A beautiful experience at Chalmers Library

Last month I had the opportunity to visit Chalmers Library in Gothemburg (Sweden) for an Erasmus Staff Training Programme.
I've never heard about the possibility to have an erasmus experience as staff, till we received in the last July a request from a Swedish colleague who asked to stay at our Library for some weeks. We were very happy about the idea and we accepted (and Sara stayed with us for 8 weeks!).
In September I left too and I spent a wonderful week in Gothemburg.

Chalmers University of Technology is a university focused on technology, natural sciences, architecture, maritime and other management areas, founded in 1829 by William Chalmers, director of Swedish India East Company, as "industrial school".
From 1994 Chalmers is an "aktiebolag", a private foundation.


Campus main entrance


Chalmers has 3 libraries: the Main library, inside the campus, Architecture library, inside the architecture department, and Lindholmen library, situated in modern campus of Lindholmen.

During the week I had meetings with librarians specialized in different branches: I talked about information literacy with Marco (an Italian colleague working at Chalmers), about bibliometrics with Hana-Kari and e-resources and discovery with Marie. I had a very interesting meeting with Kristin and Rolf: they told me about agile methods and we had together a brainstorming simulation.
I also met Kristina, who deals with institutional repository (Chalmers Publication Library) and open access and Marta, who is working with MOOCs.





The main library is the brain of the system, not so much in terms of bibliographic resources (only 2% of it is owned paper), but at the level of liveliness and flow of ideas. 
At Chalmers are working many librarians and IT technicians, they cooperate together for the development of new services and databases. Every librarian is very competent in relation to his task, everything seems very organized.
They also have beautiful work places and fantastic share rooms where to have time together and fika (I discovered that in Swedish people drink more coffee then Italians!).

Relax room
Organization of the washing machines (always full of coffee mugs)


Book binding material



Obviously I met Sara, the colleague who stayed with us in IMT in July. She works in the Architecture Library, a small and very friendly place.




The other Chalmer campus is in Lindholmen Science Park a futuristic place where industry, academy and public sector meet and develop projects.
Here I visited the Lindholmen Library, the third library of Chalmers.




At the end of this experience I came back home with a lot of good impressions and many ideas for IMT Library. It was really important for me to see how librarians work abroad, to share experience and increase knowledge.

I recommend to anyone to take advantage of this great opportunity of the Erasmus staff training... and to visit Gothenburg, a really nice city!
Caterina















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