Can we quantify the library's influence? Creating an ISO standard for impact assessment

Roswitha Poll (University of Münster, Münster, Germany)

Performance Measurement and Metrics

ISSN: 1467-8047

Publication date: 29 June 2012



The purpose of this paper is to deal with actually available and potential methods for identifying, verifying and quantifying the influence of libraries on individuals and society.


The paper gives an overview of methods and procedures that have been used for demonstrating the social, educational or economic impact of libraries. It points to validity problems and to labor costs of specified procedures and shows examples of simple methods that might be applied by most libraries.


Various projects worldwide have tried to develop and test such methods, and the discussion has reached a stage where a first aggregation in an International Standard seems possible and expedient. ISO therefore started a working group in December 2010.


This is the first report concerning ISO 16439.



Poll, R. (2012), "Can we quantify the library's influence? Creating an ISO standard for impact assessment", Performance Measurement and Metrics, Vol. 13 No. 2, pp. 121-130.

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