• Disrupting Traditional Power Structures in Academic Libraries: Saying No, How to Do it, and Why it Matters

      Cassidy, Melanie; Versluis, Ali; Menzies, Erin; University of Guelph; University of Guelph; Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (The University of Arizona, 2018-11-16)
      Many academic libraries face austerity measures, personnel reductions, or compression; the weight of increased workloads results in diminished mental health, increased precarity, and an inability to engage in critical teaching and learning practices. These challenges sit at the intersection of resilience, precarity, and neoliberalism. Within academic libraries, resilience is endorsed as a means of negotiating precarious employment by encouraging non-permanent staff to continually prove their value to the institution or risk not being retained. The neoliberal perspective endorses an environment where individual culpability is assigned at the cost of challenging institutional practices. This session seeks to interrogate our position as library staff within this construct, both in terms of how we are influenced by this intersection and how we support it. Participants will share experiences, develop best practices, and establish a “resilience taxonomy” to provide support in resisting overwork, precarity, and other negative side-effects of the neoliberal academic library.