Building public library community connections through cultural planning.Public libraries increasingly are places for ideas and for discussion. They support citizenship, promote the traditions of free speech, stimulate the imagination and encourage ideas, contribute to building social capital and generally they are managed by skilled and respected staff who are adaptable a·dapt·a·ble
Capable of adapting or of being adapted.
a·dapta·bil , creative and forward thinking. Libraries can have a far reaching impact on the culture of a community, not just by their physical presence but also by the wide range of cultural activities and learning opportunities that they offer. Cultural planning now provides librarians This is a list of people who have practised as a librarian and are well-known, either for their contributions to the library profession or primarily in some other field. with a new tool to build on already strong cultural foundations. Edited version of a paper given at the SA public libraries seminar November November: see month. 2004
Public librarians, by looking for Looking for
In the context of general equities, this describing a buy interest in which a dealer is asked to offer stock, often involving a capital commitment. Antithesis of in touch with. all opportunities and by taking a chance, will grow despite strong competition for services and resources. By never missing a chance and by engaging in cultural planning in particular, they can build strong and interesting connections to their communities including to their councils. An example is the following true story.
The new library manager at Seachange Point had only been in the job a few weeks and had made some impact already by attending council meetings, sitting quietly in the public gallery and just getting a feel for the place. Councillors had noticed and asked the general manager why he was there. They were intrigued and also impressed im·press 1
tr.v. im·pressed, im·press·ing, im·press·es
1. To affect strongly, often favorably: that anyone would be interested.
During his third week of attendance, in matters of urgency at the beginning of the session, the library manager was surprised, along with everyone else in the chambers when one councillor stood up and proposed that Seachange Point needed to celebrate its heritage and preserve its past. The councillor then tabled a motion recommending that the council receive a report exploring the feasibility of developing a local museum. With a wink A short control signal in telephony operations. It can be a single pulse, a brief interruption of a continuous tone, a change of bits or a change in polarity of the signal. For example, a momentary interruption (the wink) of a continuous, single-frequency tone is a signal that the and a nod one of the councillor's mates seconded the motion. It was adopted without fuss and the council then moved on to other matters.
The next day, at the regular weekly debriefing de·brief·ing
1. The act or process of debriefing or of being debriefed.
2. The information imparted during the process of being debriefed.
Noun 1. the library manager had with the divisional director, he raised the museum matter. The director looked perplexed per·plexed
1. Filled with confusion or bewilderment; puzzled.
2. Full of complications or difficulty; involved.
[Middle English, from perplex, confused and indicated that she had no idea where the motion came from, except that the councillor proposing it had recently been on his first overseas trip and perhaps was influenced by that experience. 'Anyway' the director said 'It won't go anywhere. I'll write a brief report and it will be knocked on the head due to cost and lack of interest. It's really a matter for the historical society anyway, not council.' At this point, the library manager, took a deep breath and hiding his excitement, quietly said 'Do you want me to prepare the report? The library has quite a good local studies collection and maybe this is a way to promote it. I think there are grant funds for local history and as a regional growth area, this project might attract tourism funds.'
The director, who had experienced quite a torrid time in council the previous night with a report of playing fields subsiding sub·side
intr.v. sub·sid·ed, sub·sid·ing, sub·sides
1. To sink to a lower or normal level.
2. To sink or settle down, as into a sofa.
3. To sink to the bottom, as a sediment.
4. and the tender for the new child care centre, was only too happy to hand over the matter to the library manager. For his part, the library manager had, without fuss, opened the door to an expanding cultural portfolio. Life was suddenly going to become more interesting--the community needed to be consulted, museum delivery models and resource needs could be explored, links to the local studies collection could be developed and contacts with adjacent councils made.
Over the next five years, the Years, The
the seven decades of Eleanor Pargiter’s life. [Br. Lit.: Benét, 1109]
See : Time library manager's position evolved into library and heritage resource centre manager and then into cultural services manager with a broad range of responsibilities in service delivery as well as cultural project and facility management. In seeing the chance and taking it and by stepping out of the traditional narrower library role, the manager embraced the opportunity. In so doing he moved from library planning to cultural planning.
Libraries and their communities
This paper explores the community building opportunities presented by cultural planning. Libraries have many communities--first their diverse user community, secondly the corporate or management community, thirdly their community of local service deliverers or partners. Each library staff team is another community.
Particularly focused on are examples of public librarians engaging in cultural planning and the benefits of those activities. Finally, strategies are provided that have worked in other places that might be useful in stimulating ideas and providing encouragement. These strategies all demonstrate that cultural planning is based on a commitment to building connections, to respecting and encouraging creativity, to integrated planning In amphibious operations, the planning accomplished by commanders and staffs of corresponding echelons from parallel chains of command within the amphibious task force. See also amphibious operation; amphibious task force. , to strengthening facilities and developing communities through consultation, partnerships, a commitment to inclusion and to taking risks.
What is cultural planning?
First, it is not new. Secondly, it has a broader focus than the arts.
There are different definitions of it but suffice suf·fice
v. suf·ficed, suf·fic·ing, suf·fic·es
1. To meet present needs or requirements; be sufficient: These rations will suffice until next week. it to say that the process of cultural planning at the local and regional level assists councils to integrate and focus their activities in a systematic and strategic way in order to acknowledge and celebrate local identity and distinctiveness and more broadly to enrich the quality of people's lives. This comprehends all people in the community, including those experiencing disadvantage, as well as culturally and linguistically diverse (Cald) groups, children, young people, Indigenous people and women.
This ambitious remit To transmit or send. To relinquish or surrender, such as in the case of a fine, punishment, or sentence.
An individual, for example, might remit money to pay bills.
TO REMIT. To annul a fine or forfeiture.
2. requires councils to extend beyond the arts to make strategic connections to the wide range of functions that contribute to community well being and which influence how a community experiences its place. In each place this is different, but after recognising the role of the arts and creativity at the core of culture, it could include aspects of tourism, heritage, education, the environment and sport. The cultural industries--including art galleries, cinemas, video shops, band nights in hotels, bookshops, graphic design, festivals, architecture--are also a component of cultural planning, integrating culture into local economic development. In some places information and communications technology Noun 1. communications technology - the activity of designing and constructing and maintaining communication systems
engineering, technology - the practical application of science to commerce or industry (ICT (1) (Information and Communications Technology) An umbrella term for the information technology field. See IT.
(2) (International Computers and Tabulators) See ICL.
1. (testing) ICT - In Circuit Test. ) may be a component of cultural planning. As the responsibilities of local government expand, this strategic linking becomes even more critical.
Cultural planning has much in common with other disciplines such as environmental, social and economic planning economic planning, control and direction of economic activity by a central public authority. In its modern usage, economic planning tends to be pitted against the laissez-faire philosophy which developed in the 18th cent. . It requires an assessment of the local situation (often called a map or audit) and identification of trends and needs, the development of future direction options, the documentation of significant issues and opportunities, all leading to a set of proposed actions. Effective cultural planning generally results in the development of a local cultural plan as just one of the suite of planning tools available to inform local government area wide planning.
Cultural plans can also be developed for regions, suburbs and precincts pre·cinct
a. A subdivision or district of a city or town under the jurisdiction of or patrolled by a specific unit of its police force.
b. or neighbourhoods. They can be developed nationally eg Paul Keating's Creative nation (1) policy. Cultural plans and strategies can be developed as a component of other plans such as economic development or heritage plans. This is especially relevant when dealing with small local government areas with limited resources and staff. Cultural plans can also integrate into urban regeneration Regeneration (biology)
The process by which an animal restores a lost part of its body. Broadly defined, the term can include wound healing, tissue repair, and many kinds of restorative activities. projects where specific sites are targeted for revitalisation Noun 1. revitalisation - bringing again into activity and prominence; "the revival of trade"; "a revival of a neglected play by Moliere"; "the Gothic revival in architecture"
resurgence, revitalization, revival, revivification and development.
Overall, cultural planning aims at a strategic alignment of council's cultural assets and resources, programs, policies and services with the organisation's overall planning and management priorities. Cultural plans require flexibility and adaptability a·dapt·a·ble
Capable of adapting or of being adapted.
a·dapta·bil so that they can be adjusted as circumstances CIRCUMSTANCES, evidence. The particulars which accompany a fact.
2. The facts proved are either possible or impossible, ordinary and probable, or extraordinary and improbable, recent or ancient; they may have happened near us, or afar off; they are public or change and communities evolve.
We are familiar with the triple bottom line and the focus on ensuring long term sustainability by the fostering of social, economic and environmental sustainability. More recently cultural sustainability has been added to the equation. Cultural planning in this environment has come into its own. As an example, the City of Port Phillip The City of Port Phillip is a Local Government Area in Victoria, Australia. It is located on the northern shore of Port Phillip Bay, south of the Melbourne Central Business District. It has an area of 20.62 km². As at 2006, the estimated resident population is 85,674 . in Victoria has taken the lead in its approach to corporate planning by actively acknowledging the integration of the four pillars Four Pillars may refer to:
Port Phillip, also commonly called Port Phillip Bay or (locally) just the Bay, is a large bay in southern Victoria, Australia. , the question of cultural sustainability is included as a core aspect of all planning and the potential cultural impact of initiatives, programs and services is assessed as a requirement across the span of council business. (2)
This is cultural planning in its latest manifestation man·i·fes·ta·tion
An indication of the existence, reality, or presence of something, especially an illness.
(man´ifestā´sh , but it has a long history. During a visit to ancient Ephesus in Turkey I was struck by the cultural planning that must have taken place there more than 2000 years ago. The civic leaders must have applied cultural planning values to ensure that facilities such as the library in the town centre, the Temple and the amphitheatre were accessible, integrated into the urban fabric of the city, acting as landmarks alerting residents and visitors that this was a civilised Adj. 1. civilised - having a high state of culture and development both social and technological; "terrorist acts that shocked the civilized world"
educated - possessing an education (especially having more than average knowledge) city that recognised the role of the arts and culture in building community confidence and well being, whilst also recognising a diversity of need.
More recently cultural planning has emerged in most Western democracies, notably the UK, Australia, the US and Canada, as a significant local policy initiative. It is a compulsory Wikipedia does not currently have an encyclopedia article for .
You may like to search Wiktionary for "" instead.
To begin an article here, feel free to [ edit this page], but please do not create a mere dictionary definition. aspect of local planning in England, and is well developed at the local level in most Australian states Noun 1. Australian state - one of the several states constituting Australia
province, state - the territory occupied by one of the constituent administrative districts of a nation; "his state is in the deep south" . In NSW NSW New South Wales
Noun 1. NSW - the agency that provides units to conduct unconventional and counter-guerilla warfare
Naval Special Warfare the Ministry for the Arts early in 2004 launched Cultural planning guidelines guidelines,
n.pl a set of standards, criteria, or specifications to be used or followed in the performance of certain tasks. (3) as a tool to assist councils to integrate cultural priorities into their suite of strategic plans. This is an important initiative. It acknowledges that cultural considerations, including the arts, are legitimate aspects of council activities and that they are an essential element in achieving local sustainability.
The development of the NSW guidelines also encourages local integrated planning, helping to break down the silos that have developed in many councils. They provide an opportunity to bring many cultural services in from the margins, to take an active role in strategic and integrated planning and program development. Cultural planning is therefore particularly relevant for many libraries at the local level that often find themselves isolated from decision making and left out of the planning loop.
In other cases cultural facility managers, including librarians, are actually engaged in cultural planning but do not have all the tools to confidently promote this new role eg at a recent seminar I heard a cultural facility manager (an art gallery director) say 'We are moving out of the cultural area and into tourism and entertainment'. Moving out of the cultural area? An art gallery?
What that manager was actually saying was that his management role was shifting and expanding from a focus on just the visual arts visual arts npl → artes fpl plásticas
visual arts npl → arts mpl plastiques
visual arts npl → to a broad cultural response inclusive of inclusive of
Taking into consideration or account; including. tourism and entertainment, as well as other aspects that make up cultural life in that place. A library manager could make a similar statement in relation to the contemporary phenomenon where libraries are shifting away from a collection focus to broader programs that specifically target the needs and interests of their diverse communities. Becoming familiar with the language of cultural planning might be all that these managers need.
Where does the public library actually fit in the practice of cultural planning?
I am passionate about libraries and never lose a chance to promote them in my work around the country. And I promote them primarily by simply stating that they are the key cultural institution in their community. Primarily libraries are in the cultural sector and just one of their key cultural roles is to support information access utilising technology. Being the key cultural institution, a proud claim that can be justified simply by reminding everyone of user statistics, doors open in the community and in council. So how does cultural planning build and strengthen connections to one of the library's key communities, the local council? Here are a few examples.
Cultural planning can bring librarians in from the margins
By loudly and continuously claiming your library's place as the key cultural institution, your role in contributing to cultural planning and development will be acknowledged. You could be invited to take a role as a member of the council's cultural committees/working parties etc.
As a member of the cultural committee, you will be presented with opportunities to promote the library and its cultural programs as well as the skills of the library team.
Take a chance and go further by offering to coordinate the cultural audit or map. This is a core building block for a cultural plan and the library is centrally positioned with access to much of the primary material--the local community directory, CData from the Bureau of Statistics including data from the specialist ABS (Automatic Backup System) See backup program. Centre for Culture and Recreation Research located in Adelaide. (4)
Public librarians are unique in that they have regular access to users who will be keen to provide up to date data on local cultural assets and resources such as organisations, collections, heritage buildings, gardens, cultural businesses.
By taking an active role and making an important contribution, you will be able to ensure that your library is incorporated into the cultural plan as a key component not just as a footnote Text that appears at the bottom of a page that adds explanation. It is often used to give credit to the source of information. When accumulated and printed at the end of a document, they are called "endnotes." . Strategies that you want prioritised will be included in the plan. As you make your arguments for cultural integration, others will begin to better understand your potential.
Some cultural plans do not mention the public library. They focus narrowly on the arts and community cultural development. When they address heritage, they focus on preserving and conserving con·serve
v. con·served, con·serv·ing, con·serves
a. To protect from loss or harm; preserve: built heritage. The library's local studies collection is not even mentioned. Public library local history collections are national treasures. They provide an insight into local history and promote local identity. They are unique aspects of the national estate and are significantly undervalued Undervalued
A stock or other security that is trading below its true value.
The difficulty is knowing what the "true" value actually is. Analysts will usually recommend an undervalued stock with a strong buy rating. .
Opportunities are presented in the cultural plan to identify links between local historical society activity and public libraries and to identify strategies that encourage libraries and historical societies to work together on joint initiatives and shared projects such as research, exhibition, education and publishing.
There are also cultural plans that support creative skills development, focusing on the creative arts where the courses are arts workshop based. They do not consider reading and literacy or cross cultural awareness skills as relevant to the cultural plan. They do not include skills development in family history research or technology access. These plans have generally been developed in isolation from the public library and tragically present many missed opportunities for the community and librarians.
Librarians thinking strategically
This is another way to build your connections to council. Writers in residence and artists in residence programs in schools and universities are common.
One of my experiences as a library manager was a cultural planner in residence project. In 1996 when the cultural planner in residence program took place over a week at Warringah Council
Warringah is a local council area in the Northern Beaches region of Sydney, Australia. on the northern beaches of Sydney it was a pioneering effort. (The planner was Charles Landry, director of the UK cultural planning consultancy Comedia).
Landry spent one week in Warringah as the guest of the library service which used the project to collaborate with other council staff as well as with adjacent councils and community groups. Over the five days he had a heavy schedule talking and presenting to the councillors, to the senior executive, to regional librarians, to the regional organisation of councils. He gave a main address that was advertised across Sydney and attracted a full house. He had interviews with community leaders and opinion makers. The program attracted considerable media interest and he also gave newspaper and radio interviews.
This planner in residence program was a one off. Warringah Council at that time was quite well advanced in its cultural planning and was establishing itself as a regional leader. The visit helped to promote cultural planning to key stakeholders Stakeholders
All parties that have an interest, financial or otherwise, in a firm-stockholders, creditors, bondholders, employees, customers, management, the community, and the government. in council as well as in adjacent councils. It provided a fresh approach and some evaluation of progress and importantly it positioned the library management team as major players in cross council planning. It demonstrated the capacity to think creatively, take risks and contribute to city wide strategy. In a short time the project embedded Inserted into. See embedded system. cultural planning as a legitimate and fruitful fruit·ful
a. Producing fruit.
b. Conducive to productivity; causing to bear in abundance: fruitful soil.
2. library responsibility.
Librarians encouraging public art
Councils that are just setting out in cultural planning often begin by feeling their way. One of the small steps that helps change attitudes is the introduction of public art and decorative design into landscaping and capital works projects. This is a really interesting aspect of cultural planning and librarians can take the lead in this area when new libraries or library extensions are under consideration.
Successful public art projects are based on similar foundations to cultural plans--research and the bringing together of integrated teams including artists with imagination at the core. Public art projects provide opportunities to celebrate local identity and distinctiveness. Success also requires a commitment to community engagement.
Put your toe in the water by insisting that your new library must incorporate public art and design into its built fabric. Gather examples of public art and design integrated into libraries and civic buildings and illustrate how art makes the building and its surrounds more interesting. Let everybody know that public art can be paid for from the building's capital budget. Provide examples of how funding works--it is widely documented. Promote the value of buildings whose design enhances the public domain. Mention the drawcard for visitors and tourists that imaginative and integrated art presents, as well as the benefits to the new building project team of working with creative thinkers and problem solvers.
If your council does not have a public art policy and plan, take the lead in drafting one in consultation with a small hand picked working party of your colleagues across council who may be responsible for its implementation eg landscape designers, urban planners List of urban planners chronological by initial year of plan.
There are certainly model policies available to use as a reference. This is your chance to move out of your comfort zone, to take a stand against unsightly un·sight·ly
adj. un·sight·li·er, un·sight·li·est
Unpleasant or offensive to look at; unattractive. See Synonyms at ugly.
un art in inappropriate sites and to demonstrate your capacity to take on complex cultural planning responsibilities.
Building new libraries as cultural facilities
Australia is in a cycle of new library building and this presents opportunities for public librarians to establish connections to other sections of council as well as to other levels of government. In addition to incorporating meeting rooms and children's' activity centres, many new public libraries now include gallery space and lifelong learning Lifelong learning is the concept that "It's never too soon or too late for learning", a philosophy that has taken root in a whole host of different organisations. Lifelong learning is attitudinal; that one can and should be open to new ideas, decisions, skills or behaviors. facilities. Considering that most libraries host regular and popular exhibitions of local history images, the addition of a gallery or exhibition space simply enhances their role in broad cultural development.
Galleries in libraries need programming and specialist curatorial cu·ra·tor
One who manages or oversees, as the administrative director of a museum collection or a library.
[Middle English curatour, legal guardian, from Old French curateur skills. Librarians will need to collaborate with other sections of council to plan and market relevant exhibitions, and with other government agencies to source displays and to ensure exhibition quality.
The integration of learning laboratories into public libraries builds on their information technology access roles but also links back to the foundations of public libraries as educational resources. It builds on, and enhances, the role of local community centres and provides councils with opportunities to integrate community and cultural development and to build social capital.
In planning library developments which extend their library's cultural roles, staff develop new skills and build valuable connections that contribute to effective cultural program delivery.
Establishing links across council
The planning and development of new libraries also presents opportunities to consider colocating facilities in order to achieve economies of scale as well as collaborative opportunities.
In Bathurst NSW the library is colocated via a shared foyer, with the regional gallery. Friends of the Library are invited to gallery activities and the library and the gallery plan school holiday activity programs together.
In Gordon, in metropolitan Sydney, the central library is built above the police station, and shares its foyer with the youth drop in centre and the family history group. It also has an enclosed en·close also in·close
tr.v. en·closed, en·clos·ing, en·clos·es
1. To surround on all sides; close in.
2. To fence in so as to prevent common use: enclosed the pasture. courtyard For alternative meanings of the word "court", see: Court (disambiguation).
A court or courtyard is an enclosed area, often a space enclosed by a building that is open to the sky. , known as the Secret Garden, that is used for storytelling Storytelling
semi-legendary fabulist of ancient Greece. [Gk. Lit.: Harvey, 10]
Baron traveler grossly embellishes his experiences. [Ger. Lit. sessions but also by teenagers after school. It incorporates a beautiful mosaic seat, lawn and shade trees. Through careful planning and imaginative design, the space has not become exclusively used by just one section of the community. Rather it is secure and safe, loved by tiny tots, by teens and by older people. It is also 'owned' by various sections of council which worked together to ensure its success.
Librarians thinking regionally
Librarians are highly regarded for their spirit of cooperation. They have a fine track record in networking information, sharing resources and generally working together as a profession to enhance service delivery. In particular, public librarians have encouraged regional cooperation. Cultural planning provides an opportunity to enhance that established role.
In some places it will be a regional cultural plan or framework that has more chance of success. Due to limited resources, or lack of commitment or strategic timing, librarians can influence regional planning regional planning: see city planning. by never letting a chance go by to initiate discussion and provide support for the development of a regional cultural plan focusing on the needs of a region rather than just one local government area. Work with relevant officers to encourage this initiative and call on your library colleagues in adjacent councils to collaborate to pull the operation together. Share the load and, at the same time, strengthen your regional connections.
The examples described above are dependent on librarians taking the lead in encouraging creative connections to council and to council management. They require librarians to step out of their comfort zone to become advocates for an expanded role for the public library as a cultural hub in the community. They require librarians to demonstrate their capacity to plan and manage programs and resources within an increasingly competitive environment, to be critical and rigorous in focusing on priorities but also capable of broad strategic thinking.
These cultural planning activities are underpinned by librarians demonstrating their ability to rise above the silo mentality men·tal·i·ty
The sum of a person's intellectual capabilities or endowment. and to work across council on cultural programs and projects that will make a positive difference to people's lives and which enhance and celebrate local identity.
However to be successful in cultural planning librarians must also develop and promote their skills in building connections to their local communities. One way of doing this is by taking an active role in community engagement, community consultation and community representation. These are all key components in building a cultural plan that specifically reflects a community and its cultural needs and aspirations aspirations npl → aspiraciones fpl (= ambition); ambición f
aspirations npl (= hopes, ambition) → aspirations fpl .
All cultural plans are different. Although they might follow similar structures, the content of each plan must reflect local distinctiveness and diversity. Because public libraries have an acknowledged role as the community's cultural hub, librarians have a unique opportunity to develop imaginative and creative ways to make contact with a wide range of people and to engage them in providing input into the development of the cultural plan.
Public library users are very diverse. They represent all ages, sexes, classes and ethnic groups. They are of many different backgrounds, represent a variety of lifestyles and education levels and have many different ways of expressing themselves through customs, religious beliefs and the arts.
One of the challenges of cultural planning is the difficulty in engaging with a broad cross section of the community. Building a cultural plan needs input not just from the vested interests vested interest
1. Law A right or title, as to present or future possession of an estate, that can be conveyed to another.
2. A fixed right granted to an employee under a pension plan.
3. and the single issue groups, but from Indigenous people, disadvantaged This article or section may contain original research or unverified claims.
Please help Wikipedia by adding references. See the for details.
This article has been tagged since September 2007. groups, unemployed people Noun 1. unemployed people - people who are involuntarily out of work (considered as a group); "the long-term unemployed need assistance"
plural, plural form - the form of a word that is used to denote more than one , people from Cald communities. Young people and children should be consulted as well as people with disabilities, business groups and the creative community.
To be effective, consultation in relation to cultural planning cannot be a single event. To really reflect local interests and cultural aspirations, consultations must occur regularly. Public libraries with their very diverse user base and their extended opening hours opening hours open npl → heures fpl d'ouverture
opening hours open npl → Öffnungszeiten pl are well positioned to tap into community interest and host ongoing community engagement programs.
Making the library available for meetings and workshops is a start. Uing library users for survey feedback is another opportunity. Scheduling cultural plan related guest speakers for the Friends of the Library functions presents another opportunity. Engaging with local school teachers through professional librarian (1) A person who works in the data library and keeps track of the tapes and disks that are stored and logged out for use. Also known as a "file librarian" or "media librarian." See data library.
(2) See CA-Librarian. networks and with disadvantaged groups through literacy programs presents opportunities for librarians to build effective connections to the community, using cultural planning as a focus.
Linking cultural planning to core public library roles
If we focus on the core roles of libraries then we can make many connections between the library, the community and cultural planning. It is heartening heart·en
tr.v. heart·ened, heart·en·ing, heart·ens
To give strength, courage, or hope to; encourage. See Synonyms at encourage.
Adj. 1. to see how core public library roles have remained largely unchanged over a hundred years. Fundamentally, they still are
* education and learning support
* literacy and reading
* community cultural hub
Despite changing social and economic environments, public libraries have maintained their well respected roles in these key areas. In a recent 'Focus on the future' thinktank conducted by the Australian Library and Information Association The Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) is a professional organisation for the Australian library and information services sector. Based in Canberra, its membership is open to individuals and organisations, the only membership requirement is an interest in the , information literacy Several conceptions and definitions of information literacy have become prevalent. For example, one conception defines information literacy in terms of a set of competencies that an informed citizen of an information society ought to possess to participate intelligently and was identified as a main area of activity for libraries. When we talk about literacy, we mean reading as well as information literacy. By instilling in·still also in·stil
tr.v. in·stilled, in·still·ing, in·stills also in·stils
1. To introduce by gradual, persistent efforts; implant: "Morality . . . the love of books and learning, and the appreciation of music and film, by fostering ideas exchange and encouraging the development of skills which enhance access to technology based information, librarians can make an important contribution to the development of cultural connections in their communities.
And we can expect that the cultural role of the library in developing community cohesion Community cohesion refers to the aspect of togetherness exhibited by members of a community. Characterised by similar cultures, lifestyes, family lineage or relations, neighbourhood or any other bonding factors of human living, togetherness in communities is a very cherished trait through the support of lifelong learning will grow over the next ten years as the baby boomers See generation X. wind back from full time work and seek to develop new and stimulating skills and interests.
Some library managers believe that information literacy is the role of the education sector. I have heard public librarians say that it is not their role to enhance the library's place as a cultural hub. I have challenged public librarians to shift resources from preschoolers to teens in response to expressed cultural needs in their communities. Perhaps these librarians are in denial in denial Psychiatry To be in a state of denying the existence or effects of an ego defense mechanism. See Denial. or overwhelmed o·ver·whelm
tr.v. o·ver·whelmed, o·ver·whelm·ing, o·ver·whelms
1. To surge over and submerge; engulf: waves overwhelming the rocky shoreline.
a. by the complexities of managing public libraries in the 21st century. Perhaps they are focused on day to day issues and have not been able to grasp the opportunities presented by cultural planning and development. They have probably let many chances go by, and continue to do so.
What are the strategies that have worked and have delivered stronger cultural connections to the community? What are the actions that embed em·bed also im·bed
v. em·bed·ded, em·bed·ding, em·beds
1. To fix firmly in a surrounding mass: embed a post in concrete; fossils embedded in shale. cultural planning as an ongoing library responsibility and not just an isolated project? Here is a start, drawn from Australia and from overseas
* In Ku-ring-gai on Sydney's north shore, the council sought to celebrate Indigenous culture and reconciliation even though the area has very few residents from that culture. It turned to the library to make this initiative a priority and the library staff in turn led the way by making contact with local Indigenous leaders. In consultation with the local land council and schools the library has developed a special Indigenous collection. Council has an active participation in the annual regional Indigenous arts festival An arts festival or art fair is a festival that focuses on the visual arts, but which may also focus on other arts.
Arts festivals in the visual arts are exhibitions. and regularly invites Aboriginal storytellers to visit the library to share their memories and dreaming. In this way a greater awareness and understanding of Indigenous history and culture has developed, with Indigenous culture featuring as a significant aspect of the council's 2004 cultural plan.
* At the Ideas Stores, (5) the new name for the public library system in Tower Hamlets Tower Hamlets, inner borough (1991 pop. 153,500), of Greater London, SE England. Tower Hamlets was formed in 1965 by the merger of the metropolitan boroughs of Bethnal Green, Poplar, and Stepney. in London, they have a program that encourages 'Idea champions'. This invites young people to get involved in delivering creative and stimulating learning services to 16 to 19 year olds. They train the peer workers to participate and to motivate. The library has built connections to the council's youth workers but also to local schools and colleges. It uses the arts and culture as a principal development tool in supporting local youth culture. Youth culture is generally a vital element in most cultural plans and the library's active role in supporting young people often legitimises this.
* On the NSW mid north coast, a new writers association (6) has been established to assist the many professional and amateur writers who live and work in the region. They contribute to the area's social and economic life and local librarians and representatives from writers groups have formed the association to attract the resources needed to assist development in the writing sector. This initiative has raised awareness of the role of the arts and culture in economic development and supports the inclusion of strategies related to the cultural industries as central components of most cultural plans. It supports claims that libraries contribute to the local economy.
* Collecting popular culture. Some libraries celebrate their local community's heritage by spending one day a year collecting ephemera e·phem·er·a
A plural of ephemeron.
items designed to last only for a short time, such as programmes or posters
Noun 1. . The popular culture collection provides a snapshot (1) A saved copy of memory including the contents of all memory bytes, hardware registers and status indicators. It is periodically taken in order to restore the system in the event of failure.
(2) A saved copy of a file before it is updated. of a 'Day in the life of ...'. It can provide fascinating insights into lifestyle and traditions as well as providing information on current prices and living costs, design trends, events and daily rituals. Collecting popular culture fascinates people. It provides good copy for promotion in the local paper and provides opportunities to link with schools and community. Popular culture collections provide source material for exhibitions but they also inform the mapping stage of the cultural plan providing a unique snapshot of local life.
These strategies have contributed to extending the role of the library staff into the community. They encourage connections to local cultural organisations and to artists and provide practical tools that can inform cultural planning.
Libraries are places for ideas and for discussion. They support citizenship, promote the traditions of free speech, stimulate the imagination, encourage ideas, contribute to building social capital and generally they are managed by skilled and respected staff who are adaptable, creative and forward thinking. Libraries can have a far reaching impact on the culture of a community, not just by their physical presence but also by their wide range of cultural activities and learning opportunities.
Cultural planning now provides public librarians with a tool to build on already strong cultural foundations, but it is important to never let a chance go by to
* strengthen the library's place as a cultural hub
* embed cultural planning and the celebration of local identity into the library's strategic planning Strategic planning is an organization's process of defining its strategy, or direction, and making decisions on allocating its resources to pursue this strategy, including its capital and people.
* build new audiences for the library through strategic cultural planning in the council and across the community
Above all, become involved in cultural planning to develop new skills, to broaden your horizons, to meet new creative people and to have new experiences. Cultural planning is a key to building community connections for public librarians.
(1) Creative nation: Commonwealth cultural policy Canberra, Department of Communications and the Arts 1994
(2) City of Port Phillip corporate plan www.port phillip.vic.gov.au/corporate_plan
(3) Cultural planning guidelines for local government Sydney, NSW Ministry for the Arts 2004
(4) Australian Bureau of Statistics The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is the Australian government agency that collects and publishes statistical information about Australia and its people. Population and Housing
The agency undertakes the Australian Census of Population and Housing. , National Centre for Culture and Recreation Statistics http://www.abs.gov.au or email nccrs@abs. gov.au
(5) Idea Store, Tower Hamlets Council www.ideastore. co.uk
(6) Mid North Coast Writers Association email email@example.com
Sue Boaden BA(Art History) MA(Cultural Policy) is director of the Australia Street Company. She is a leading Australian Australian
pertaining to or originating in Australia.
Australian bat lyssavirus disease
see Australian bat lyssavirus disease.
Australian cattle dog
a medium-sized, compact working dog used for control of cattle. cultural strategist strat·e·gist
One who is skilled in strategy.
Noun 1. strategist - an expert in strategy (especially in warfare)
market strategist - someone skilled in planning marketing campaigns specialising m cultural policy, planning and management. Sue has executive public sector experience including the management of special and public libraries. Since 1997 she has undertaken cultural planning and infiastructure review projects in Queensland Queensland, state (1991 pop. 2,477,152), 667,000 sq mi (1,727,200 sq km), NE Australia. Brisbane is the capital; other important cities are Gold Coast, Toowoomba, Townsville, Rockhampton, Cairns, and Ipswich. , NSW and the ACT. SBoaden@bigpond.com.au