“People, Culture and 21st Century Libraries” was the theme of several presentations Dr. Gary Marchionini, SILS dean and Cary C. Boshamer Distinguished Professor, delivered during his travels to India this spring semester. Marchionini was the opening keynote speaker at the International Conference on Digital Libraries and Knowledge Management hosted by the Management Development Institute (MDI) in Gurgaon, a city outside of Delhi, where he presented “The Transformation of Libraries as Institutions.” In addition to attending conference sessions on a variety of topics, he also participated on the closing panel that discussed sustainability and knowledge organization.
While in India, Marchionini visited and lectured at the Documentation Research and Training Centre (DRTC), which was founded by Dr. Shiyali Ramamrita Ranganathan, long considered India’s father of information and library science. The DRTC admits only ten students into the program each year and is one of the best educational institutions to get an information science degree in India. According to the DRTC Web site, “DRTC has grown into a centre of higher learning, today it stands as an advocacy centre for research and development of libraries.”
Marchionini was the invited speaker for the prestigious Ranganathan Memorial Lectures in Bangalore and presented the first of his lectures on participatory libraries with emphasis on the proflection of identity in cyberspace, and another lecture titled, “Humans as Information Creators, Collectors, Consumers and Communicators.” He then traveled to Mysore to visit the International School of Information Management at the University of Mysore where he provided a lecture on Open Video to a group of approximately 80 students. He returned to Bangalore where he presented the final Ranganathan lecture, which was about cyberidentity and lifetime library segments.
“I was especially pleased that Professor Neelameghan and Professor Kamaruddin (both Ranganathan students and active in their retirement) were enthusiastic about the presentation,” said Marchionini. “They immediately understood the implications for libraries to take the lead on personal digital memory issues.”