CHICAGO — Adults over the age of 50 constitute some of the most engaged and frequent users of public libraries. They may also be the most misunderstood. As Baby Boomers continue to swell their ranks, the behavior, interests and information needs of older adults have changed dramatically, and Diantha Dow Schull’s new book “50+ Library Services: Innovation in Action,” published by ALA Editions, offers the keys to reshaping library services for the new generations of active older adults. A must-read for library educators, library directors and any information professional working in a community or academic setting, this important book:
- Analyzes key societal trends, such as longer life spans and improved population health and their implications for libraries’ work with midlife adults;
- Profiles leading-edge states and beacon libraries from across the nation at the forefront of institutional change;
- Discusses issues such as creativity, health, financial literacy, life planning, and intergenerational activities from the 50+ perspective, while showing how libraries can position themselves as essential centers for learning, encore careers and community engagement;
- Spotlights best practices that can be adapted for any setting, including samples of hundreds of projects and proposals that illustrate new approaches to 50+ policies, staffing, programs, services, partnerships and communications.
Schull is an advisor to libraries, museums and foundations on organizational and program development. She was formerly president of Libraries for the Future and the Americans for Libraries Council. Previously, she was executive director of the French-American Foundation, director of exhibitions and education at the New York Public Library, director of interpretive programs at the Library of Congress, and assistant director of the Museum Aid Program of the New York State Council on the Arts. She currently serves on the board of the Connecticut Humanities Council. Author of numerous articles on cultural institutions, she was coeditor, with Pauline Rothstein, of “Boomers and Beyond: Reconsidering the Role of Libraries.”
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