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Rural and Small Public Libraries: Challenges and Opportunities

Call for chapters from Advances in Librarianship

Rural and Small Public Libraries: Challenges and Opportunities is an edited volume from the Advances in Librarianship book series. It is meant to act as both a scholarly guide to the state of rural and small libraries (RSLs) and a practical guide that can help rural and small libraries to improve their service offerings, better advocate for greater funding and support, and form partnerships that will help them meet the needs of their communities.

For the purpose of this book, rural and small public libraries are defined as libraries that have service populations of 25,000 or less. Proposals for chapters are welcome from academics, librarians, and professionals who engage with RSLs to promote the goals of their organizations.

This book is edited by Brian Real, PhD. Chapters may focus on, but are not limited to, the following themes:

  • Perspectives on RSL funding and support;
  • RSL partnerships, including collaboration with government agencies and local businesses;
  • Education and training for rural and small librarians;
  • The importance of professional organizations such as the Association of Rural and Small Libraries, Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services, and the American Library Association, as well as how these organizations can improve their services to RSLs;
  • Advocacy and promotion for RSLs, especially in ways that can lead to increased funding and support;
  • How digital technologies have expanded RSL services, including efforts to promote digital inclusion;
  • The technology offering and capability divide between RSLs and libraries in more populated areas;
  • The value of bookmobiles in expanding service to RSLs' communities;
  • How community centers, church computing centers, and other local organizations perform similar functions to RSLs;
  • Challenges faced by tribal libraries and the similarity of these outlets to RSLs; and
  • The role of RSLs in promoting and preserving regional culture.

Chapter proposals should include a 300 - 500 word abstract. Supplemental materials and additional, longer form proposals may also be included with abstracts.

Please direct inquiries and chapter ideas to Brian Real at [email protected]

The proposal submission deadline is January 22, 2016.