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The will to activate library users and the making of citizens : How different rationalities influence the notion of participation in a library context

Engström, Lisa LU and Olsson Dahlquist, Lisa LU (2020) In Library Quarterly 90(3). p.314-331
Abstract
This article explores how the notion of participation informs policy documents in a public library context. Library users are expected to manage on their own, to a large extent, as society calls for self-governing, active subjects who are willing to participate. To explore this notion of participation, we utilize the concept of problematization and analyze policy documents regarding the public libraries of Copenhagen, Denmark, and Malmö, Sweden. Although all of the documents are concerned with participation and user involvement, they have different points of departure and call upon different rationalities. Whereas the outlined policies of the Malmö libraries problematize social inclusion, the Copenhagen libraries primarily problematize... (More)
This article explores how the notion of participation informs policy documents in a public library context. Library users are expected to manage on their own, to a large extent, as society calls for self-governing, active subjects who are willing to participate. To explore this notion of participation, we utilize the concept of problematization and analyze policy documents regarding the public libraries of Copenhagen, Denmark, and Malmö, Sweden. Although all of the documents are concerned with participation and user involvement, they have different points of departure and call upon different rationalities. Whereas the outlined policies of the Malmö libraries problematize social inclusion, the Copenhagen libraries primarily problematize inefficiency. Despite this contrast, increased participation seems to be the proposed solution in the policy documents of both cities. An analysis of these documents shows the complex and sometimes contradictory meaning of the concept of participation, depending on which rationality is put into play. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
In this paper, we explore how the notion of participation informs policy documents in a public library context. Today, library users to a large extent are expected to manage on their own and society calls for self-governing, active subjects who are willing to participate. To explore the notion of participation we utilize the concept of problematization and conduct a text analysis of policy documents concerning Copenhagen public libraries and the public library of Malmö. Although, all documents relate to participation and user involvement, they have different points of departure and call upon different rationalities. While the outlined policies of Malmö library problematize social inclusion, Copenhagen library primarily problematizes... (More)
In this paper, we explore how the notion of participation informs policy documents in a public library context. Today, library users to a large extent are expected to manage on their own and society calls for self-governing, active subjects who are willing to participate. To explore the notion of participation we utilize the concept of problematization and conduct a text analysis of policy documents concerning Copenhagen public libraries and the public library of Malmö. Although, all documents relate to participation and user involvement, they have different points of departure and call upon different rationalities. While the outlined policies of Malmö library problematize social inclusion, Copenhagen library primarily problematizes inefficiency. Despite this contrast, increased participation seems to be the proposed solution in both locations’ policy documents. Thus, an analysis of these documents shows the complex and sometimes contradictory meanings of the concept of participation depending on which rationality is put into play. (Less)
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author
and
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Library Quarterly
volume
90
issue
3
pages
314 - 331
publisher
University of Chicago Press
external identifiers
  • scopus:85087655038
ISSN
0024-2519
DOI
10.1086/708960
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
5cde0b16-e135-4d60-95d2-9ec9ab160968
date added to LUP
2019-08-09 07:45:21
date last changed
2020-07-29 05:58:20
@article{5cde0b16-e135-4d60-95d2-9ec9ab160968,
  abstract     = {This article explores how the notion of participation informs policy documents in a public library context. Library users are expected to manage on their own, to a large extent, as society calls for self-governing, active subjects who are willing to participate. To explore this notion of participation, we utilize the concept of problematization and analyze policy documents regarding the public libraries of Copenhagen, Denmark, and Malmö, Sweden. Although all of the documents are concerned with participation and user involvement, they have different points of departure and call upon different rationalities. Whereas the outlined policies of the Malmö libraries problematize social inclusion, the Copenhagen libraries primarily problematize inefficiency. Despite this contrast, increased participation seems to be the proposed solution in the policy documents of both cities. An analysis of these documents shows the complex and sometimes contradictory meaning of the concept of participation, depending on which rationality is put into play.},
  author       = {Engström, Lisa and Olsson Dahlquist, Lisa},
  issn         = {0024-2519},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {314--331},
  publisher    = {University of Chicago Press},
  series       = {Library Quarterly},
  title        = {The will to activate library users and the making of citizens : How different rationalities influence the notion of participation in a library context},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/708960},
  doi          = {10.1086/708960},
  volume       = {90},
  year         = {2020},
}