Kristi Zappie-Ferradino, Program Director, Edge Initiative, Urban Libraries Council
Susan McVey, State Librarian, Oklahoma Department of Libraries, USA
Susan Benton, President and CEO, Urban Libraries Council, Washington, DC, USA
Get the Edge: Leveraging Data to Action
Data is all around us and we spend a good portion of our day entering it, manipulating it and pulling it into reports to evaluate impact. But, data is only valuable when it is actually used as a resource to make informed and strategic decisions. Public libraries throughout the United States are doing just that by using the Edge Toolkit.
Edge—is a robust management and leadership tool to assess and improve public access technology services. Through an easy to use suite of tools, Edge supports libraries make strategic decisions and identify areas for improvement. The Edge Toolkit gives libraries a look into their local data, from operations to partnerships and programming, to assess how their community is using technology. The toolkit provides best practices to implement to align future growth and services with community priorities. It also provides useful resources to package and showcase assessment data for community leaders.
Edge libraries are able to better demonstrate how their work adds value and positively impacts the community. Edge was developed with an understanding of the technology demands and the challenges libraries face today.
By providing increased public access technology data and resources to the library field, libraries are able to elevate their public technology services and better serve their community. Edge data enables decision makers at all levels to make strategic decisions to better value, support, and champion the role of the public library in efforts to enhance community vitality and address local and regional priorities.
Goals or Outcomes:
1. Communicate the library’s vision, especially as it relates to technology and advocacy using public access technology data;
2. Engage community stakeholders to make informed, strategic decisions based on data from a research-based, field-recognized library benchmarking tool;
3. Foster innovation in the library field by scaling recognized best practices; and
4. Document and share emerging best practices and successful strategies across the library field to implement in your library.
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