Curated Futures Project Imagines Possibility of a “Third Library”

CLIR today released the Curated Futures Project, a guide for professionals in galleries, libraries, archives, and museums to navigate beyond discussions of decolonizing collecting institutions to begin taking practical steps to enact change.

Organized and edited by CLIR Postdoctoral Fellows and alumni Faithe Day, Synatra Smith, Jodi Reeves Eyre, John MacLachlan, and Christa Williford, the project is the first in a series of collaborations that respond to the theme, “A Third Library is Possible.” The theme draws from the possibilities of the “third university,” a notion developed by la paperson in the book, A Third University is Possible.

Contributors to five collaborative projects use a variety of mediums, including podcasts, gaming, and mapping visualizations, to speculate about aligning academic libraries with social impact. The projects include:

The Curated Futures Project is the third installment of the CLIR Collaborative Writing Project; previous publications were The Process of Discovery and A Splendid Torch. Unlike the earlier works, the current project’s authors began their work knowing that in-person engagement would be impossible.

 “With many dealing with issues of physical, and sometimes digital (in)access to libraries, archives, and sites of exploration, these groups of collaborators were tasked with addressing questions we may not have imagined in previous years,” note the editors. “In this third CLIR Postdoctoral Fellowship collaborative project, we are well positioned to imagine the possibility of a ‘Third Library,’ a new space transcending individual institutions by challenging what we have come to know about the libraries of the past in order to create the library of the very near future.”

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