Wasserman Library closed to CLIS students for the last time today.
Congratulations to the CLIS Advisory Committee on Second Floor Space Allocation. Their report is in.
CLIS Advisory Committee on Second Floor Space Allocation
November 17, 2005
The Ad hoc Advisory Committee on Second Floor Space Allocation was charged with these responsibilities:
1. Develop plans for the use of the Wasserman Library space, labs, associated storage and office space on the second floor of the South Wing of Hornbake Building
2. Review suggested plans with Dean Preece, Associate Dean Barlow, Vicky Levy (Provost’s Office), Brenda Testa and members of UMD facilities staff.
The members of the committee as initially appointed were Diane Barlow, chair; Allison Druin; Judith Klavans; Katy Lawly; Doug Oard; Lee Strickland; and Evivva Weinraub. Stephen Hannestad took Lee Strickland’s place on the committee. The committee was selected to represent the various activities and constituencies of CLIS. Druin and Klavans represented research activities; Strickland then Hannestad represented the Center for Information Policy; Oard represented the Research and Teaching Support Committee; Lawly and Weinraub represented the Ph.D. and master’s students, respectively; and Barlow represented teaching activities. However, the committee very quickly developed a perspective in which each member represented the interests of the College as a whole as well as his or her individual constituency or activity.
The committee met weekly from September 12, 2005, to November 14, 2005. The committee solicited input from students, faculty, and staff via an idea board on the second floor; analyzed the ideas submitted by means of the idea board; toured the Career Center on the third floor of Hornbake Building, UMIACS, and the fourth floor of the Computer Science Classroom Building; reviewed concept plans drawn up by each committee member; and brainstormed ideas about overarching goals, strategic approaches, and implementation factors for the space.
The committee went beyond its charge in two ways. First, it quickly became obvious to the committee that a comprehensive plan for the use of all CLIS space was needed but that developing such a plan was beyond the charge to the committee and the resources available to the committee, including time to complete its work. However, the committee established that its work was artificially constrained unless the ground and fourth floors of Hornbake were considered as background. In addition, the committee recognized that recommendations for the second floor had implications for other CLIS space.
The second excursion outside the original charge was our focus on the actual design of the space. We discovered that, as a group, thinking about floor layout, lighting, walls, building materials, and the technology infrastructure was essential to fulfilling our charge. Our recommendations reflect our work on how the space will be configured and how it will look.
The committee developed a vision of the second floor space as a functional, flexible, hospitable space for students, faculty, researchers, staff, and visitors; a space that enhances development of community and facilitates instruction and research. Tenants of the space and visitors alike feel energized by the creative deployment of light, color, and shape and by the activities taking place there. Information and communication technologies are integral to this vision; the technology that supports community activities provides a continually expanding avenue for instruction and research, as well. One element of the second floor is a signature space for the College, giving physical form to the open, collaborative, interdisciplinary perspective that defines us.
We believe that this vision is within reach. We recommend this vision to the College and to the University; the results will be well worth the cost. Careful attention to the vision and to the principles and guidelines given below during planning and construction are required. The recommendations that follow are a framework for realizing this vision.
The Overarching Goals are to create a space that
* Is an integrated information area that enhances work on the second floor and in CLIS as a whole and that in and of itself will be a “living lab” through which students and faculty can learn about the integration of information technology throughout a working community of scholars and students.
* Is a highly functional space where people can be productive in research and which enhances instruction and interpersonal interaction.
* Promotes internal transformation within CLIS and on the campus by bringing together a diverse interdisciplinary group of faculty, researchers, staff, and students with CLIS at the center of their interaction.
* Creates a strong, positive impression on external constituents who visit; it will be the signature space for CLIS.
* Generates energy among those who are there.
A Strategic Approach for creating a space that meets these Overarching Goals will be based on these principles:
* Space is integrated in various ways
o Physically and virtually
o Among the ground, second, and fourth floors of Hornbake
o Functionally for research and instruction
* Use of the space is visible
o Glass is a prominent and strategic building material.
o The space is used for many events.
o The space is fully occupied; there is no empty space.
· Interaction is fostered through
o Intentional traffic flow control
o Visibility through and into parts of the space
o Support for intentional or planned interaction and for incidental interaction (not expected, serendipitous).
o Welcoming and integrating external collaborators community.
Space (square footage) is defined as
* Semi-permanent shared space. Semi-permanent shared space is defined as components that promote formal and informal interpersonal interaction among tenants and visitors to the space. The Gazebo, a centrally-located, glass-enclosed conference room, and Nodules, areas where a corridor widens into a small octagonal patio, are examples of components that promote interaction. A server room and conference room are examples of a shared function space. The space is considered to be semi-permanent because it will not be subject to the annual review discussed below.
* Semi-permanent dedicated space. Semi-permanent dedicated space is defined as components designed and furnished for a particular type of use, service, or function; the space may be shared among several groups. Examples are classrooms, seminar rooms, instructional labs, server room, and a business center. The space is considered to be semi-permanent because it will not be subject to the annual review discussed below.
* Allocated space. Allocated space is space assigned to a function or group for a designated time. Examples of allocated space are offices and labs given to a research project; special purpose lab or classroom for instruction; office or lab for a student activity; and a research incubator.
Initial Assignment. The initial assignment of space is the assignment upon which construction drawings are based. The committee recommends flexibility and ease of reconfiguration as guiding principles in configuring the second floor, but we recognize that there is a limit to their application in practice. Therefore, it is recommended that the initial space assignments be done as a first step in planning for construction.
Periodic Review and Reassignment. The committee recommends the periodic review of all space use. Assignment and use of semi-permanent space should be reviewed on a five-year cycle. Assignment and use of allocated space should be reviewed annually.
Assignment and Review Process. The committee discussed the process through which both the initial assignments and the periodic reviews and reassignments will be conducted. We recognize that the Dean is responsible for resource allocation. The discussion was on the question of whether or not it would be desirable to have a committee to advise the Dean. We do not have a recommendation on this question; however, we point out that the Research and Teaching Support Committee could be used for this purpose.
Guidelines for Assigning Space. We recommend these four guidelines:
Guideline 1: Functions or activities will be assigned space on the second floor when the second floor is demonstrably better suited for the purpose than space on the ground or fourth floor. The committee solicited ideas for ways to use the second floor space and was rewarded with many good suggestions. The natural tendency is to try to accommodate all of these suggestions on the second floor because this space will become premier space within CLIS. However, while the second floor is a large space, it is not unlimited; and services and structural elements take significant amounts of the space. Therefore, the first guideline is deciding upon use of the second floor space is based on the premise that the space cannot and should not be required to house every function, activity, or program that requests space there.
Guideline 2: Functions or activities will be assigned an adequate but not overly ample amount of space. The demand for space in CLIS, as in most units on campus, will most likely always exceed the supply. The process in assigning space should be to establish priorities among competing demands and meet the reasonable needs in priority order. Several operational rules are based in this guideline:
· Duplication of space usage should be minimized. For example, faculty, researchers, staff, or students should be assigned one office or work space; a person should be assigned more than one office only in extraordinary circumstances when the need for more than one office can be demonstrated to be essential. This rule does not apply to classrooms, of course.
· Space used for service and support and space that is used occasionally should be shared whenever possible. For example, a server room should accommodate as many needs for such a space, as possible. A conference room should be a shared space.
· Space should be configured for multiple compatible functions. For example, the same space can be used as a conference room, seminar room, and small group work room as needed.
· Space that is not used for its assigned purpose will be reassigned. The use it or lose it principle must be firmly applied. Reserving space for future use should not be permitted except in unusual circumstances.
Guideline 3: Space is assigned for a designated period of time, and all assignments are reviewed periodically; the assignment can be changed or cancelled as a result of the review. The College’s needs for space will change as its instructional and research programs change. Space use must be flexible so that emerging needs can be met. On the other hand, an ongoing program or activity needs assurance of stability for a known period of time. There must be a balance between accommodating changing needs of the College and assuring stability to current activities.
Guideline 4: CLIS’s participation, particularly in a leadership role, is a primary factor in determining priority for space within CLIS. Promoting interdisciplinary collaboration is a goal for the second floor space, which means that external collaborators should be welcomed and accommodated. However, the significance and extent of CLIS’s participation in an activity should be a primary factor in deciding upon requests for space from interdisciplinary teams. Priority should be given to activities in which CLIS has a leadership role.
Technology Infrastructure. An extensive technology infrastructure is essential to realizing the vision of the second floor as a “living lab” in which students and faculty can learn about the integration of information technology throughout a working community of scholars and students. Some examples are
· Cone of Silence – These closely focused speaker systems would provide audio to selected areas, such as the Nodules or the reception station near the elevator.
· Plasma Screens -- Plasma screens of varying sizes would be placed throughout the area to provide video of classes, special lectures, and other CLIS events. The screens would be used for internal communication, as well.
· WebCams – Internal communication between the ground, second, and fourth floors of Hornbake would be facilitated by using webcams as part of an in-house communication system. One special use of this technology would be to staff a reception desk for the second floor.
Staff Support. Staff will be required to support the ongoing operation of the second floor space. These key staff positions should be provided.
Light. Our experience working on the fourth floor, where all but two windows are “owned” by tenants of individual offices, convinces us that trapping the supply of natural light within relatively few confined spaces is not a good design principle for the second floor. We highly recommend that glass be used to enhance the flow of natural light within interior spaces and that the design incorporate some of the existing windows into communal and open spaces.
Color. We recommend the creative use of color to assist in defining and designated spaces and in giving pizzazz (that’s a technical term!) to the space.
Continuous Improvement. The space must be enhanced and changed as time goes by. New and replacement technology will be required. Reconfiguration will be necessary. Plans for providing funds for these upgrades and changes should be put into place now.
The committee enjoyed its work. We recommend our vision to you as a path forward toward strengthening and expanding the CLIS community, and we will continue to assist in realizing the vision if we can be helpful.
We have attached concept plans for the second floor and a table that demonstrates the intersections between physical components and our goals. We are prepared to discuss this report with you and others.
I have not seen any details from the Space Committee about its work. I was using the great collection at Wasserman the other day and saw the empty shelves and much evidence of the moving project. Perhaps I'll email the student representatives or Jenny about it; however, it seems to me that the college might let us know how things are going. Closing a library that held such promise for collective innovation without a public plan for its replacement just seems a shame to me. I hope whatever the College is planning will truly be with the benefit of students in mind and in practice.
OK, Yes! I'm still trying to wrap up my postings here. I'd like to close with the broadest level of questions that remain for me personally. This is a dialogue that's had only narrow, narrow slices aired or explored, and I think the community has lost on that score, while it's reaffirmed for some that they have a stake and confirmed for others that they are not CLIS "stakeholders". [Re-?]Clarifying boundaries can sometimes be very good.
I'm working on tapering off my Save Wasserman blog activities, but below is a recent CLIS list posting"inspired" by the Town Hall Meetings, for which Rob Jensen deserves much much credit [the meetings not the posting]. My posting on Tuesday about the "Space" Committee [quotations supplied by the committee] might go up later.
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Dean's Confusion on Dissemination of I-School Definition
Date: Wed, 14 Sep 2005 08:06:22 -0400
From: Kevin Stone Fries
Jenny's comments at the Town Hall Meeting about being surprised people
weren't sure what she meant about I-schools because she had a single
minute-long or so conversation with me about it seemed odd, so to
clarify, I infact *posted* publicly some information to my peers and let
her have space as the authority on her own school's listserv to address
her student's honest question. The best I can do in this framed
dialogue, I did weeks ago, and if you're interested, please read the
posting, with links, below.
The range and depth of the issues, and at times passion of
conversations, over this loss of student resources makes keeping
conversation timely and relevent very difficult for all parties. We
have moved into the "solution" phase, and I wish those with a role
success in making the best of an extremely unfortunate position. As one
student observed/questioned at the meeting, "Isn't closing Wasserman
just a band aid?" So there's lots to do, and I'm happy to turn my
attention after three months finally to my studies, where I'm sure all
parties agree they belong.
To Be Posted
Some of us recently held pre-Town-Hall meeting, where we brainstormed several points about Wasserman's move that we thought were important. A few of us have put these points into a letter that we will forward to Dean Preece and Provost Destler before the Town Hall meeting, in hopes that these concerns can be addressed there. That letter is attached below. If you would like a Word version of this letter, let us know.
Now that we have some information about the Town Hall meetings, and after our meetings, I thought a short post to refocus the conversation might not be bad.