Topic: Librarianship / Libraries and Librarianship

Innovation and the Library
The Adoption of New Ideas in Public Libraries
Verna L. Pungitore

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Verna L. Pungitore

Innovation and the Library

The Adoption of New Ideas in Public Libraries

Verna L. Pungitore Verna L. Pungitore

July 1995


Series: Contributions in Librarianship and Information Science

6 1/8x9 1/4
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Argues that for libraries to respond effectively to a changing society, managerial information and innovation must be spread more effectively among librarians.

Today's rapidly evolving information-based society demands that public libraries implement planned, proactive, and innovative change to meet patron needs. Rapid, widespread, and substantive change and innovation in public librarianship depends on the ability of public librarians to share in the exchange of new ideas, regardless of the size of their communities. This book explores how managerial innovations are generated and disseminated among public librarians.

To examine how new ideas are created and spread among public librarians, the volume focuses on the case of the dissemination of a particular innovation, a set of techniques developed and promoted by a national professional association, which allows public librarians to engage in user-oriented planning, community-specific role setting, and self-evaluation of library performance. This case study is placed within a larger context of classical models of the diffusion process and the literature on organizational change and innovation. Drawing on her findings, the author offers suggestions to facilitate public library change.
Public Libraries, Change, and Innovation
Public Libraries and Organizational Change: An Overview
Diffusion and Adoption of Innovations
Evolutionary Change in Public Libraries: 1920-1965
Life History of a Public Library Innovation
Prelude to Innovation: 1966-1979
Development and Dissemination of the Innovation
PLDP: The Modified Innovation
Toward a Model of Public Library Innovation
Diffusion Among Smaller Libraries: 1980-1990
Patterns of Implementation in Smaller Libraries
Fitting the Public Library Experience to the Models
Facilitating Innovation in Public Libraries
The book's value lies in the lessons it provides about instituting change by persuasion: commitment on the part of key people, a complex web of linkages among them, a long-term commitment by PLA and its elected officers, the need to involve helpers such as the state library agencies, and the need for strong training and educational components to get community librarians involved. As PLA has now begine to reevaluate these innovations in preparation for a new or revisde set of techniques for the 21st century, the lessons learned about the diffusion of innovations as described in this book will prove highly useful.—Collection Management

This book is recommended for public library administrators, trustee leaders, and libraries where 'planning meets resistance.'—RQ