The Collection All Around: Sharing Our Cities, Towns, and Natural Places

ALA Editions. May. 2017. 134p. illus. notes. index. ISBN 9780838915059. pap. $57. PRO MEDIA
Davis (branch manager, San Diego P.L.) is an advocate for improving public access to nonlibrary community resources—what he calls "the collection all around." Given socioeconomic and racial disparities in access to cultural, educational, and recreational opportunities, libraries could enrich people's lives by doing more to address barriers and coordinate community partnerships. The author offers examples from across the country of individual libraries and systems relying on the traditional strengths of the profession to engage in community planning and increase awareness of community resources while securing greater support for themselves. Logistical challenges for enhanced interorganizational cooperation include the need for integrated library automation systems that accommodate nonlibrary participants and related data security concerns. How can museums, recreational venues, and other potential stakeholders be convinced that "community membership" access would be a win-win for themselves and the public rather than a threat to their financial stability? Who pays for the administrative costs? While Davis cites many publications that address components of enhanced local access service, the Urban Libraries Council's online report "Civic Engagement: Stepping Up to the Civic Engagement Challenge" provides a comprehensive overview.
VERDICT Recommended for outreach librarians seeking new ideas for community partnerships.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing