May 27 Lecture: From the House of Books to the Place for People


May 27 Lecture: From the House of Books to the Place for People

From the House of Books to the Place for People – City Library of Hamm as the Third Place

Copyright: Stadt Hamm_Hübner

By Mr. Jens BOYER,  Director of the City Library in Hamm, Germany

Co-organized with Goethe-Institut Hongkong; sponsored by Hong Kong Public Libraries


Date: 27 May 2019 (Monday)
Time: 7:00–8:30 p.m.
Venue: Activity Room 1, G/F, Hong Kong Central Library, Causeway Bay


Since its establishment in 1895, the City Library of Hamm has been striving to accommodate the ever-changing expectation of its users, to offer technical opportunities and to develop an media environment, without compromising its mission to provide its citizens with comprehensive access to information.
The opening of a new extension for the Central library in the city center in 2010 was a milestone for the library’s strategy in transforming itself into a place for everyone in the community. The idea “Library as a third Place” was already employed as the utilization concept from the beginning. It means providing a high sojourn quality with attractive offers and versatile technical infrastructure, with which different demands from the public could be righteously met.
The presentation will describe the main aspects and the further development of the concept “Library as a Third Place” within the framework of a municipal body and the structural characteristics of the City Library of Hamm (a library system with one central library, four district libraries and one mobile library).
The challenges and the factors of success will be presented with updated examples. The design of space, the network with diversifying partners, an intensive collaboration with educational institutions, a wide spectrum of activities, and the combination of analog and digital structure. An outlook on the basic trend of personal development, city development and the trends of public library system will be thematized.

Mr. Jens BOYER

In 2017, Jens Boyer returned to his home city Hamm and took up the position as the director of the City Library Hamm. Since then, he has been actively involved in the promotion of library works in Hamm. Jens Boyer has learned the subject of library science from the bottom up: in addition to completing his study as a graduated librarian, he also successfully completed the post-graduate degree program “Library and Information Science” at the Technical University of Cologne. After completing his first professional career, Boyer started working in various positions and departments at the Goethe-Institut for more than 15 years. From 2002 to 2007, he worked as the director of the Library of Goethe-Institut in Tokyo and oversaw the development and implementation of Information Service in East Asia. He then took over the management of the library department in the Goethe-Institut Head Office in Munich. From 2013 onwards, Boyer took up the directorship at the Library of Goethe-Institut London. There he was also responsible for the information Service of the whole of North-West Europe with a total of nine regional institutes. In addition to Library Management and Information Service, his duties in London also focused on the implementation of important strategic aspects such as the expansion of multimedia information and media services and the further development of the digital presence of all Goethe-Institutes Worldwide.