Sometimes I think libraries have always been at one crossroads or another.
But a recent report from the Pew Research Center covers some of the crossroads that libraries may find themselves at today:
American libraries are buffeted by cross currents. Citizens believe that libraries are important community institutions and profess interest in libraries offering a range of new program possibilities. Yet, even as the public expresses interest in additional library services, there are signs that the share of Americans visiting libraries has edged downward over the past three years, although it is too soon to know whether or not this is a trend.
The report is divided into three chapters:
- Who Uses Libraries and What They Do at Their Libraries
- Libraries and Services for Learning, Key Groups and Economic Opportunities
- Lower Income Americans and Communities of Color More Likely to See Libraries as Community Anchors
Is your library at a crossroads? Whether or not you think so, the answer is probably “yes.”