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Book Review

Voichița Dragomir – Biblioteca 2.0: Apomediator al cunoașterii, comunicării și cooperării [Library 2.0: Mediator of Knowledge, Communication, and Cooperation], București, Editura Tritonic Books, 2022.


The book  Biblioteca 2.0  Apomediator al cunoașterii, comunicării și cooperării [Library 2.0: Mediator of Knowledge, Communication, and Cooperation] has its origins in the PhD thesis of Mrs. Voichița Dragomir, a well-known name in the field of information science and documentation in Romania, with a solid professional culture, rich experience, and accomplishments in the world of academic libraries in our country. Engineer by background, Mrs. Voichița Dragomir has a vast expertise in automation of academic libraries and library management, being a former deputy director of BCU Bucharest, and currently the director of SNSPA Library.

Mrs. Voichița Dragomir brings to the forefront a new and complex concept with implications on the support services for education and research available in online environment. This is the Library 2.0 concept launched in 2005 by Michael Casey in order to define the library model based on Web 2.0 technologies. We can say that Library 2.0 was born in the context of the transformations that are taking place in the info-documentary space in relation to the Internet area.

Basically, as the author points in the Introduction of the book, the concept of Library 2.0 refers to a subset of 2.0 resources, tools, and services of the contemporary library. The subset is centred on the information consumer in the sense of according it the status of an active prosumer, with the ability to produce and consume content, to influence  the content made available by the library, to use, reuse, to insert tags, comments, to communicate freely and collaborate through social networks, to express his opinion about the resources, services and infrastructure of the library, and to share information (Dragomir, V., 2022, p.17).

In her approach, the author started from an extensive literature review which allowed her to make an analysis over a significant period of time of the Library 2.0 issue, to present theories, case studies, to make comparisons, analyses that allow the formulation of a set of strategic directions for the development of Library 2.0. The book harmoniously combines theoretical and practical aspects, and the author demonstrates a thorough knowledge of the challenges of the information and knowledge society and the implications for libraries. Rigorous in structuring and presenting the information, the author has chosen to organize the content of the work in two main chapters, each of them with sub-chapters and graphic supports such as tables, figures, diagrams, print-screens that consolidate the theoretical approach and present the information more suggestively. At the end of the work, we find a rich bibliography of Romanian and foreign information resources, electronic information and documentation resources and appendices.

The first chapter called Library 2.0 [Library 2.0] is dedicated to the library in contemporary society and it is focuses on the milestones of the technological and info-documentary evolution in the new information age and the paradigm in which Library 2.0 fits. Also, in the first chapter, the author defines the concepts of library-user 2.0 and librarian 2.0, shows their competencies and skills, and draws a particular attention to an analyse of skills of the librarian 2.0 at the beginning of the 21st century in relation to the skills of the hybrid librarian or librarian 1.0. Library 2.0 terminology, the purpose, role, and objectives of Library 2.0, models and theories of Library 2.0 in the literature, Web 2.0 technologies in Library 2.0, architecture and standards, data sharing protocols on the Internet are topics amply presented and supported with references in the specialized scientific literature.

As a logical continuation of what has already been presented, the author brings up the subject of library service platforms, with concrete examples and a study on the information/re-informatization of libraries at international level made by M. Breeding in 2018 (Dragomir, V., 2022, p.99). Wide sub-chapters are dedicated to resources and technology related to the concept of Library 2.0 (new generation library catalogue, traditional OPAC versus web, web-scale information discovery services, collective catalogues, union catalogues, institutional repositories, institutional digital platforms). The entire theoretical approach is based on  comparative analyses, graphic images, case studies.

The second chapter of the book, Studiu de caz – Cât de pregătite sunt bibliotecile românești pentru a face față provocărilor spațiului web 2.0?! [Case Study – How prepared are Romanian libraries to face the challenges of the web 2.0 space?!], is a research carried out with the aim of evaluating the degree to which Romanian libraries are prepared to respond to the current requirements of the Web 2.0 space and of internet users in search of information and knowledge. (Dragomir, V., 2022, p.350). The case study presented concerns 100 Romanian librarians (academic and public libraries) and took place between 2015-2018.

In her case study, the author started from similar studies in the specialized literature and focused on the following aspects: identifying the types of Web 2.0 technologies implemented in Romanian libraries, establishing the rate of adoption of Web 2.0 tools in university libraries and public libraries, the degree of use of these technologies by the beneficiaries of library services. Also, in the second chapter of the book are analysed and presented the institutional repositories/digital platforms managed by academic libraries, as well as those managed by public libraries, the integrated library systems implemented in both types of libraries, the degree of access and use of a www site, the evaluation of www sites of Romanian libraries. All the information presented are accompanied by concrete examples, data and analysis that highlight the opening of the Romanian libraries to the adaptation of Web 2.0 technologies to improve the quality of the services offered.

The book is a large work, containing 451 pages, and the information presented reflects scientific rigor. Biblioteca 2.0:  Apomediator al cunoașterii, comunicării și cooperării  [Library 2.0: mediator of knowledge, communication, and cooperation] is an important source of information for all those involved in librarianship and information science.


About the Author

Florentina Carmen Predescu

ORCID ID: 0009-0000-6431-3741

Doctoral School of the Faculty of Letters, Library and Information Science Program, University of Bucharest, Romania






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