The 2007 National Public Library Funding and Technology Access survey is closing on November 25, 2007 and the Illinois State Library needs your help to complete this survey.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation continues their efforts to bring high quality technology services to all communities. Many public libraries do not have enough funding to keep pace in our fast paced technology world. In turn, libraries have outdated computers and slow, if any, Internet access. The goal of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is to obtain enough stable funding to ensure they are able to meet library patrons’ needs for high-quality services and access to information.
In the fall of 2006, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded a grant to the American Library Association’s Office of Research and Statistics (ALA) to work with Florida State University’s Information Institute (FSU) to track library funding and technology trends on an annual basis to better understand how to improve support in those areas. These findings are compiled in the Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study. This year’s survey has been in the field since September 2, 2007, and will be closing on November 25, 2007.
This survey is vital to all of us! Upon completion of this survey we will have a better understanding of our library’s roles in providing access to the Internet and digital information. The survey data also gives national and state policymakers, library practitioners, and private funding organizations a better understanding of the issues libraries face, along with essential issues that need to be addressed in our communities. Data from past FSU and ALA studies has been used on behalf of public libraries in Congressional testimony, by the U.S. Census Bureau, and even by the U.S. Supreme Court. Finally, this information will inform the foundations’ grant making through our U.S. Libraries Initiative.
The Illinois State Library needs you to be a part of this ‘one of a kind’ national study by completing this survey as soon as possible. In order to have an accurate measurement of the status of funding and technology needs in the U.S. public libraries they must have a maximum number of responses, from us.
Please complete this online survey by November 25, 2007. The survey takes about 40 minutes to complete and the data you provide about your library will be instrumental for us and other library professional across the county, now and in the years to come.
Thank you for your continued support and your desire to help make our libraries all they can be! Anne Craig, Director, Illinois State Library