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Creative Commons License
Designing Better Libraries by steven j bell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Archive for category Service Design

Staff Expertise Makes A Difference

If there was one thing you wish everyone in your community knew about the library that you believed they needed to know – and didn’t – what would that be? That you had hundreds of thousands or even millions of books from which to choose? That you had private study rooms and seven different types […]






Librarians Still Matter In a Self-Serve World

Let’s face it. Community members can manage their research and a host of other library chores pretty well in the library web environment without the need of intervention from library personnel. I’m a fan of promoting self-service in libraries. Many, not all, community members prefer self-service options. In a world of ATM machines, airport check-in […]






Convenience Trumps Qual..Wait…Library Experiences Should Transcend Fast Food

When Ranganathan stated his fourth law of library science, “Save the Time of the Reader” he probably did not intend for us to create a library experience that operates under the same principles as a fast food restaurant – whose fourth law just happens to be “Save the Time of the Eater”. What Ranganathan most […]






Recent User Experience: Greeters – NO / Preemptive Support – YES

Librarians can learn from reflecting on their own experiences as users – both the good and the bad. Taking time to pay attention to our personal experiences encourages us to think about the experience provided in our own libraries. During a few of my own recent service encounters I observed a practice that makes good […]






Punishing Everyone For A Single Transgression

Does something like this ever happen in your library? A single-parent student has no choice but to bring a toddler son or daughter to the library. It’s a weekend, and the student has an assignment due on Monday. College libraries can be a little boring for the young, so the child does a bit of […]