Research & Statistics
50 E. Huron. St.
Chicago, IL 60611
The Mission of the Office for Research and Statistics (ORS) is to provide leadership and expert advice to ALA staff, members, and public on all matters related to research and statistics about libraries, librarians, and other library staff; represent the Association to Federal agencies on these issues; and initiate projects needed to expand the knowledge base of the field through research and the collection of useful statistics.
To assist with navigating the Office's resources, including links to the newly-published Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study, related Issues Briefs, the ALA Research Series, the Tough Economy Toolkit and more, please use the following links:
Initiatives & Projects
The Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study, published on June 19th, assesses public access to computers, the Internet and Internet-related services in U.S. public libraries, and the impact of library funding changes on connectivity, technology deployment and sustainability. The study builds on the longest-running and largest study of Internet connectivity in public libraries begun in 1994.
Read the 2012 study, Libraries Connect Communities, today.
The Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study research team has developed and published topical Issues Briefs related to issues affecting communities’ access to technology in our public libraries. These two to eight page documents are not intended to be comprehensive, but rather share key findings from the largest and longest-running study of Internet connectivity in libraries.
See the briefs on Broadband use, e-government, and more on the Issues Briefs page.
ALA Research Series
The purpose of the ALA Research Series is to expand the knowledge base of library research through publishing quantitative and/or qualitative research and analysis that addresses topics important to libraries, librarians, and education in the profession.
Tough Economy Toolkit - Advocacy, communication, and outreach resources.
Trends in Academic Libraries, 1998-2008
The latest report, Trends in Academic Libraries,1998 to 2008, from the Office for Research and Statistics analyzes trends in U.S. academic libraries' expenditures, staffing, services offered, collections and more, using public use data from the biennial survey from the National Center for Education Statistics. The data span from 1998's survey through the 2008 survey, and are reported by degree-granting level, size, carnegie Classification, and public/ private status.
The ALA's Member Demographics Questionnaire allows the organization to better know itself, to better advocate for ALA members, and to provide services more effectively.
Committees and Roundtables
Founded in 1947, LHRT exists to facilitate communication among scholars and students of library history, to support research in library history, and to be active in issues, such as preservation, that concern library historians.
Founded in 1968, LRRT exists to contribute toward the extension and improvement of library research; to provide public program opportunities for describing and evaluating library research projects and for disseminating their findings; to inform and educate ALA members concerning research techniques and their usefulness in obtaining information with which to reach administrative decisions and solve problems; and expand the theoretical base of the field.
The Committee on Research and Statistics facilitates research and related activities in all units of the Association especially activities related to library statistics; advises the ALA Council and Executive Boards on programs, policy, and priorities regarding research and related activities; recommends procedures to achieve expeditious consideration of all ALA unit proposals for research and related activities by the ALA Executive Board; and more.
The awards and grants administered by the Office for Research and Statistics and the Library History and Library Research Roundtables, inlcuding the Baber Research Grant, the Phyllis Dain Library History, the Donald G. Davis Article Award, the Loleta D. Fyan Grant, the Eliza Atkins Gleason Book Award, the Beta Phi Mu Award, the Jesse H. Shera Award for Distinguished Published Research, the Jesse H. Shera Award for the Support of Dissertation Research, and the Justin Winsor Prize Essay award.
Survey of Library Networks and Cooperatives.
National Center for Education Statistics reports and the 2008 Academic Library Survey. For advisory committee information, minutes, and other survey documentation search the Academic Library Survey Documentation page.
Includes ALA's salary survey, library staff studies, recruitment and retirement studies, studies of public library use in economic hard times and more.
Statistics on academic, public, and school libraries, as well as state library agencies and libraries in other countries.
ALA Standards Manual, and compilation of standards and guidelines.