Winning Library Grants: A Game Plan

Philip Calvert (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand)

The Electronic Library

ISSN: 0264-0473

Article publication date: 4 October 2011



Calvert, P. (2011), "Winning Library Grants: A Game Plan", The Electronic Library, Vol. 29 No. 5, pp. 726-727.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

In the United States, in particular, the need for libraries to generate their own revenue is very important, and many managers there have learned skills in the arts of fundraising. While revenue streams are important in other countries, the needed knowledge to raise money is less widespread, so perhaps that is why all the books on fundraising for libraries seem to be published in the United States. This title joins others, such as Library fundraising: models for success, edited by Dwight Burlingame (ALA, 1995); Art of the books: a complete guide to a fundraising project for libraries & other organizations, by Annette Chaudet (Pronghorn, 2005); and Fundraising for Libraries: 25 Proven Ways to Get More Money for Your Library, by James Swan (Neal‐Schuman, 2002).

Landau, who learned many of the skills he describes in this book while writing numerous grant proposals in industry, believes every librarian can be a fundraiser. He makes some points here that I have not seen often mentioned elsewhere, such as his discussion of pre‐proposal ’marketing’ of your organisation to the funding agencies, just to raise the profile, then the post‐proposal pre‐award stage to cement the relationship. This is all in addition to very solid suggestions about proposal writing. This is a practical book with many good ideas that will assist the practitioner trying to get new sources of revenue. The author includes contact details for many potential sources of funds for U.S. libraries, which might deter the non‐American reader, but this is a useful book for all librarians nevertheless.

If there was anything I found disappointing about this book, and it is only a minor criticism, it is the assumption that everyone can be a fundraiser. What are the attributes of the good fundraiser, and can managers and libraries make themselves better at generating revenue by adopting other behaviours, and not only by learning the skills so well described by Landau? Maybe that is the subject of another book.

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