What is Living Learning Libraries?
Living Learning Libraries is an evidence based guide to the development of library services in NSW.
Written in two parts, it provides a practical basis for the comparison among library services, as well as a framework for service assessment and continuous improvement.
This edition uses population-based peer cohorts for benchmarking, allowing easier comparisons among library services based on the populations of their communities. The cohorts are defined as follows:
- rural small population up to 20,000
- urban small population 20,001 to 50,000
- urban medium population 50,001 to 150,000
- urban large population 150,001 and above
Libraries that are below their cohort median for a given standard are encouraged to consider the median as a target to attain. Libraries are encouraged to aim to be the top of their cohort to demonstrate council is delivering best practice services to the local community.
Cohorts are updated annually.
The 2021/22 cohorts are determined using the ABS population figures for June 2020 as used for the 2021/22 NSW Public Library Statistics. The cohorts are used in conjunction with Living Learning Libraries.
- List of library services in 2021-2022 cohorts (in alphabetical order)
- List of library services in 2021-2022 cohorts (by population size)
- List of councils in 2021-2022 cohorts
Benchmarking during the pandemic
The statistical evidence base in 2021/22 has been severely impacted by the COVID-19 lockdown, library building capacity and physical distancing constraints. As a result, a new edition of Living Learning Libraries will be delayed until after the further data is collected and the overall progress towards post-Covid recovery can be determined.
In the interim, councils are encouraged to continue to use the Living Learning Libraries 7th edition – 2020 update to measure their progress and to benchmark themselves against their cohort peer group.
Tables listing the ranking and performance data of libraries within their cohorts using the 2021/22 statistics are provided for libraries to use for benchmarking purposes, noting that they reflect the impact of lockdown and the constraints of building capacity limits and physical distancing requirements across the public library network in NSW.
Individual library benchmark reports are available upon request.
- Library services in cohorts 2020/21
- Councils participating in regional library services in cohorts 2020/21
- Councils in cohorts 2020/21
- Library services in cohorts 2019/20
- Councils participating in regional library services in cohorts 2019/20
- Councils in cohorts 2019/20
- Library services in cohorts 2018/2019
- Regional library services in cohorts 2018/2019
- Councils in cohorts 2018/2019
- Library services in cohorts - 2017/2018
- Regional library services in cohorts - 2017/2018
- Councils in cohorts - 2017/2018
- Library services in cohorts - 2016/2017
- Regional library services in cohorts - 2016/2017
- Living Learning Libraries benchmark tables 2020/21 statistics by standard
- Living Learning Libraries benchmark tables 2020/21 statistics by cohort
Previous editions and updatesLiving Learning Libraries 2014 (5th edition) Living Learning Libraries 2011 (3rd edition)
Earlier editions of Living Learning Libraries are available via Pandora.