Understanding our value; assessing the nature of the impact of library services

David Bawden, Andrew Calvert, Lyn Robinson, Christine Urquhart, Colin Bray, John Amosford


This paper reports an approach to assessing the nature of the impact and benefit of library services, based on the concepts introduced in Urquhart's Value Project for healthcare information services. Two studies are described and compared. A project in the City of London public library service examined the benefits obtained from specific information requests. A project in several public library services in South West England examined the value obtained from the borrowing and reading of books, linking this with categories of learning objectives. These studies showed the promise, and also the difficulties, of adapting existing impact frameworks to understand the nature of the impact and value of library services


Public libraries; evaluation; impact; value; user surveys

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ISSN 1756-1086 (Online)