Metrics, Metrocentricity, and Governance Models: The Uneven Transformation of Libraries

  • Dale Leorke
  • Danielle Wyatt


Drawing on our discussion of public libraries internationally (Chapter  2) and in Victoria, Australia (Chapter  3), this chapter elaborates on the emergent challenges they face as a result of their entanglement in the smart city. We examine three broad challenges. First, we argue there is a gap between the new expectations imposed on libraries and the way they are measured and evaluated by government organisations, with measurement frameworks that fail to account for their newly expanded role. Second, we argue for a renewed approach to the governance of libraries, calling for planners and policymakers to recognise their more complex, multifarious, and dispersed contribution to the life of the communities they serve. Lastly, we argue that reinvigorated investment in libraries has been highly uneven, with libraries in urban locations attracting considerable high-profile investment at the expense of regional and outer-urban libraries.


Library assessment Library governance Metrics Public libraries Regional and rural libraries Smart cities 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dale Leorke
    • 1
  • Danielle Wyatt
    • 2
  1. 1.Tampere UniversityTampereFinland
  2. 2.University of MelbourneBalaclava, MelbourneAustralia

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