionals formed the data collection. Thematic analysis of interviews addressed two research questions: What are the issues and challenges of creating makerspaces within Australian public libraries? How can they be addressed? Findings revealed the substantive benefits of these spaces, including enhanced community engagement, development of a new form of library as ‘third place’, and transforming the library's image from that of a place where works are consumed to that of a place where works are created. Additionally the study highlighted significant challenges to creating these spaces, including budgetary constraints, resistance to change within organisations and proving the relevance of such spaces within a library context. The study provides suggestions for overcoming these obstacles and provides areas for further research in the area, including larger studies across a broader geographic area and further investigation and follow-up into upcoming programs within existing makerspaces.

Impact and interest:

10 citations in Scopus
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5 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 73071
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Makerspaces, Public Libraries, Content Creation,, Fabrication, Library Spaces, Community Engagement, Library Innovation, hacker spaces
DOI: 10.1080/00049670.2013.853335
ISSN: 2201-4276
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700) > Library and Information Studies not elsewhere classified (080799)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Division of Technology, Information and Learning Support
Copyright Owner: Taylor & Francis
Deposited On: 25 Jun 2014 01:09
Last Modified: 26 Jun 2014 11:52

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