Advocacy for public libraries

Advocacy was a hot topic at the Managing the Business of Libraries Forum held at an SLQ professional development forum in Noosa last week. In her presentation ‘Where are libraries heading?’, Christine McKenzie, IFLA’s Incoming President Elect 2017-19, raised advocacy as a key trend in future library services and encouraged all library staff to consider it as part of their role. Mylee Joseph of State Library of NSW focussed her presentation, ‘The Pitch: local advocacy and positioning for public libraries’, on opportunities for demonstrating the vital role of public libraries through community engagement and benchmarking, positioning the library as part of the solution, and influencing transformation in the industry.

Some of the recommended readings Mylee shared include the Shellharbour City Libraries & Museum Strategy 2024; the Sno-Isle Libraries 2016-2025 Capital Facilities Plan; the Australian Digital Inclusion Index; State Library of NSW’s Indigenous Spaces in Library Places strategy and the IFLA Trend Report.

State Library of Queensland’s data visualisation tool was also presented at the forum as a means of showcasing recent Queensland public library data and further professional development in the use of data will be progressed by SLQ.

The Regional Partnerships team at State Library is currently working to develop a range of tools and templates for use by public library staff in advocating the value of libraries to relevant stakeholders, including Council, staff and the community. We’d love to hear your ideas for resources that would be of most value to you and we will be seeking examples of how you have been a great advocate for your library.

Comment below to share your ideas or needs or email for more information.

Presentations from the Managing the Business of Libraries Forum can be downloaded from the Training Calendar on Public Libraries’ Connect.

Noosa forum workshop

Using data to advocate for public libraries – workshop at Noosa forum.