The national story continues: twelve new case studies underline importance of public library computers
Twelve case studies evidencing the continuing importance of public access computers in UK libraries have been published in a new book ‘More Short Stories from the People’s Network’.
The stories have been compiled for publication by library software provider, Lorensbergs, and supported by CILIP, the UK’s library and information association. The book launches at the CILIP annual conference in Brighton this week. It shares the experiences of twelve public library authorities and provides vital insights into the progress achieved and challenges overcome when helping customers to access and use the internet.
Many opportunities to participate and progress are available only to those with the means and skills to get online. It’s essential for many life critical tasks, yet 10% of UK households are without connectivity to the internet, and many more are without broadband. Millions make use of library computers – collectively known as the People’s Network – to apply for jobs, benefits, find new opportunities and remain socially included.
The book is the second volume of case studies on how the People’s Network remains an essential piece of national infrastructure provided by the UK’s public library service. Its chapters describe the many initiatives taken by library staff to keep their communities connected and inclusive.
Libraries Minister Michael Ellis said: "Internet access is now an integral part of a modern library service. Public libraries offer both the facilities and the practical support to help people get online and develop their digital skills. This is hugely important to society, now and in the future.
"I welcome this publication, which helps the sector share experiences, learning and best practice to improve services for library users across the country."
Anna Crilly, Managing Director of Lorensbergs, comments: “This new collection continues to communicate the national story of the value of the people’s network. Today, nearly half of libraries are seeing requests for help with digital skills rising, with the vast remainder needing to satisfy a constant level of demand for this support from their communities. These stories provide the narrative behind the statistics and explore the difference libraries are making to people’s lives.”
Ayub Khan, CILIP President, who provides a foreword to the book, said: “These stories offer a compelling message on the continuing importance of the People’s Network. It’s a book that deserves to be read by all those with a stake in the welfare and development of our society.”
The ebook version is now available from Lorensbergs’ website here.
The CILIP Conference takes place on 4 and 5 July in Brighton. Further information is available here.
Philippa Bryant, Head of Marketing, Lorensbergs
Mark Taylor, Director of External Relations, CILIP
020 7255 0654
07792 635 305
Notes to editors
About Lorensbergs (www.lorensbergs.co.uk)
Lorensbergs offers a range of market-leading software solutions with expert advice to match. Our range of intelligent and customisable PC booking and online booking solutions, netloan and connect2, have been designed to streamline booking processes and improve efficiencies in libraries and local authorities, universities and colleges. Lorensbergs offers consultancy services and training, working closely with customers to enhance service provision for library, university and public service users and patrons.
About CILIP (www.cilip.org.uk)
CILIP, the library and information association is the leading voice for the information, knowledge management and library profession. CILIP’s goal is to put information and library skills and professional values at the heart of a democratic, equal and prosperous society.
CILIP is a registered charity, no. 313014.