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Redmond Kathleen Molz

Redmond Kathleen Molz is Professor of Public Affairs at the School ofInternational and Public Affairs, Columbia University.

Titles by This Author

The American Public Library in the Information Age

Quintessentially American institutions, symbols of community spirit and the American faith in education, public libraries are ubiquitous in the United States. Close to a billion library visits are made each year, and more children join summer reading programs than little league baseball. Public libraries are local institutions, as different as the communities they serve. Yet their basic services, techniques, and professional credo are essentially similar; and they offer, through technology and cooperative agreements, myriad materials and information far beyond their own walls.

In Civic Space/Cyberspace, Redmond Kathleen Molz and Phyllis Dain assess the current condition and direction of the American public library. They consider the challenges and opportunities presented by new electronic technologies, changing public policy, fiscal realities, and cultural trends. They draw on site visits and interviews conducted across the country; extensive reading of reports, surveys, and other documents; and their long-standing interest in the library's place in the social and civic structure. The book uniquely combines a scholarly, humanistic, and historical approach to public libraries with a clear-eyed look at their problems and prospects, including their role in the emerging national information infrastructure.

The library field as a whole, functions unaware of how federal decisions affecting the profession are made. This well-written book will greatly increase librarians' understanding of the background and development of the position of the federal government toward library support and of the entire machinery that controls the planning, budgeting, and administering of legislated programs.

Analyzed here are the federal priorities for funding in accordance with stated objectives, along with the capabilities of the existing legislated programs to meet them.