Past Taiga Meetings

Taiga 12Fundraising for 21st-century Academic Libraries: Tips and Strategies for Future Leaders, was held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, November 7, 2016 (following DLF Forum). See Kelly Miller’s post about the event.

Taiga 11 was held on October 29, 2015, in Vancouver, British Columbia, in conjunction with the DLF Forum. Our topic for the day was “Crossing the Table: Employee Relations Issues in Libraries.” Speakers included Gwen Bird, , Dean of Library Services and University Librarian, Simon Fraser University, and Jennifer Vinopal, Librarian for Digital Scholarship Initiatives, New York University. We also hosted lightning talks and group discussions where participants shared their own employee relations experiences and tips.

Taiga 9 was held on November 7, 2013 in Austin, Texas, in conjunction with the DLF Fall Forum. Our topic for the day was Diversity in Academic Libraries.  Keynote speaker, Professor Christine Williams of University of Texas at Austin, gave a talk highlighting the limitations of corporate diversity policies. We also featured a panel discussion on library culture/s, silencing, and microaggressions. We closed the day with presentations from ALA President-Elect, Courtney Young, and ARL director of Diversity and Leadership Programs, Mark Puente.   We continue to talk about diversity, and invite you to join the conversation.

Taiga 8 was held on Saturday November 3, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. Once again Taiga held its meeting in conjunction with the DLF Fall Forum.

The Taiga community of AULs and ADs applied a case study approach using framing analysis to engage the issues posed by the challenging report, Redefining the Academic Library (summary available).

Rick Anderson, Interim Dean of the J. Willard Marriott Library of the University of Utah set the stage by giving an introduction and context to the report for which he was an adviser.  We then took a deep dive into some of the major issues confronting academic and research library leaders:  the role of collection size in determining quality, the use of success metrics, traditional vs. emerging services, evolving user demands, repurposing library space, and re-skilling and re-deploying our human resources. View the case study approach slide deck from the meeting.

Taiga 7 was held on Wednesday November 2, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland and was highlighted by a keynote by Bob Wolven of Columbia University.

Taiga 6 was held on Monday  November 1, 2010 in Palo Alto, Calfornia and focused on a six-month process of developing a new round of provocative statements for 2011 (Taiga Forum Provocative Statements 2011). Taiga 6 also featured a keynote by Kristine Shannon on agile methodologies for management as well as a joint luncheon with the DLF Project Managers Round Table.

Taiga 5 was held on January 15, 2010 in Boston, Massachusetts, and considered issues of cloud computing for libraries. Taiga addressed the theme “Where in the cloud is my research library?” The forum featured a series of “Lightning Talks” and roundtable discussions on subjects related to this theme.

Taiga 4 was held on January 22, 2009 in Denver, Colorado and sought to address themes related to Human Resources, including organizational change, professional identity, and personal commitment. The morning featured a series of 10 “Lightning Rounds” on provocative statements related to this theme. One goal of the meeting was to update and adapt Taiga 2006 Provocative Statements to better represent the challenges we face in 2009. Updated statements would be published to the broader academic library world following the forum. To this end, attendees engaged in meaningful discussions throughout the day-long event. Taiga 4 yielded the Taiga 4 Provocative Statements.

Taiga 3 was held in Philadelphia in January 2008 and featured David Weinberger, author of the controversial and intriguing book “Everything is Miscellaneous” as the keynote speaker. Afternoon discussions again used a modified form of “Open Space” an exciting and challenging technique for structuring group dialogue.

Taiga 2 was held in Seattle in January 2007, and made use of the “Open Space” model to facilitate the creation of a user-driven agenda that came together around shared visions of the challenges and opportunities facing Associate/Assistant University Librarians in the contemporary academic library environment. From Taiga 2 came the call to expand the Taiga discussion in ways that take advantage of information technology, social computing, and opportunities for creating greater network effects for change leadership in libraries.

The Inaugural Taiga Forum (“Shifting Boundaries”) was held in Chicago in March 2006, and brought together Associate/Assistant University Librarians from large institutions across the country for the first time in a way that allowed leaders from across the spectrum of professional library work to share ideas about using cross-functional vision in making internal organizational structures more flexible, agile, and effective. They were challenged to move beyond the borders and transcend the traditional library organization.

Fifteen Provocative Statements inspired the participants of this first Taiga Forum and were subsequently disseminated throughout the industry. These statements stimulated meaningful dialogue in scores of organizations and energized the strategic planning process for many.

About “Gentle Disturbances”

The title of our new blog, “Gentle Disturbances”, is a tribute and a reference to the husband and wife artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude. Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s art consists of vast, temporary outdoor installations, such as the wrapping of the Reichstag in Berlin, the 24-mile Running Fence in Sonoma and Marin counties in California, and The Gates in New York City's Central Park. Christo has asserted that their art creates “gentle disturbances," designed to challenge traditional perceptions of the spaces and landscapes they inhabit. By encouraging viewers to see familiar landscapes in new ways, their art disrupts assumptions about permanence, ownership, and categorization.

While we claim none of the artistic or political impact of Christo and Jeanne-Claude, we hope that this blog and its many contributors will challenge us all to look at the landscape of academic libraries and higher education in new ways. We aspire to “gentle disturbances” of the kind that will lead to productive conversations and creative approaches to our common challenges.