Libraries and the Economy

library use surges in tough economic times

Radio coverage

The Role of Libraries in Tough Economic Times - NPR/WAMU

Libraries today have become multimedia centers, offering not only books but DVDs, e-books and Internet access. They can also be an especially important community resource during times of economic hardship. A look at the future of libraries in a slowing economy.


  • Carla Hayden, executive director, Enoch Pratt Free Library and past president of the American Library Association
  • Jim Rettig, President of the American Library Association. He is also the University Librarian at the Boatwright Memorial Library at the University of Richmond, Virginia.
  • Ginnie Cooper, Chief Librarian for the District of Columbia Public Library. She is the Former Executive Director of the Brooklyn Public Library.

Libraries Shine In Tough Economic Times - NPR

With the economy slowing, many Americans are doing research in the public library. Boyd County, Ky., Library Director Debbie Cosper says public-use computers are always full and people are checking out books rather than buying them.

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