Social Impact

The expertise of the library staff has value.

Staff include knowledgeable reference librarians and other staff, class instructors, volunteers, and people committed to maintaining the library.

Services of the library have value.

These include interlibrary loans, classes and special programs, availability of home delivery, services for the disabled, assistance with resumes and job searches, tax forms, children's programs, bookmobiles.

The collection of materials in the library has value.

Minnesota's public libraries are like libraries in other states in that they are valued for providing free access to educational and entertainment materials, are an open and welcoming gathering place, and for providing resources to those who would otherwise be unable to afford them. A typical list of what comprises Minnesota library collections and downloads can include books and periodicals, professional journals, travel materials, audio books, DVDs, videos, music, and business resources.

Public Library Stakeholders

stakeholders, inside and outside the library represent library users with children or grandchildren; employees from the community at large, who check out materials for use at their workplace, as well as job seekers; library users who contact public library reference libraries for information; and technology users with a need for Internet access.

Social Return on Investment in Public Libraries

The social return on investment from Minnesota public libraries is greater than simply the measureable return on investment. Other benefits of significant value include the collection of materials itself, and the many services of the library; the educational programs, as well as the educational benefits of the library's mission including literacy of the citizenry; technology for use in the library; the expertise of the library staff; the library facility as a community gathering place; the "halo" spending by library users at establishments close to the library; and the value of a library's enhancement to neighborhood real estate and community partnerships.

Public Library of MN add to the state economy

The public libraries of MN on the state economyCapital Expenditures: The impact of payroll  associated with public library capital expenditures delivers an impact of more than $35.5 million dollars to the State. Operations: The impact of payroll associated with public library operations delivers an impact of more than $260.8 million dollars to the State.Capital Expenditures: The impact of sales associated with public library capital expenditures delivers an impact of more than $65.3 million dollars to the State. Operations: The impact of sales [services] associated with public library operations delivers an impact of more than $366.4 million dollars to the State. 

The average household would be willing to donate between $31.7 and $38.3 US dollars

The average household would be willing and able to donate [to public libraries] between $31.7 and $38.3 US dollars annually, resulting in a total donation for Minnesota’s approximately 2,061,882 households of $65.4 to $79.0 million annually.

Majority of all adult age groups use the public library

Reported household usage of the public library varies by the respondent’s age group. Eighty-eight percent of 18–34 year olds (born 1976 to 1992) reported that they and/or someone in their household used a public library in 2010, prior to their interview. Among those 35–54 (born 1956 to 1975) 84% of households report public library usage. A lower percentage of households (70%) used the public library among those aged 55 or older (born before 1956).

All education groups feel public libraries are important in every community

There appears to be no statistically significant difference between these education groups in their feeling of the importance of having a public library in every community. All groups feel this is important.

Majority feel having a library in every community is important

Ninety-five percent of users and 83% of non-users feel having a library in every community is either somewhat or very importantOverall 80% of non-users and 93% of users felt that public library support should remain the same or be increased.

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