In 2015, the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) surveyed its membership for the first time in 18 years.1 At roughly the span of a generation, 18 years is a long time in the rapidly changing world of libraries. Consider, for example, that in 1997 J.K. Rowling had just released the first Harry Potter novel, Google was a year away from being founded, and fewer than half of the respondents to the first RBMS Membership Survey had access to e-mail and the Internet at home. New landscapes call for new data, and the 2015 RBMS Membership Survey answers that call. Its findings contribute to our understanding of the past, present, and future of special collections professionals.
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