ALA and the Harwood Institute are pleased to release three new tools to help libraries “turn outward” and lead community change.
The new tools are designed for libraries that already have been putting the “turning outward” approach to use, or those that have attended a Harwood Institute training or orientation.
- “Making It Stick with Staff” is a discussion guide to help libraries reflect on their changing outlook and make the “turning outward” approach part of their everyday work.
- “Making Meaning of Data” helps libraries make sense of data about library usage and activity and use that information to create programs that better serves the community’s needs.
- “Tracking Your Progress” provides a visual representation of the “turning outward” approach to help libraries visualize where they have been and where they are going next.
Libraries and library professionals around the country are using this approach to:
- lead conversations with community members to better understand their goals and concerns;
- develop library strategic plans that benefit the library and the greater community;
- connect with underserved segments of the library’s service area;
- overcome political gridlock; and
- create professional development opportunities that meet the library system’s needs.
The full collection of “turning outward” resources — including a 90-day “Step-by-Step Guide to ‘Turning Outward’ to Your Community” — can be downloaded, free of charge, at ala.org/LTC.
Project Outcome is managed by the Public Library Association, funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and builds upon a 2013 initiative led by then-PLA president Carolyn Anthony (Director, Skokie Public Library), who established a Performance Measurement Task Force (PMTF). The goal of the PMTF was to develop standardized measures of effectiveness for library services and promote training and implementation tools for using the data collected. The PMTF identified seven essential library service areas for Project Outcome to assess:
This week, officials from the Owatonna Public Library had the opportunity to share with members of the Owatonna City Council the library’s annual report for 2014, and it truly was impressive.
But the library is more than numbers, just as surely as it is more than books. It’s a place where friends gather, where poetry is read and shared, where films are shown, and, yes, where people who might not otherwise be able to afford access to the Internet can get online and become part of the information highway.
“Our people love their library. It’s an important part of our community.”
That’s how Owatonna Public Library director Mary Kay Feltes sums up her annual report, which she delivered to the city council on Tuesday prior to the regular council meeting. And she’s got the charts to prove it.
Jones, Jr., Plummer Alston. 2015. “Public Library Adult Education for Immigrants in North Carolina.” North Carolina Libraries (Online) 73, no. 1: 12-19.
In the period from 1876, the founding year of the American Library Association, to 1924, the effective year of the National Origins Act with its quotas for immigrants, U.S. public libraries of the Northeast, the West, and the Midwest were busy organizing to serve the needs of the flood of millions of immigrants from Southeastern and Central Europe, Russia, and the Middle East.1 North Carolina did not receive any significant number of immigrants from this influx as they had earlier immigrants, including Germans, English, French, Irish, and Scots, from the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. By 1880, these former immigrants were now established North Carolina citizens who had been assimilated, or Americanized, the term used at in the early twentieth century, and spoke English, albeit in differing and sometimes colorful accents and dialects.
We asked for your feedback, and we got it! ALA is influential and great for networking — but we can also be too complex, sometimes bureaucratic, and we send a lot of email. Well, we heard you loud and clear, and we are working on it. Help us stay on track. Through a series of “kitchen table conversations” at the 2015 Annual Conference, attendees will gather to dig deeper into the ALA member experience. Topics may include joining and renewing, reducing email “chatter,” and making sure you get the information that matters most to you. You do the talking; we’ll be there to listen, learn, and then act. Please participate in the conversation and help us shape a new ALA together.
. The Public Library Association conducted a study that launched a transformation in thinking about public library service, A Strategy for Public Library Change (Martin, 1972). A focus on community-based planning helped shift the profession’s discourse to the idea of local planning models—a shift that began a nearly 50 year stage of public library development based on planning.
The Public Library Association, Public Library Development Program documents:
• Charles R. McClure, Planning and Role Setting for Public Libraries: A Manual of Options and Procedures (Chicago: American Library Association, 1987).
• Nancy Van House, Mary Jo Lynch, Charles R. McClure, Douglas L. Zweizig, and Eleanor Jo Rodger, Output Measures for Public Libraries: A Manual of Standardized Procedures (Chicago: American Library Association, 1987).
• Public Library Association, Public Library Data Service, Statistical Report (Chicago: Public Library Association, annual, 1992–present) continues Public Library Data Service Statistical Report (Chicago: Public Library Association, 1988–1991).
• Peggy O’Donnell, Public Library Development Program: Manual for Trainers (Chicago: American Library Association, 1988). • Virginia A. Walter, Output Measures for Public Library Service to Children: A Manual of Standardized Procedures (Chicago: Association for Library Service to Children, Public Library Association, American Library Association, 1992)
• Virginia A. Walter, Output Measures and More: Planning and Evaluating Public Library Services for Young Adults (Chicago: Young Adult Library Services Association, Public Library Association, American Library Association, 1995).
. The Public Library Association, Results series:
• Ethel Himmel and William James Wilson, Planning for Results: A Public Library Transformation Process (Chicago: American Library Association, 1998).
• Diane Mayo and Sandra Nelson, Wired for the Future: Developing Your Library Technology Plan (Chicago: American Library Association, 1999).
• Sandra Nelson, Ellen Altman, and Diane Mayo, Managing for Results: Effective Resource Allocation for Public Libraries (Chicago: American Library Association, 2000).
• Sandra Nelson, The New Planning for Results: A Streamlined Approach (Chicago: American Library Association, 2001).
• Diane Mayo and Jeanne Goodrich, Staffing for Results: A Guide to Working Smarter (Chicago: American Library Association, 2002).
• Sandra Nelson and June Garcia, Creating Policies for Results: From Chaos to Clarity (Chicago: American Library Association, 2003).
• Rhea Joyce Rubin, Demonstrating Results: Using Outcome Measurement in Your Library (Chicago: American Library Association, 2005).
• Diane Mayo, Technology for Results: Developing Service-Based Plans (Chicago: American Library Association, 2005).
• Cheryl Bryan, Managing Facilities for Results: Optimizing Space for Services (Chicago: American Library Association, 2007).
• Sandra Nelson, Strategic Planning for Results (Chicago: American Library Association, 2008).
• Sandra Nelson, Implementing for Results: Your Strategic Plan in Action (Chicago: American Library Association, 2009).
FT. MYERS, FL. CORNOG PLAZA
Southwest Airlines and Project for Public Spaces are working with the Lee County Library System to bring fresh Placemaking ideas to the recently-completed Cornog Plaza, located on the grounds of the new Ft. Myers Regional Library. PPS participated in the design of the new downtown library and developed the concepts for the public spaces. We are thrilled to be able to refine and augment our original work by assisting the Lee County Library System with transforming the new plaza into a vibrant community hub. Working with the Library community and the people who live, work, play and relax in downtown Ft. Myers, we will expand amenities, tailor events, identify library and other programs that best utilize the new spaces around the library.
The goal of this effort is to establish Cornog Plaza as a welcoming downtown anchor and a great place that can serve as an inspiring new model of a dynamic urban space in Southwest Florida.
Through a multi-year partnership with Project for Public Spaces (PPS), the pioneering organization behind Placemaking, Southwest Airlines is committed to leveraging the power of Placemaking to strengthen connections between people and the places they share and to spark social, economic, and environmental benefits in communities across the country.