February 17, 2018

Americans for Libraries Council To Study Public Opinion About Libraries

By LJ Staff

The Americans for Libraries Council (ALC) has been awarded a two-year, $770,000 challenge grant by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to implement Building the Case for Libraries, a three-part initiative to build knowledge about public libraries. A study and national public opinion poll will be developed by the council and Public Agenda, a nonpartisan opinion research organization. Diantha D. Schull, president of ALC, said, ‘We expect the study will provide essential ammunition for those working on behalf of libraries and will challenge policy makers to reconsider libraries and library support from the perspective of their constituents – their voters.’ It will include focus groups and interviews with state and local legislators, interviews with community leaders, a national telephone survey, and more.

Also in the project, ALC will assign an expert assessment of Return-on-Investment studies to report on the economic value of libraries. The organization also will develop a library advocacy knowledge center for use by librarians and all who work to expand library support in the U.S. ALC is a national nonprofit that champions the role of libraries in American life. The program division of the council is Libraries for the Future.