Annemarie Samuels in podcast 'Boldcast' about the evolution of libraries
Episode 5 of BOLDcast, the podcast of the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus Centre for BOLD Cities, discusses the evolution of libraries from simple lending points for books to places where people can come together and brush up on their digital skills. The guests in this episode are Frank Huysmans, associate professor of information society at the University of Amsterdam, Stephanie Kuijper, task manager of basic skills at the Royal Library and Annemarie Samuels, associate professor of Cultural Anthropology and Sociology of Development at Leiden University. In this forty-five-minute episode, they discuss the challenges and dilemmas of the library's changing role and increasingly complex and digitising society and government.
Although libraries have evolved into public services that offer much more than just books and reading, the stereotype that libraries are mainly for literate people and book lovers persists, limiting access for some groups. Dr. Annemarie Samuels and Dr. Sarah Giest have researched this and concluded that certain groups need the library's help but are reluctant to engage in it out of shame or a sense of inadequacy. This can limit both the reach and impact of the library.