Released: December 1, 2013

Uncertainty and the Future of Libraries

8 – What will be the role of place?

23% of American’s age 16 and older have read an e-book, according to a 2012 report by Pew Research Center’s Pew Internet & American Life Project. Will the physical place of the library remain a key attribute of the library concept as physical book readership declines? Some libraries may choose to compete with Starbucks and others as meeting locations, but couldn’t that public service be served by cities and counties at a much lower cost if libraries stopped carrying books and simply became Wi-Fi-enabled community centers? Do libraries become true information hubs, acting as an intersection point where the physical and the digital converge, creating a new value proposition in the wake of change?

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