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Finding Public Library Statistics
About Sources of Public Library Statistics
 Oregon Statistical Report Oregon Statistical Report
The data collected by the Oregon Statistical Report encompasses all of the PLSC (formerly FSCS) data elements, and includes some data collected at the state level.  It includes all legally established public library entities in Oregon.
Public Library Statistical Cooperative
Statistics are collected from 9,000+ public libraries, via the Public Library Statistical Cooperative (PLSC), formerly the Federal State Cooperative System (FSCS). The states partner with the Institute of Museum and Library Services to aggregate data on the national level.  The aim is to survey the entire universe of public libraries.  Data is checked for quality by State Library staff, and the U.S. Bureau of the Census.  Data is used in the peer comparison tool and published in the First Look series of data reports.  Formerly data was published by the National Center for Education Statistics as E.D. TAB: Public Libraries in the United States: Fiscal Year YYYY.  There are entities, such as Yachats Public Library, and the Library Information Network of Clackamas County, that do not meet the federal definition of a public library and are excluded from PLSC.  The Census also estimates data for libraries that don't report it, so there will be some differences between the Oregon Statistical Report and PLSC figures.
Hennen's American Public Library Ratings
Using data from the PLSC (formerly FSCS), Mr. Hennen's ratings of public libraries are published in the October issues of American Libraries.  Note that the ratings are dated with the year of the report, not the year of the data.  For instance, the 2004 ratings are based on 2001-2002 FSCS data.  One can subscribe to American Libraries Direct newsletter from ALA to be alerted when the measures come out.
 LJ Index 
LJ Index was created as an alternative to the Hennen Index.  This index examines only service outputs, such as visits and circulation, and excludes resource inputs.  Data comes from the Public Library Statistical Cooperative.  The LJ Index uses four per capita ratios that correlate with each other.
Article introducing LJ Index -
Lance, Keith Curry, and Ray Lyons. "The New LJ Index," Library Journal.com, June 15, 2008.
PLDS - Public Library Data Service Statistical Report
The PLDS is collected by the Public Library Association and contains data from 1,000 public libraries.  The data are published in the Public Library Data Service Statistical Report YYYY, which is available for loan through the Oregon State Library.  Call 503-588-7119 or see our catalog for more information.  Starting in 2002, the survey included a random sample of 489 libraries serving populations 5,001-50,000.  The data sample is skewed towards larger libraries.  Note that the year of the report is not the year the data were collected.
Florida State University
Drs. John Bertot and Charles R. McClure
Public Libraries & the Internet
Since 1994, Drs. Bertot and McClure of Florida State University have conducted studies roughly every two years that track the level of involvement, key issues, trends, and other aspects of public library internet use.  The survey covers issues such as internet connectivity bandwidth, internet-based service and resource availability, filtering of internet-based content and services, and costs and issues associated with internet connectivity.  This survey is done on a sampling basis.

Public Library Data Tools
Compare Public Libraries
Compare Public Libraries allows users to compare one library (the library of interest) with similar libraries (the comparison group) by population served or a variety of measures. The program can print or export a data table to Excel with state, national, and chosen peer group averages compared to the library of interest. 
Public Library Locator
The types of information available about a public library include: identifying information, organizational characteristics, staff, income and expenditures, size of library collection, library services offered, and electronic measures.   
Note about confidentiality and removal of data:  For libraries where Total Staff is less than or equal to 2.00 FTE, selected expenditures data for these public libraries have been removed.
 

National Public Library Data Reports
Reports for these years titled Public Libraries in the United States YYYY / First Look and published by the Institute of Museum and Library Services
2007 2006 2005    
 
Reports for these years titled E.D. Tab: Public Libraries in the United States YYYY and published by the National Center for Education Statistics
2004   2003   2002   2001   2000   1999   1998   1997   1996   1995   1994   1993   1992
 
Public Library Data Archive and Longitudinal Sets
1987- current 
 
Reports from the FSU survey, in conjunction with ALA:
 
Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study 2006-2007 Report 
The Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study assesses public access to computers, the Internet, and Internet-related services in U.S. public libraries, and the impact of library funding changes on connectivity, technology deployment, and sustainability.

 
Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study 2007-2008 
 
U.S. Public Library Internet Connectivity 2009 
Connectivity findings from the 2008-2009 study report, which will be published in full in September 2009.
 
 

Useful Links, Publications and Supporting Tools
Useful Links
Colorado's Library Research Service
This is a tremendous source of links to statistics for all kinds of libraries, and more!
 
American Library Association - Office of Research and Statistics
Links to up-to-date salary and staff data, links to many return-on-investment articles and studies, ALA standards and more.
 
E-Metrics Instructional System
The Information Use Management & Policy Institute at Florida State University developed measures for virtual services that libraries may wish to explore.

Publications
Libraries: How They Stack Up
Released in 2003 by OCLC, provides a snapshot of the economic impact of libraries worldwide. The report contains some interesting comparisons of library economics and activies to other sectors, professions and destinations in the global economy.

Taxpayer Return on Investment in Florida Public Libraries: Summary Report
A study prepared for the State Library and Archives of Florida through the collebrative efforts of Jose-Marie Griffiths (Univ. of Pittsburgh and Univ. of North Carolina-Chapel Hill); Donald W. King and Christinger Tomer (University of Pittsburgh); and Thomas Lynch and Julie Harrington (Florida State University), September 2004.  A fine example of this type of study.  Citations to similar works can be found via the ALA Office of Research and Statistics or Colorado's Library Research Service.
Links to other Return on Investment studies can be found on the American Library Association website.
 
FY09 State Funding for Public Libraries 
Information was gathered by ALA's Office for Research and Statistics from Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA) in December 2008.
 

with permission from http://www.unshelved.com/ strip from November 8, 2008

Supporting Sites and Tools
These are tools that indirectly support or augument use of public library statistics
 
Oregon Progress Board - Build a Custom Report
Oregon Benchmarks measure progress towards Oregon´s strategic vision, Oregon Shines.  Benchmarks are organized into seven categories: economy, education, civic engagement, social support, public safety, community development and environment.  The custom report generator provides access to data from particular measures, including 8th grade math and reading levels, and % of Oregonians adequately served by a public library.
 
Oregon Department of Revenue Statistical Reports
Reports on property and income taxes, by county and district type.
 
Population Research Center - Portland State University
Home of Oregon's population and the Oregon State Data Center (SDC) and Business and Industry Data Center (BIDC).
 
Northwest Area Foundation Indicator Website
Data for Oregon, Washington, and Idaho states and counties based on data from a variety of federal and state agencies.  Information includes poverty rates, average wage, and change in population.  Also contains statistics on native american tribes.
 
CensusScope is an easy-to-use tool for investigating U.S. demographic trends, brought to you by the Social Science Data Analysis Network at the University of Michigan. With eye-catching graphics and exportable trend data, CensusScope is designed for both generalists and specialists.
 
The Census offers access to the yearly American Community Survey data, as well as quick fact sheets, tools to ferret out vital statistics and more. 
 
One can use the map tool to create thematic maps of a service area
 
Calculator Tools from Colorado's Library Research Service
This page features a link to a budget calculators developed by the Library Research Service that estimates the cost in future dollars of maintaining current expenses. There are also links to calculators for inflation, current value for past dollars, and more.
 
FedStats - gateway to statistics from over 100 federal agencies
 
Statistical Resources on the Web - University of Michigan Documents Center
 
Melissa DATA: Lookups
Tools for finding crime, income tax and labor statistics by zip code.