Policies, Planning and Reports

Reading a Difference

This page gathers together the various documents associated with the 'Reading a Difference' project as carried out during 2006 across six library authorities in South West England.

The project attempted to measure the informal learning outcomes gained from borrowed library books. The six library authorities involved were:

Devon, Wiltshire; Somerset; South Gloucestershire; Plymouth; Bath & North East Somerset

A quick guide to each document:

  • The Public Library Journal article, Libraries Inspire Learning, was published in the Summer of 2007. The article looks at the reasons why this measurement tool is useful within the public library sector. It is a rhetorical piece that aims to realign the debate on library measurement and outcomes towards the value of reading books. With thanks to the Public Library Journal for allowing the article to be made available here.
  • The original report Reading a Difference was published in August 2006 and goes into some detail on the theoretical background of the project, gives details of the methodology and breaks down the results.
  • The 'FAQ' document covers the ground 'in-between' the journal article and the report. It deals with questions that have been raised by library practitioners about the project and attempts to summarise practical issues and suggested ways forward.

The documents:

Libraries Inspire Learning image - PDF icon (81KB - pdf help)
Reading a Difference image - PDF icon (1.34MB - pdf help)
Reading a Difference - FAQ image - PDF icon (52KB - pdf help)

This page will develop as the project itself develops.

Colin Bray, Project Coordinator