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Looking Ahead For Our Public Libraries

1 MAY 2006

Looking Ahead For Our Public Libraries: Strategic Framework Will Guide Development Over Next Ten Years

The vital role that public libraries play in community life is emphasised in a new document, to be launched by the Hon. Judith Tizard at Parliament on May 1.

'Public Libraries of New Zealand: A Strategic Framework 2006 to 2016' addresses the challenges that public libraries face in meeting the demands of the future. It is the result of several years' consultation and collaboration between libraries, local government, central government and other stakeholder groups.

'I welcome the release of this strategic framework for public libraries – this document will guide libraries and their funders over the next ten years as they make decisions about the directions libraries are taking in this digital age,' says Judith Tizard, Minister responsible for the National Library.

'Public libraries are invaluable to our democratic way of life – they contribute to our economic, social and cultural life – both locally and nationally.'

The vision of the Strategic Framework is 'Public Libraries engage, inspire and inform citizens and help build strong communities'. Four areas of strategic development have been identified:

--Accessing information, ideas and works of the imagination
--Supporting independent lifelong learning and literacy
--Enabling online access to the digital world
--Building community participation and development

The development of the Strategic Framework has been steered by New Zealand's public libraries (represented by Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa (LIANZA) and MetroNet Inc), and the National Library of New Zealand, with input from Local Government New Zealand, Society of Local Government Managers, Department of Internal Affairs and Te Ropu Whakahau (Maori in libraries and information).

'This has truly been a collaborative venture,' says Sue Sutherland, National Library of New Zealand, co-leader of the project with Jane Hill, Manager Libraries at Wellington City Council. We believe this document has the potential to be the catalyst for significant change and growth in public libraries.'

A copy of 'Public Libraries of New Zealand: A Strategic Framework 2006 to 2016' can be downloaded at:


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