Brian Matthews, Associate Dean for Learning and Outreach in the Virginia Tech libraries, blogs for The Chronicle of Higher Education as the Ubiquitous Librarian.  His post today encouraged librarians to “Think Like a Start-Up.

Matthews defines a start-up as “organizations dedicated to creating something new under conditions of extreme uncertainty.”  Extreme uncertainty is certainly an apt description for the conditions facing academic libraries today.  Budgets shrink while technologies and user needs expand.

Great academic libraries are those that look at these conditions of extreme uncertainly and see opportunities to create something new.

So, here is your assignment:  read Matthews’ white paper.  Then send me your comments on how the UMW Libraries can become more entrepreneurial.  Let’s get a conversation going on what we can do to provide what Steve Jobs called “insanely great” spaces, services, and products.