A strategic diversity manifesto for public libraries in the 21st century

Bharat Mehra (School of Information Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA)
Rebecca Davis (School of Information Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA)

New Library World

ISSN: 0307-4803

Publication date: 12 January 2015

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research-based philosophical piece is to present a progressive manifesto for public libraries in the 21st century to address gaps in embracing diversity in its holistic dimensions and representing such information in their strategic planning and web documentations.

Design/methodology/approach

Content analysis of public library websites in the USA informed the development of a Strategic Diversity Manifesto that includes the “who”, the “what” and the “how” components to describe and discuss diversity-related matters in their strategic planning and web representations.

Findings

The Strategic Diversity Manifesto provides a mechanism for individual public library agencies, in their localized context and environment, to strategically inquire, describe, discuss, reflect, analyze and translate into concretized actions their picture of diversity as grounded in the reality of their representative communities.

Originality/value

The Strategic Diversity Manifesto presents a more a comprehensive and consolidated picture of diversity beyond isolated strategies seen in past efforts. It is a broader level of analysis and “picture painting” of the agency’s context, which may not be as detailed as compared to other modes of description, though as a result, it is more holistic instead of fragmentary. The aim is first and foremost to provide a basis for reflective thought and discussion.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors thank the two anonymous reviewers for their helpful critique and valuable suggestions during various iterations of the paper to develop it in its current form.

Citation

Mehra, B. and Davis, R. (2015), "A strategic diversity manifesto for public libraries in the 21st century", New Library World, Vol. 116 No. 1/2, pp. 15-36. https://doi.org/10.1108/NLW-04-2014-0043

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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