Public library staff in small, mid-sized or rural communities invited to free learning series on dialogue and deliberation facilitation
For Immediate Release
ALA Public Programs Office
CHICAGO — The American Library Association (ALA), the Public Library Association (PLA) and the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) invite public library staff serving small, mid-sized or rural communities to attend a free learning series to learn to lead productive conversations in their communities.
Through Libraries Transforming Communities: Models for Change, a two-year ALA initiative, library professionals may participate in three online learning sessions and one in-person workshop, all free of charge, between February and June 2018.
Library professionals should attend these sessions to learn to convene critical conversations with people with differing viewpoints; connect more meaningfully with library users and better meet their needs; and translate conversation into action.
Registration is currently open for the following three webinars:
- In Session 1, participants will learn about the range of dialogue and deliberation approaches available; start thinking about their libraries’ engagement goals; learn about resources available to libraries and how to access them; and be introduced to the two dialogue and deliberation approaches that will be featured later in this webinar series. Register for “Libraries Transforming Communities: Introduction to Dialogue & Deliberation for Public Libraries Serving Small, Mid-sized and/or Rural Communities” (Wednesday, Feb. 28, 1 p.m. CST).
- In Session 2, participants will learn how they can use the Future Search process to enable large, diverse groups to validate a common mission, take responsibility for action, and develop a concrete action plan. Register for “Libraries Transforming Communities: Future Search” (Wednesday, April 25, 1 p.m. CST).
- In Session 3, participants will learn how Conversation Cafés can help community members learn more about themselves, their community or an issue; essential elements of hosting a Conversation Café; facilitation skills; and techniques for addressing challenges. Register for “Libraries Transforming Communities: Conversation Café” (Wednesday, May 23, 1 p.m. CST).
Each session will be recorded and archived for free on-demand viewing on ALA’s Programming Librarian website.
Individuals who view all three webinars, live or recorded, will be invited to attend a free pre-conference workshop exploring the Conversation Café approach in-depth at the 2018 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans on June 22, 2018. Space is limited, and preference will be given to public library professionals serving small, mid-sized or rural communities.
This learning series is the third offered as part of Libraries Transforming Communities: Models for Change. Previous learning sessions, now available for free viewing, were offered for public libraries serving large or urban communities (recorded spring 2017) and academic libraries (recorded winter 2018).
Libraries Transforming Communities: Models for Change follows up on Libraries Transforming Communities (LTC), a two-year initiative offered in 2014-15 by ALA and The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation that explored and developed the Harwood Institute's "Turning Outward" approach in public libraries. With this second phase of LTC, ALA broadens its focus on library-led community engagement by offering professional development training in community engagement and dialogue facilitation models created by change-making leaders.
Libraries Transforming Communities: Models for Change is made possible through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program. The initiative is offered by ALA’s Public Programs Office.
About the American Library Association
The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with approximately 57,000 members in academic, public, school, government, and special libraries. The mission of the American Library Association is to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.
About the ALA Public Programs Office
ALA’s Public Programs Office provides leadership, resources, training and networking opportunities that help thousands of library professionals nationwide develop and host cultural programs for adult, young adult and family audiences. The mission of the ALA Public Programs Office is to promote cultural programming as an essential part of library service in all types of libraries. For programming ideas, professional development and grant opportunities, on-demand online courses and other free resources, visit www.programminglibrarian.org.
About the Public Library Association
The Public Library Association (PLA) is the largest association dedicated to supporting the unique and evolving needs of public library professionals. Founded in 1944, PLA serves nearly 9,000 members in public libraries large and small in communities across the United States and Canada, with a growing presence around the world. PLA strives to help its members shape the essential institution of public libraries by serving as an indispensable ally for public library leaders. For more information about PLA, visit www.pla.org.
About the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation
NCDD is an active U.S.-based network of thousands of innovators who bring people together across divides to discuss, decide and act together on today's toughest challenges. We serve as a gathering place, a resource center, a news source and a facilitative leader for an active community of practice centered around the practices of dialogue and deliberation. Our online Resource Center at www.ncdd.org/rc connects people to 3,000 resources on group process and public engagement, and more than 30,000 people are subscribed to our monthly email updates. Our biennial national conferences are well-loved, high-energy events that bring together those who are committed to finding innovative ways to convene people to address seemingly intractable problems. To learn more or get involved, visit www.ncdd.org.
About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is celebrating its 20th Anniversary. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s approximately 123,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit www.imls.gov and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.