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Libraries and Grants for the Arts

Ben Lee, programme director writes Arts Council England have just released their latest data showing which library services have made successful applications to the ring-fenced portion of Grants for the Arts reserved for libraries. Round one of Grants for the Arts for libraries ran from 2013 until March this year, and Round two is now open and runs until 2018. Libraries can apply for grants up to £100,000 for projects which have a clear link with the arts. The latest awards vary in size from five or six thousand pounds up to £50,000 for Worcester Library’s ‘Worcestershire Sounds’ project in which library users and artists will create audio archives of ...

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Digital leadership skills

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Now, more than ever, libraries offer something unique in an increasingly digital world: a 'safe' community space where children and adults can learn about ...

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Demonstrating increased social impact is the biggest challenge libraries will face

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Image: Library Lab at Willesden Green Library, London, by Lynton Pepper at We Own Cameras Today Arts Council England published the final reports from our work on Envisioning the library of the future which we carried out with Ipsos MORI last year. Our work sought to understand the challenges libraries will face over the coming decade. There are many, but the one which stands out is that many of our public libraries are struggling to articulate their social objectives (although a few do it brilliantly). We see this as a serious risk for them today, and believe it will become an even bigger one in the coming years. The role, ...

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The real difference between libraries

Alongside the annual statistics on library use, CIPFA have for the first time published comparative profiles showing how every public library service in England compares with libraries in similar boroughs. These statistical neighbour comparisons reinforce the message that the amount local authorities choose to spend per capita on libraries varies substantially across England. While some councils spend as little as £10 per resident on libraries, a handful spend over£30 per head. Shared Intelligence’s Ben Lee and Kevin Fenning have looked into the detail of the CIPFA statistical neighbour figures, and CIPFA’s main annual public libraries statistics. What the data highlights is that simply comparing the quantity of service each council ...

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