IMLS studies how libraries and museums contribute to social well-being



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IMLS studies how libraries and museums contribute to social well-being

IMLS in partnership with Reinvestment Fund for a study that “examines the role of museums and libraries in promoting social well-being in communities across the United States.” The resulting report, “Understand the impacts on the social well-being of the country’s libraries and museums, “ notes that “the presence and use of public libraries and museums are positively associated with multiple dimensions of social well-being, in particular community health, school effectiveness, institutional links and cultural opportunities”.

The other main conclusions are as follows:

  • Libraries and museums are increasingly critical actors supporting the delivery of social services in the communities they serve. In many places, these institutions are filling the gaps left by exhausted or absent public sector supports for education, public health and social services. The roles they take on in filling these gaps often strain their organizational capacity and missions in order to meet the needs of residents who have traditionally been served by the public sector.
  • Libraries and museums are trusted institutions in their communities. These are places people go to get information that they know is reliable. These are places where people go to meet other people, learn new things, engage with the collections of institutions and have fun and have fun in the company of others. …
  • Libraries and museums can be catalysts in their communities to promote racial equity and inclusion. The fact that these institutions are highly networked in their communities, widely seen as trusted organizations, and host to diverse populations that circulate in their spaces, makes libraries and museums potential catalysts for advancing racial equity and inclusion. in their communities.
  • It’s all in the networks. Libraries and museums are essential elements of institutional and social networks. In smaller and more remote areas, they are often indispensable resources for local residents. The value these institutions provide stems from the connections they facilitate between individuals, groups and other organizations. …

For more information, read the Press release.


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