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August 17 , 2007

Risky Business: Taking and Managing Risks in Library Services for Teens


Do we add that edgy urban novel to our teen collection? Should we initiate social networking? What about abandoning Dewey for a bookstore arrangement? Change is risky business, but librarians must be prepared to initiate change to best serve teens. YA service innovators Linda W. Braun, Hillias J. Martin, and Connie Urquhart explain how to be smart about taking risks without shying away from them. They offer concrete advice for Laying the groundwork for change in key areas such as collection building and programming Including technology components as part of traditional services, such as booktalks, information literacy instruction, and book discussion groups Effectively gaining support from administrators and colleagues A resource list highlights articles and websites about risk in libraries, risk management, and teens and risk taking. In addition, appendixes offer YALSA’s competencies for serving youth and YALSA’s white papers, which discuss the importance of teen literature, the need to include young adult services in library school curricula, and the need for dedicated space and teen services staff in public libraries. Real-world examples of risky change in action from librarians and authors of YA lit enrich this exploration of a topic rarely discussed in depth, but central to YA services in school and public libraries today.
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