Technology-based outreach for libraries

For Immediate Release
Fri, 10/19/2018


Rob Christopher

Marketing Coordinator

ALA Publishing

American Library Association


CHICAGO — From straightforward internet access to elaborate makerspaces, libraries have taken center stage when it comes to providing free access to technology to those who visit their physical spaces. But how about people who don’t walk into a library? How do we ensure those members of the community are also being reached by technology programming? Erin Berman, named an ALA Emerging Leader and Library Journal Mover & Shaker, leads the way in her new book “Your Technology Outreach Adventure: Tools for Human-Centered Problem Solving,” published by ALA Editions. Sharing the methods and experiences of her team at San José Public Library, in this guide Berman:

  • presents numerous real-world case studies, including videomaking in a skate park, e-readers for seniors, popup mobile makerspaces, and simple circuits in middle school, that will inspire readers to move technology beyond the walls of the library;
  • offers dozens of design thinking exercises, such as rapid prototyping, empathy mapping, and logic models, as part of a start-to-finish model for developing a new program concept;
  • discusses the origins of and reasons behind the digital divide, then shares outreach fundamentals and best practices that will help ensure success; and
  • provides information about ways to connect with the community, perform evaluation, offer STEM programming, and additional resources.

Now Principal Librarian of the Learning Group at Alameda County Library in California, Berman was Innovations Manager at San José Public Library in California. Her work has mainly focused on technology literacy and equity, leading projects such as the Virtual Privacy Lab and the Maker[Space]Ship. She is currently the Chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee's Privacy Subcommittee, assisting libraries across the nation in Choosing Privacy Every Day.

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