Hello Karin Ekström!

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers – who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your librarians! We asked Karin a few questions.

What are your main duties?

I work at the Department Collection Services and purchase material in the Library and Information Science area, Informatics and fiction. I also work with interlibrary loans, some cataloging, book mending and I meet students who, for various reasons, are in need of recorded literature. Of course, I also have scheduled time at the information desk. I am very pleased with what I do and find it a challenge to help students and researchers with what ever it is the are asking for – it’s so exciting. I have taken on what a guest lecturer said at the Swedish School of  Library and Information Science once: Learn to read references! It may seem so obvious, but I have had the pleasure of that urging. I have encountered many lost students who are uncertain of what kind of source they are looking for.

For how long have you worked here?

A long time! There has been so much in the profession so it almost feels like different jobs. Even though the computerization was in full swing when I started, I still have handled a printed card catalog, written inter library loan orders on typewriter, and loaned books through the Detroit system. I’m  happy to have that experience actually. However, I hope I don´t have to go throw more changes within library systems. We had Voyager for 16 years and if we keep Alma/Primo so long I recon I have been able to retire long ago.

What do you do when you’re not at work?

My free time usually consists of some training at Friskis & Svettis. Now I hope for a nice winter because I love cross country skiing and Borås has plenty of places for that. I have been singing in Caroli Church’s Choir for a number of years and now we have a fun time in front of us with advent and Christmas songs. I spend much time in the garden and growing up my own summer flowers has become a bit of a sport.

Do you have any book tips you want to share?

Yes, I would like to talk about everything that Vibeke Olsson has written.The latest series is about the sawmill girl Bricken at Svartvik in the late 19th century. Vibeke Olsson really lives a piece of Swedish working history in a worthwhile way. She has also written novels about World War II, the Roman Empire and Biographies.
The story of her sister Elisabeth, a successful sports journalist, is very moving. She portrays her sister’s creeping alcoholism and misery in a care way. No one notices anything at first and when it’s finally gone too far, the community is not there to support neither Elisabeth or her closest. A sharp criticism of today’s society and social disarmament that engages.

What made you apply to the library at the University of Borås?

When I joined Swedish School of  Library and Information Sience 1991, I lived in Gothenburg and there were not many jobs to apply for. Then there was a vacancy at the University Library in Borås. I applied and the job was mine. After a year I got a permanent job and thats how it started.
After a while, I thought there was enough commuting, so I moved here in 2000. Now I can ride my bike to work almost all year. With studded tires and hot mittens, you can manage the whole winter.

Text: Karin Ekström &  Lena Wadell

Picture: Lena Wadell

Hello Åsa Brolund!

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers – who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your librarians! Here you got to know Åsa, new librarian, a little bit. 

Åsa, what did you do before you started to work here?

I have mostly worked in high school libraries and enjoyed it. Learning and information seeking in combination, helping and guiding in the learning situations is so rewarding!

What are your main duties?

I will be teaching information literacy to students mainly in pedagogy, so I will guide future preschool teachers, teachers, as well as educational professionals teachers and immigrant academy. In addition to teaching, I work at the information point.

What made you apply to the library at the University of Borås?

To be involved in and develop the student’s information skills in various ways, within the framework of the library, attracted me! The university is multifaceted and so does library activity, to suit all programs.

What do you do when you’re not at work?

When I do not work, I devote myself to my family and the animals at home on the farm. It’s a challenge too, haha.

What are you most curious about within the Librarian role according to development?

One thing that interested me since I studied library and information science here in Borås, is the conversation that takes place at the information desk, or in learning situations when a question is asked for a librarian and what kind of answers follow and how the question and the questionnaire become treated. How do you do the best in these situations as a librarian? A close interest in me is also how we best educate in information literacy.

 Do you have any book tips you want to share?

Att tro på Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones -about the book and the power of fantasy in a war-torn environment where the written word is barely accessible.

Jonathan bortom all kontroll by Meg Rosoff – smart and somewhat screwed novel about relationships and applicants.

Det finns ingenting att vara rädd för by Johan Heltne – a novel about faith, shame and sickness, adult and love …

Text: Åsa Brolund & Lena Wadell
Photo: Lena Wadell

Hi Klaz Arvidson!

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers – who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your librarians! We asked Lena a few questions.

What are your main duties?
I’m part of the unit Digital Services that works with library systems and research support. I work mainly with Primo, support systems and parts of the library’s website. I’m in team Communication and team Alma and Primo. In addition, I work at the information point where I answer questions and support students, staff and other users in their library usage.

For how long have you worked here?
Oh, it’s been quite long! For further reflection, I’m in my 18th year at the library. My first task when I started here was to take a new grip on the library’s web. Over the years my tasks have changed slightly, but I’ve always been involved in working with web and systems and contacts with library users.

What do you enjoy most about the job?
The funniest thing about the job is two things I think – problem solving and the contacts with our students and staff. At the information point you can be prepared for many different kinds of questions and it is exciting and rewarding. Over the past year, we have implemented two new library systems, Alma and Primo, which has been stimulating and challenging.

What do you do when you’re not at work?
Outside the job, I spend a lot of time with my family. We have an old house that requires some maintenance which takes a lot of my time. Otherwise, I like to photograph, move in nature and kayak. Longing for the year’s first kayaking trip, it will be a sunny day in April when the ice is released!

Do you have any book tips you want to share?
I read a bit in periods, some time ago I read the books Gentlemen and Gangsters by Klas Östergren. Particularly Gentlemen, I can recommend it’s a writer’s meeting with two strange brothers. Their lives are presented and  many interesting developments are described in detail. Another book I recommend is Norrland by Po Tidholm. It consists of a number of essays and reports about the geographical part of Sweden, which is a bit sloppy called Norrland.

Text: Klaz Arvidson & Lena Holmberg
Photo: Lena Holmberg

Hi Signe Wulund!

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers. Who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your librarians! We asked Lena a few questions.

 

What are your main duties?

Since about 6 weeks ago I work with research support in the Digital Services function. This means that I (when I get a bit more experience) will be the person to help and inform researchers, PhD students and administrators about issues regarding for example the publication database DiVA, Open Access and research data management. I’ll naturally also be available at the InformationPoint and do a lot of other things behind the scenes – it’s going to be exciting to see exactly what my roles develops into eventually.

What where you doing before you started working here?

That’s a good question. I’ve done a lot of random stuff! The last five years I’ve been living in Cambridge where I had a research support role at the University. Before that I was a children’s librarian at the fantastic public library in Nynäshamn south of Stockholm. I arrived there from Japan, where I among other experiences managed to study Japanese and teach Naval English at a coast guard headquarter. I did my Masters in Library and Information Science at Uppsala University, and they had an exchange program through which I ended up in Japan the first time.

What do you do when you’re not at work?

Right now I’m furnishing a brand new rental apartment, and trying to get to know Borås. I’m completely new here, and I came from England with two suitcases and nothing else. We have boxes of books (and other stuff too) coming eventually, but as we had rented a furnished place in Cambridge there’s a lot of IKEA and running around Knalleland going on right now. I really miss hanging out in the couch with my wife and our two cats, but fortunately they are also moving here to Borås from England in the beginning of December. And I look forward to getting back out in the Swedish nature!

What made you apply to the library at the University of Borås?

I had set up a notification for jobs in Sweden with keywords like “open access”, and when I saw that the University of Borås was looking for a digital services librarian it felt like an amazing chance. After all, this is the heart of Swedish library studies, and I couldn’t imagine a better combination than a work place where I could use the specialist knowledge I’d gained at the University of Cambridge and at the same time learn a lot of new things in the field. And that proved true the very first day, when I got to listen in on a lecture to Library and Information Science students some of my colleagues gave.

Did you know from the beginning that you wanted to work with researchers and publications?

Not at all – this has really happened by pure chance! I started as a temp in Cambridge, and pretty early I ended up in various administrative departments where I helped out with exactly research support and publications. I quickly became involved in questions regarding the open access of publication and research data, and that’s how I ended up here. I feel that it’s a very exciting area that is also developing extremely rapidly, at the same time as it’s important for libraries and higher education institutions to keep up and communicate everything it means to those who are directly affected by the relevant requirements and policies.

Do you have any book tips you want to share?

I like everything from NK Jemisin, but the just-completed broken Earth trilogy is probably the best she’s written so far. It is crude and majestic fantasy in the borderland to SF where she confronts many difficult questions. No wonder that the first two parts won each Hugo. Yoon Ha Lee has so far two books out in the series Machineries of the Empire, where the first part was so good that I read it again after six months just to get to experience it again. He writes SF that feels like watching a colourful animated film. Ada Palmer won the John W. Campbell Award in the category of Best newcomer with her future vision Too like the lightning, which I can really understand-. It also doesn’t resemble anything I’ve read before. I’m now waiting tense for her The will to Battle that’s coming out in December.

Text: Tandis Talay and Signe Wulund
Picture: Tandis Talay

Hi Lena Svenson!

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers. Who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your staff! We asked Lena a few questions.

Bild på Lena SvenssonWhat are your main duties?
I work at the Department Collection Services here at the library, and I would say I have three main tasks. I help students who, for various reasons, are in need of recorded literature. I also work with Interlibrary Loans, i.e. I send books and articles to other libraries. Furthermore, I help our distance students to get the material they need sent home from the Library.
Since it is the European Dyslexia Week this week I would like to pay attention to the help offered here at the university. If you feel that you have a reading disability, you have the right to have your literature recorded.

For how long have you worked here?
The University has been my employer since in 1989. I worked at the Financial Department for a few years before coming to the Library in 1992. For 27 years I have been working in three different library systems and if I have calculated correctly, my current Library Director is the sixth in order.

What do you do when you’re not at work?
I like to cook and have dinner with good friends. Training, creative activities, travel, Wordfeud, Sudoku and reading are examples of what I would like to do when all other household work is done.

Do you have any book tips you want to share with us?
Elakt spel by Jan Mårtensson is a really good detective story. To get a little different perspective on life, I can recommend Armlös, benlös men inte hopplös by Mikael Andersson. For me, Linda Olsson’s Nu vill jag sjunga dig milda sånger really challanged my patience. I had to start over a few times before I coluld read it. Now, I like it very much! Linda’s style of writing is a bit special, I think.

What do you like most about your job?
To meet all wonderful  people and to search for articles.

Text: Christel Olsson & Lena Svenson
Photo: Klaz Arvidson

 

Hi Lena Holmberg!

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers. Who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your librarians! We asked Lena a few questions.

How long have you been working here?
I celebrated ten years as an employee in 2015 and is now in my twelfth year. The years go fast when you have fun! I have always had tasks related to acquisitions, but I have also once taken care of our lovely student assistants who we called library guards at the time. A fun task!

What are your main duties?
I’m part of the function Media, where I purchase literature for the Faculty of Caring Science, Work Life and Social Welfare. I’m also responsible for interlibrary loans, which means everything from ensuring that both researchers and students get books and articles they can not find at the University Library, to invoicing and development of systems and routines. I’m also a member of the library’s communication team where I mainly work with social media but also other communication channels. Like most of the librarians, I also have scheduled time at the information desk a few times a week. Although the last six months I have spent most of my time as a working member in the project group for implementing a new library system, which has been both tough and frustrating but at the same time fun and educational!

What do you enjoy most about the job?
To help people, to help users get that article they need for their dissertation, or to make the students feel great when the leave the library after helping them a bit along the way. It’s also fun (and a challenge) to try and get information about the library to our users in a good way. In addition, having lovely colleagues makes life at work fun everyday.

What do you do when you’re not at work?
I’m a nerd that devour both movies, TV shows and I like to go to the cinema, theater, museum and I also read quite a lot of fiction as soon as I get a free time. I have a family who I spend a lot of time with and we often play boardgames together and as long as the kids are small, we like to be out geocaching or chasing Pokémons, but sometimes I force them to a cultural event instead.

Do you have any book tips you want to share?
I have a lot! but I’ll settle with three: Sara Lövestam’s books about the paperless private detective Kouplan provide insight into a whole different life than many of us live today, start with Sanning med modifikation (only available in Swedish). A dramatic and intense novel of my taste is Butcher’s Crossing by John Williams. It is about hunting buffalo but equally about the pursuit of your self. If you instead feel like having a funny reading experience, you have to read Christer Lundberg’s Bläckfisken (only available in Swedish). A tall tale that takes place in Gothenburg and in its madness gives many good laughs.

Text: Tandis Talay & Lena Holmberg
Foto: Tandis Talay

Hello Kristoffer Karlsson

In a series of portraits we are going to introduce the staff at the Library to all our readers and customers. Who are the people working at the library? And what are they doing there? Read our portraits and get to know your librarians! We asked Kristoffer a few questions.

What are your main duties?
I mainly work with publications in DiVA and support to researchers. In the future, I will work more with research data and help with information retrieval.

 What where you doing before you started working here?
After graduating from The Swedish School of Library and Information Science, I worked at Chalmers University of technology library in about one and a half year.
Do you have any book recommendations you want to share?
Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami are among the best books I’ve ever read. Everone should read it. The English translation, not the Swedish.
Another tip is The Expanse by James‘s A Corey. The first book is called Leviathan Wakes. It is now also available as a television series on SyFy. Best science fiction series since Battlestar Galactica and Firefly!
What made you apply to the library at the University of Borås?
I was homesick. I have been active in the University of Borås between 2009 and 2015 as a student and in the Student Union,I enjoyed it a lot. To get a job at the University Library was like coming home again. In addition, the work tasks seemed fun!
What are you most curious about within the Librarian role according to development?
I‘m very curious to see how the Librarian role will evolve now that we have the problem of alternative facts. Source criticism is more important than ever, and that’s something that librarians are professionals at. I want to see librarians taking place in the media and talk about source criticism and the importance of being skeptical.
Text & picture: Tandis Talay