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"The Impact of Community Grassroots Campaigns on Public Library Closures." J. Mowbray. D. McMenemy. Department of Computer and Information Sciences, University of Strathclyde. 2014. Download PDF (BibTeX) MSc Information and Library Studies

Community grassroots campaigns against proposed public library closures have been locked into conflicts with local authorities across the UK in recent years. No previous research has been specifically aimed at the plight of these local library activists, and so the researcher was keen to explore who they are, what they do, and the impact they have on the overall library closure process.
The aim of this study was to reach as many campaigners from across the country as possible, and having done so, to collate any relevant information that would aid in determining the make-up of local library campaigns, and how the individuals within them perceived their efforts to have been received. In addition to this, the research was also concerned with examining how the regional printed press reported the library closure processes, and the campaigns, which surfaced to challenge them.
It was discovered that local library campaigns are made up of passionate, knowledgeable and determined activists, who undertake a broad base of activities and in doing so rouse the support of local communities. In addition to this, they are also widely received in the local printed press. However, it was also found that this support does not always translate to active involvement, and that campaigners are pitted against equally determined local authorities. They also face an overarching political philosophy, which undermines the fundamental value of public libraries and other public services.