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Libraries and Communities

Libraries are an important part of community building, service, and shared knowledge. The Knowledge Network has a number of resources that can help you to make the most of your Public Libraries.

Maximize the Potential of Your Public Library is a report written by ICMA about the roles of public libraries, themes among innovation grant projects (funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation), lessons learned about public library use, and more. 

In 2010, PM Magazine published an article entitled Public Libraries Daring to be Different, which explores ways that different public libraries have become more and more innovative in their methods of addressing community leads.

Public Libraries & E-Government and Public Libraries & Broadband explore the growing role of computers and the internet in the success of public libraries. Both were released by the Center for Library and Information Innovation.

ICMA reviewed a report written by the Pew Charitable Trusts in an article entitled Urban Libraries Meet Greater Demands with Fewer Resources. That report compared several library systems and the statistics of their visitors and the circulation of electronic library materials.

As mentioned in the first link above, ICMA has completed the Local Government and Public Libraries Partnership Initiative, which was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Follow the link to learn more about the intiative and its results.

Read up about some of the cut backs that public libraries have had to use in a previous In The Know post entitled Facing tight Budgets, Public Libraries Cut Services with Furloughs.

And just last week, Edge Benchmarks has released a series of steps that will allow local government professionals to assess the effectiveness and scope of technology in their libraries, as well as other parts of government.

The Knowledge Network's Libraries topic page is full of resources just like these that can help you with all of your library-related needs.