The 10-Minute International Librarian #58: Define Scenarios

We often tend to think of the future in terms of individual developments, for example in technology, environment, or social issues.

The rise of AI, climate change, or inequality of course all do have an important impact on libraries, shaping the tools we use, the physical environment we inhabit, and the people we serve.

However, on their own, they may only give us an incomplete picture.

And indeed, they may interact in unexpected or complex ways – for example, technology can both help us save energy (and so mitigate climate change), but at the same time consumes plenty itself (potentially intensifying it).

This makes it helpful to go one step further, and in doing so, get closer to being able to think through how things might look in reality.

So for our 58th 10-Minute International Librarian exercise, define scenarios.

You can do this by bringing together your thinking about some of the trends you can see shaping society. Combined, what sort of world could they lead to?

Try to define a few scenarios – you can include ones that are more likely, and ones that are less likely, from your point of view.

Once you have these, you can then think through what they might mean for your library, and how you could prepare for them, or even make the best of them!

Let us know about your experience in doing this in the comments box below!

Good luck!


This idea relates to the IFLA Strategy! Key Initiative 3.3: Empower the field at the national and regional levels.

As we publish more ideas, you will be able to view these using the #10MinuteInternationalLibrarian tag on this blog, and of course on IFLA’s Ideas Store! Do also share your ideas in the comments box below.