Understanding Artificial Intelligence in Research Libraries – Extensive Literature Review





Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, research libraries, literature review


Artificial intelligence (AI) now forms a part of various activities in the academic world. AI will also affect how research libraries perform and carry out their services and how the various kinds of data they hold in their repositories will be used in the future. For the moment, the landscape is complex and unclear, and library personnel and leaders are uncertain about where they should lay the path ahead. This extensive literature review provides an overview of how research libraries understand, react to, and work with AI. This paper examines the roles conceived for libraries and librarians, their users, and AI. Finally, design thinking is presented as an approach to solving emerging issues with AI and opening up opportunities for this technology at a more strategic level.


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biographies

Andrea Gasparini, University of Oslo Library

Gasparini holds a Ph.D. from the Department of Informatics, University of Oslo, Norway. He worked for 20 years as a chief engineer at the University of Oslo Library, and last year as a lecturer in Design at the Department of Informatics, University of Oslo, Norway. He has been working with e-readers and tablet PCs in a primary school and the University of Oslo for his master thesis. His Ph.D. is about the use of Design Thinking and Service Design in academic libraries. Andrea Gasparini had the possibility to test his approach in Norway, Italy, USA, and Uganda. In addition, he has received in 2017 a grant to study ways of using Artificial Intelligence (AI) combined with a designerly and user-centred approach in the context of an academic library. His publications include book chapters, journal papers, and conference papers, and conference papers in the field of Design Thinking in diverse contexts as well as the use of technologies in schools.

Heli Kautonen, Finnish Literature Society Library

Heli Kautonen, PhD, works as Director of the Finnish Literature Society Library in Helsinki, Finland. Earlier, she has worked for digital cultural heritage in different positions for over 15 years. She was one of the managers in the team at the National Library of Finland, which built the Finna service that joins together the collections of practically all Finnish archives, libraries and museums. She has been involved in various activities in her work as a university teacher, communications team member and work package leader in a European Union project. Heli Kautonen’s formal education ranges from art and design to information technology. Her doctoral thesis from the Aalto University School of Science studied the strategic aspects of user-centred design (UCD) in public digital services. Her current research interests are in applying human-centred design viewpoints to solving the societal challenges in the age of digitalisation and, particularly, artificial intelligence in the context of research libraries.



How to Cite

Gasparini, A., & Kautonen, H. (2022). Understanding Artificial Intelligence in Research Libraries – Extensive Literature Review. LIBER Quarterly: The Journal of the Association of European Research Libraries, 32(1). https://doi.org/10.53377/lq.10934



Review papers
Received 2021-08-05
Accepted 2022-01-14
Published 2022-01-31