The Value of Libraries
Authors are speaking out for libraries through Our Authors, Our Advocates an initiative of the American Library Association.As they have noted: Authors are natural allies of libraries, in these challenging times. They understand the key role that libraries and library staff play in the economic, social and educational fabric of our nation. Help fuel the national dialogue on America’s libraries. Share these videos and messages with your friends, family, and those who can make a difference.
Library services and resources are generally free to their consumers, so it is often difficult to measure the social and economic impact that the public library has on its community.
- In 2010 the study, "Children's Access to Print Material and Education-Related Outcomes," was commissioned by Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) and conducted by Learning Point Associates, a nonprofit education research and consulting organization and affiliate of American Institutes for Research (AIR). The study found that “children's book lending and ownership programs were shown to have positive behavioral, educational, and psychological outcomes.”
Find out more.
- In March 2010, the Information School at the University of Washington released the U.S. Impact Public Library Study “Opportunity for All: How the American Public Benefits from Internet Access at U.S. Libraries,” a research initiative examining the impact of free access to computers and the Internet in public libraries. The summary of the study notes that “Internet access is now one of the most sought after public library services, and it is used by nearly half of all visitors.” Find out more.
- In 2006, a study conducted on behalf of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Office of Commonwealth Libraries demonstrated the taxpayer return on investment to be $5.50 on every $1.00 of tax support, but also that the impact of the public library goes beyond the economic. Find out more.
- The services and resources provided the library is significant to its consumers, but how much are those services worth? What would the out of pocket cost be if the library didn’t exist, or if the only way to use them came with a fee? Find out more.
- Read about the value of libraries as seen in the news. Find out more.