Kathryn Zickuhr is a research analyst at the Pew Research Center's Internet Project. She studies the social impact of technology, focusing on the changing role of public libraries in Americans’ lives and communities in the era of digital content.
The science of “the smell of books”
Scientists delve deeper into the science behind print books’ distinctive smell.
One-third of adults (and half of parents) now own a tablet computer
We just published a new report showing that half (50%) of parents with minor children living at home now own a tablet computer. How are parents are using devices such as tablets and smartphones with their children?
Children, libraries, and reading
Happy Children’s Book Week. Here’s a a closer look at our data on children and reading from our recent report on parents, children, libraries, and reading.
Parents, Children, Libraries, and Reading: Select quotes from parents and library staff
In addition to the statistics included in our report, we also asked parents and librarians from around the country about their thoughts on various library services for parents and children. These quotes are from in-person and online focus groups of library patrons and staff, as well as an online questionnaire of library staff members.
Parents, Children, Libraries, and Reading
Parents of minor children have a special relationship with libraries. Most believe libraries are very important for their children and provide extra resources that are not available at home.
“What should I read next?”
It’s a question that librarians, booksellers, and others have heard often, perhaps even more so at a time when the output and availability of the written word has never been higher. And it’s a question that new book-recommendation sites such as Bookish and BookScout are trying to answer, joining a plethora of communities and services already trying to navigate the tricky task of helping you decide which book to pick up next.
Should libraries shush?
If there’s one thing our research shows, it’s that there’s no one thing people want their libraries to be. They want their libraries to be lots of things, a place where they can study and meet with friends and attend meetings — and more. Should libraries be quiet or bustling — or both?
Innovative library services “in the wild”
Our new report takes a close look not only at how Americans are using public libraries, but also what sort of services and programming they think libraries should offer — and what they say they would use in the future. For this last point, we asked about a range of potential offerings. Here are illustrations of some of these more innovative services, to see what they look like on the ground — as well as some “fun and funky” services that we’ve seen pop up at libraries across the county.
Other library links and news around the web
While we hope you’ve had a chance to read our new report on library services that just came out this week, there are some other great links out there that you should be sure to check out.
Library Services in the Digital Age
The internet has already had a major impact on how people find and access information, and now the rising popularity of e-books is helping transform Americans’ reading habits. In this changing landscape, public libraries are trying to adjust their services to these new realities while still serving the needs of patrons who rely on more traditional resources.