In 2019, more Americans went to the library than to the movies. Yes, really.

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The US film industry may have generated revenues somewhere in the region of $40 billion last year, but it seems Hollywood still has plenty of work to do if it wants to compete with that most hallowed of American institutions: the public library

Yes, according to a recent Gallup poll (the first such survey since 2001), visiting the local library remains by far the most common cultural activity Americans engage in. As reported earlier today by Justin McCarthy:

“Visiting the library remains the most common cultural activity Americans engage in, by far. The average 10.5 trips to the library U.S. adults report taking in 2019 exceeds their participation in eight other common leisure activities. Americans attend live music or theatrical events and visit national or historic parks roughly four times a year on average and visit museums and gambling casinos 2.5 times annually. Trips to amusement or theme parks (1.5) and zoos (.9) are the least common activities among this list.”

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Cities using innovation and imagination in their infrastructure

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Louisville’s Big Four Bridge, built in 1895 and later known as “The Bridge to Nowhere,” reopened to pedestrian and bicycle traffic after a $30 million-plus renovation.

Ron Littlefield: Recently, I visited two cohort communities of the City Accelerator, a program sponsored in part by Governing, sister publication to Government Technology: Louisville and Nashville. I expect to be in the third city, Philadelphia, before the end of the year. The purpose of these visits is to meet face to face with the mayors and their principal innovation staff, to experience how their innovation efforts fit within the context of the community and to see how the City Accelerator project is affecting the overall climate for innovation. In simple terms, I want to sense the air of change and creativity in each place.

 

 

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Pew report finds Millennials are avid readers and library users

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Forty-three percent of Millennials say that they read a book in some format (print, audiobook, or ebook) every day.

Lisa Peet:  In September, the Pew Research Center Internet Project issued a new report on the library habits of Americans under 30. “Younger Americans and Public Libraries” examines the ways Millennials engage with libraries, and how they see libraries’ roles in their lives and communities. The good news is that young people are reading as much as older adults, and are even more likely to have read a book in the past 12 months. Also, their library use is holding steady. Nonetheless, the report warns, their levels of engagement vary in a number of ways.

 

 

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The Disruptive Nature of the Sharing Economy: Finding the Next Great Opportunities

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Futurist Thomas Frey: Many of us suffer from a sinister and often contagious disorder, something I call just-in-case disease.

We own toolboxes full of tools, just in case we need to fix something. We have kitchens full of appliances just in case we want to prepare a meal. We have cars in our garages just in case we need to go somewhere. We even have closets full of clothes we know we’ll never wear just in case we get desperate.

 

 

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Libraries and librarians are more relevant than ever in the digital age

Harold Washington library in Chicago.

The need for libraries, and librarians has been placed under scrutiny due to the advent of the internet. Everything in print is now available online.  So do we really need physical libraries and librarians anymore?  Of course we do…now, more than ever before.

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Our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming: Neil Gaiman

Libraries and librarians need to exist and help foster a love of reading and places in which reading can occur.

Neil Gaiman gives The Reading Agency annual lecture on the future of reading and libraries. He explains why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation for all citizens.

 

 

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Academic libraries are shaping the future of learning and research

Saltire Center at Glasgow Caledonian University.

Brian Sullivan, a librarian at Alfred University, wrote “the academic library has died” in an opinion piece responding to the gloomy tone of a 2011 report on the future of academic libraries. “One reason for cause of death is that library buildings were converted into computer labs, study spaces and headquarters for informational-technology departments.”

 

 

 

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Will the library of the future have books?

Some libraries around the world are changing.

While most of the 100,000+ libraries in the U.S. will likely continue to function as they always have, moving books around shelves and holding areas, to and from patrons — at least for the foreseeable future — some libraries around the world are changing and this could be the start of a trend.

 

 

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