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Tuesday, 14th July 2015

A National Policy Agenda for Libraries

Source: American Library Association

From Introduction to the Agenda and Initiative:

Libraries are in a digital revolution, fueled by rapid advances in technology. This digital revolution brings compelling opportunities to build upon what libraries already do well: empower and engage communities and contribute to the missions of our national institutions.

But the digital revolution also brings with it many challenges. The roles, capabilities and expectations of libraries are changing rapidly. At the same time, national investment in libraries is lagging. This is due in large part to a lack of understanding by decision makers and influencers about how libraries uniquely contribute to society in the digital age.

The extent to which the U.S. library community can position libraries as essential to the fabric of our society will establish our value proposition for decades to come. If we fail to build support from government entities, companies, foundations, associations, and other non-profit organizations, then libraries will be unable to meet our missions, and society will be the poorer for it.

The goals of this national policy agenda are to change the conversation about libraries—from a nostalgic character in our history to an essential player in our nation's story—and to help focus and guide the library community’s collective outreach to key decision makers and influencers.

+ Direct link to document (PDF; 655 KB)

+ Executive Summary (PDF; 282 KB)


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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

More articles by Adrian Janes »



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