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Gaps in performance: benchmarking of the Czech and Slovak city libraries

Iveta Vrabková (Department of Public Economics, Vysoka Skola Banska – Technicka Univerzita Ostrava, Czech Republic)
Václav Friedrich (Department of Mathematical Methods in Economics, Vysoka Skola Banska – Technicka Univerzita Ostrava, Czech Republic)

Library Management

ISSN: 0143-5124

Article publication date: 13 June 2017




The purpose of this paper is to identify gaps in performance of city libraries from the Czech and from the Slovak Republic engaged in the project Benchmarking of Libraries. The subject of research consists of input and output performance variables of selected 51 city libraries for the period of 2011-2015 and their mutual dependence and influence.


To analyse relationships among ten input and four output variables, the correlation and regression analyses were used. Regression analysis was focussed on four output variables – numbers of physical visitors of libraries, numbers of loans, numbers of visitors using the internet in the library, and numbers of registered readers. Interpretation of results was supplemented with classification multidimensional analysis Chi-square automatic interaction detection.


Findings reveal that besides others the significant gap in performance was represented by library additions, which means the renewal of library collections. Performance differences were also found between city libraries in the Czech Republic and those in the Slovak Republic.

Research limitations/implications

This paper evaluates gaps in the performance on representative sample of city libraries. The number of population served among individual selected 51 libraries ranges between 15 and 35 thousand inhabitants. Analysed data are from years 2011-2015.


The paper analyses, by using statistical methods, data that are generated within the benchmarking project. This methodology proves and reveals causalities among performance indicators of city libraries in an unconventional way.



The paper was created under SGS project (SP2016/60, The Technical Efficiency and Economic Stability of Allowance Organizations) Faculty of Economics, VŠB – Technical University of Ostrava and was supported within Operational Programme Education for Competitiveness – Project No. CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0296.


Vrabková, I. and Friedrich, V. (2017), "Gaps in performance: benchmarking of the Czech and Slovak city libraries", Library Management, Vol. 38 No. 4/5, pp. 263-275.



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