I – Robot, to help You – Librarian

CHAKAROVA, Juja and TRABERT, Johannes (2019) I – Robot, to help You – Librarian. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2019 - Athens, Greece - Libraries: dialogue for change in Session S08 - Information Technology. In: Robots in libraries: challenge or opportunity?, 21-22 August 2019, Wildau, Germany.

Bookmark or cite this item: https://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/2699
Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.


I – Robot, to help You – Librarian

Modern librarians are called to become information and knowledge managers, however they are also requested to deal with a lot of routine tasks, like labeling, shelving, doing inventory. Shouldn’t we delegate these repetitive assignments to robots and save our time for more important missions? Will many of our tasks be taken by ‘increasingly capable machines’, as predicted by prof. Richard Susskind in his book “The Future of the Professions”? Since the 1980s we witnessed libraries to continuously ceding their traditional territories. Machine-readable catalogues replaced the card catalogues in the 80s, the Internet enabled the online public access catalogue (OPAC) in the 90s, while the RFID allowed in the 2000s borrowing, returning and sorting library items even in the absence of a librarian. Libraries embrace technology to offer better, faster and continuous services to their users. The Library of the Max Planck Institute (MPI) Luxembourg for Procedural Law explores the present and future use of robots in libraries. In 2016 the Library tested the Tory robot, MetraLabs Germany, to make an inventory. In only one hour the RFID tags of 35,000 books were read by Tory with an accuracy of 99,11%. The methodology and results will be presented, followed by a live demonstration of the new Tory model. The paper discusses new areas of robot implementation in libraries. In addition, the results of the ‘Robots in Libraries’ survey 2018-2019 will be discussed. The survey was conducted in 2018 in big university and public libraries in 9 European countries and continued in 2019 in 9 Asian countries. It gives a snapshot of the current robot implementation, the future expectations and concerns of the librarians. With the introduction of robots, library staff will be relieved of certain repetitive tasks and as a result will have more time to get to know their users and to devote themselves to service-oriented work.

FOR IFLA HQ (login required)

Edit item Edit item