Preliminary 2011 Public Library Statistics Released: Tell us Your Story

Posted by Lisa Strand on Monday, July 02, 2012 in Libraries in the News

The DPI's Division for Libraries & Technology has just released the preliminary public library statistics for 2011, based on annual reports submitted by public libraries throughout the state of Wisconsin.

Some quick comparisons with 2010 (keeping in mind the 2011 figures are preliminary and additional analyses are yet to come):

  • Summer library program attendance jumped by nearly 6%, with 517,776 children aged 18 and under participating in 2011 versus 488,265 in 2010.

  • Overall attendance at all programming increased by 3%, from 1,981,449 attendees in 2010 to 2,042,428 attendees in 2012.

  • Despite higher attendance, total registered borrowers fell by 2.2%.

  • Users of public Internet computers fell by 4.7%, while the number of public use Internet-connected computers increased by 11.3%.

  • Total library staff held steady, with 3,023 total library staff in 2011, compared with 3,026 in 2010. There were about 2% more MLS librarians on staff working in libraries in 2011 than in 2010. In addition, wages and benefits increased less than 1% each.

  • Total income for libraries increased an average of 2.4% statewide, while operating expenditures increased an average of 1.4%.

  • Annual hours open held fairly steady, while the number of service outlets increased by nearly 4%, from 339 in 2010 to 353 in 2011.

  • Overall circulation declined by 1.2%, but circulation of children’s material was up 2%. Of course, the big story was in the increase of electronic (downloadable) materials: There was an increase of 60.2% for e-books, 43.4% for audio and 7.3% for video materials downloadable through a library.

Statistics are interesting, but they don’t tell the whole story. Tell us how your library is doing (what’s working, challenges faced and plans for the future) by adding a comment to this article.



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