Friday, February 20, 2009

Library ROI: A Brief Webliography

First, a confession. I've been holding this list for months. Don Reynolds sent this to me back in the fall of 2008, and I've been meaning to post it every since. Today, the guilt finally overwhelmed me, so I went in and checked all the links, tossed out or updated the bad links, arranged the list in chronological order from oldest to newest, and threw myself on the mercy of the court.

Compiled by Don Reynolds, Past President of the Association of Rural and Small Libraries, and Director, Nolichucky Regional Library, Morristown, Tennessee
Updated February 20, 2009

Public Library Benefits Valuation Study. St. Louis Public Library, April 2001.

Library's Contribution to Your Community. Illinois Regional Library Systems, 2002/3.

Libraries: How they stack up. An OCLC Report. OCLC, 2003.

Value of Public Library Service. Massachusetts Library Association, October 2003. Also available: "Estimated retail value and Values explained" and Calculator work sheet

The Economic Impact of Public Libraries on South Carolina. January 2005.

Taxpayer Return-on-Investment (ROI) in Pennsylvania Public Libraries. Pennsylvania Library Association, September 2006.

Value for Money: Southwestern Ohio’s Return from Investment in Public Libraries. November 2006. Report Summary

Making Cities Stronger: Public Library Contributions to Local Economic Development. Urban Libraries Council, January 2007.

Worth Their Weight - An Assessment of the Evolving Field of Library Valuation. Americans for Libraries Council (Libraries for the Future), May 2007. Two notes:
1.) This report summarizes all the various valuation projects from around the country.
2.) I was having some trouble getting this to download, but was told by Libraries for the Future that the website issue is being addressed.

Update: Betha Gutsche from WebJunction offers this alternate site for finding "Worth Their Weight." Thanks, Betha!

Vermont Library Association’s Library Use Value Calculator - What is your library worth to you? August 2007. (Note: Follows Massachusetts model.)

Return on Investment for Public Libraries. Library Research Service (Colorado), 2007/8. Note: This site also includes numerous case studies of individual libraries. Individual ROI Calculator.

Return on Investment (ROI). North Suburban Library System (Illinois), 2008. (Note: Two calculators are available here, one for a library’s return on investment to the community, one for the ROI for an individual.)

Maine State Library’s Library Use Value Calculator. Updated 2008. Note: This approach also follows Massachusetts model.

New York Libraries: How They Stack Up! Revised October 2008. Printable brochure version, also revised October 2008


Anonymous said...

My office at ALA has maintained an ROI/Library Value bibliography for a few years. It was recently (1/2009) updated.
The link is

Denise M. Davis
Director, ALA Office for Research & Statistics

Alice said...

Thanks Denise!

Michael A. Golrick said...

Also there is a page that the public library in Eau Claire (WI) was maintaining [at least while I was there]. Other than not having the ALA page, I think it is still pretty complete. Here it is: