32 Association of Research Libraries Research Library Issues 291 2017 Creating a Holistic Fabric of Services and Collections from the Inside Out: Exploring Convergences of Liaison and Special Collections Librarianship Kristen Totleben, Modern Languages and Cultures Librarian, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester Jessica Lacher-Feldman, Assistant Dean of Rare Books and Special Collections, and the Joseph N. Lambert and Harold B. Schleifer Director of Rare Books, Special Collections and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester Introduction The work of liaison librarians and special collections librarians could more closely mirror and support the scholarship process if the expertise of both specializations are holistically considered and, when relevant, cooperatively combined. Viewing and integrating collections and services with this approach includes providing a “full spectrum of information available to scholars and students and the technological capabilities, rights of use, and services necessary for full utilization of these resources. The holistic framework’s raison d’être is knowledge creation—from inspiration to information, to analysis, synthesis and dissemination.”1 It is well known that, in the 21st-century academic library, there is a shift from being “collections-centered” to “learning-centered.” By assisting users with the production of scholarly work, and by outwardly focusing library work toward more direct engagement with users, together, special collections and liaisons in academic libraries advance in their roles as facilitators, conduits, and partners in research. Outcomes stemming from these interactions increase the likelihood of building even more connections with users, further supporting their research and teaching. This article considers benefits, advantages, and an overarching purpose of academic liaison librarians and special collections librarians working integratively to affirm and advance the libraries’ role in the university community. The piece also proposes ways in which libraries can enact
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