12 Association of Research Libraries Research Library Issues 303 2022 Library as Place Kornelia Tancheva, University of Pittsburgh Library System In October 2021, about a year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, which, among other things, altered the way we interact in and with public and communal spaces, the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) held its annual meeting called “The Big Pivot Continues.” Virtually, for the second year in a row. It doesn’t take too much imagination to deduce that the pandemic and its consequences loomed large in all of the programming and the conversations among research library deans and directors. One of the overarching themes in the program was that of “Library as Place,” highlighted in the October 6 panel, moderated by Joan Lippincott, the associate executive director emerita of the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI). The panel featured Justin Garrett Moore, the inaugural program officer for the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s Humanities in Place initiative Shrey Majmudar, chief of staff and former VP of Academic Affairs, Duke Student Government, and a past member of the Duke Library Council and myself, representing the perspective of an ARL university librarian whose institution is in the midst of a multiyear, multimillion-dollar complete renovation of the central library on the Pittsburgh campus, Hillman Library. In what follows, I will summarize the points each of the speakers made (with apologies to my fellow panelists in case I am misinterpreting some of their points) and offer some additional thoughts about the future of the library as place. Prior to assuming his current position, Justin Garrett Moore, whose background is in urban design and architecture, had been the Executive Director of the City of New York Public Design Commission, and as such, he focused on the ways public library spaces allow us to experience the connections between learning, understanding, and civic
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