Read around the clock

There’s a rather charming item on the BBC website this week about the emergence of the 24-hour university library – including the intriguing piece of trivia that Reading University’s library opened in the same month as Terence Conran’s first Habitat store.

My institution offers 24/7 opening at the main university library in the immediate run-up to exams.  I usually stress that the most important part of the 24/7 library is the availability of electronic resources – although those include an online catalogue.  So, if you’re interested in Russ Ackoff’s ideas on knowledge, and want to refer back to his original writing which is only available on paper, you can establish from home whether the paper item is in stock, and then come in to collect it.

But the BBC piece about the library in Reading is also a salutary reminder that a library isn’t just about its contents, and that the need for a congenial place to study is as relevant as it every has been


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