Insights Blog

All Hail Our Library Robot Overlords

Posted by Tom Bruno on May 05, 2016 at 11:14 AM

In October 2014 The Westport Library introduced robots Nancy and Vincent to our MakerSpace, generating a great deal of interest not only in library circles but in the international media as well. The two diminutive humanoid Nao Robots, made by the French company Aldebaran Robotics and purchased at a cost...


Where the Edge and the Center Meet — Driving Innovation in New York City’s Public Libraries

Posted by Julie Sandorf on April 12, 2016 at 10:30 AM

Over a century ago, Andrew Carnegie endowed the City of New York with an extraordinary and everlasting gift—the construction of 100 neighborhood public libraries across all five of the City’s boroughs. There are now 207 branches, serving over 40.5 million visitors annually—more people than all the City’s cultural institutions and...


Kansas City Library/Community Partnerships Support Equality

Posted by Gloria Jackson-Leathers on March 15, 2016 at 10:41 AM

Communities thrive when people have opportunity. Sadly, opportunity is not equally available, but partnerships between libraries and other community partners are helping to level the playing field. The Kansas City Public Library (KCPL), a case in point, is working with community partners to bridge the “digital divide” — a civil...


Libraries are Bridging the Digital Divide in Cities

Posted by Clarence Anthony on February 17, 2016 at 11:40 AM

Digital literacy is no longer a choice; access to high-speed Internet is essential for Americans to do everything from finding a job to applying for college to gaining health care coverage. Yet according to a recent analysis by Pew Research, 5 million households with school-aged children still do not have...


The Library as the Central Institution of the Knowledge Economy

Posted by Dr. Norman Jacknis on January 21, 2016 at 8:25 AM

Americans live in an economy in which an increasing number of us make a living based on the knowledge we have and we offer to others. One estimate, almost ten years ago, noted that only 40 percent of jobs had no significant knowledge tasks. With increased automation of those jobs, the percentage...


Aligning Library Services in Support of Community Goals

Posted by Susan Hildreth on January 12, 2016 at 9:57 AM

I believe that the future relevance and success of the public library is dependent upon the library’s deep knowledge and commitment to community growth and success.  Although many libraries have had stated commitments to community priorities, I do not think that we have been disciplined or strategic in effectively deploying...


Transformative Organizations: The Case of Philadelphia

Posted by Siobhan A. Reardon on January 10, 2016 at 9:31 AM

Philadelphia is a fascinating city. There is the promise of affordable housing and a location that cannot be beat; halfway between New York City and Washington, D.C. The population is growing thanks to immigrants who are making Philadelphia their home and college grads who are now staying in Philadelphia because...


On Open Doors, Community and Public Libraries

Posted by Amy Garmer on January 09, 2016 at 11:09 AM

In mid-August 2014, Scott Bonner performed an ordinary yet remarkable act: Bonner opened the doors of the public library and invited members of the community to come inside.  This was an ordinary act because librarians have been performing this simple gesture of welcome and inclusion for as long as there...


Libraries in the Exponential Age

Posted by Amy Garmer on January 08, 2016 at 9:48 AM

What happens if you shift the library to be the center of the community platform for innovation?   Thirty dynamic leaders and innovators from the public and private sectors – all involved in re-envisioning the ways in which public libraries can adapt to the...