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The role of cafès in public libraries in New Zealand : an investigation into the impact of a cafè on the image of the "library as a place"

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dc.contributor.author Prue, Irene Mary
dc.date.accessioned 2013-03-26T00:14:05Z
dc.date.accessioned 2022-11-02T03:19:45Z
dc.date.available 2013-03-26T00:14:05Z
dc.date.available 2022-11-02T03:19:45Z
dc.date.copyright 2005
dc.date.issued 2005
dc.identifier.uri https://ir.wgtn.ac.nz/handle/123456789/28670
dc.description.abstract Using a mixed method approach this study investigated the role of cafes in public libraries in New Zealand and the impact of a cafe on the image of the ' library as place". Given the trend of including cafes in Public Libraries in New Zealand and the lack of research in this area, this research aimed to investigate management and customer perceptions and experiences of libraries with cafes. To examine if there is an association between what managers intend to achieve with what customers experience. To explore if having a cafe in a public library impacts on how customers perceive the library as a place. A web-based survey was chosen as the most appropriate method of collecting data from public library managers and focus groups were utilized to facilitate group discussion with Christchurch City Libraries South Library customers. While this research cannot be generalized to all public libraries with cafes and to all customers who use a public library with a cafe it does provide some useful insights. Library managers are incorporating cafes into their libraries to assist in promoting the library as a community meeting place and as a leisure destination for a recreation and a socializing. These were themes that were reflected very strongly in the focus group data with the library referred to frequently as a community place and as a focal point for the area. The responses from the focus group participants tend to suggests that the role of the library is changing as it is not the only place to go to get information. The need for a leisure experience can be the primary motivation to visit the library rather than the need for information or a book to borrow. A cafe in a library significantly increases the non-informational space in a library and encourages and provides for alternative uses of the library as a place. However, not all library sites with a cafe are the same and there are variables that will affect the likely impact of a cafe on customer's image of the library as a place. This research examined some of these variables that apply to integration of a cafe into the library space and then examined the relative significance that the focus group participants place on these variables. The results of this research indicated that libraries are generally accepted as being an appropriate place for a cafe and that cafes in libraries do contribute to the development of a different 'place image' than that which has existed in the past. Having a cafe in a public library creates a dynamic space where what the library as a place means, how it is socially constructed changes. However not all customers had an initial positive reaction and some may choose not to use the library because of what they perceive to be the negative impact it has on their experience. For some people the cafe may prohibit rather than encourage use of the library. The additional noise that the cafe generates was identified by both groups as the primary disadvantage of having a cafe in a library. Even focus group participants, who use the cafe regularly, felt the need for choice and options. There were some comments that indicate that there are people who feel that having a cafe in a library detracts from traditional library roles. en_NZ
dc.language en_NZ
dc.language.iso en_NZ
dc.publisher Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington en_NZ
dc.subject cafe en_NZ
dc.subject public library en_NZ
dc.subject 'library as place' en_NZ
dc.title The role of cafès in public libraries in New Zealand : an investigation into the impact of a cafè on the image of the "library as a place" en_NZ
dc.type Text en_NZ
vuwschema.contributor.unit School of Information Management en_NZ
vuwschema.type.vuw Masters Research Paper or Project en_NZ
thesis.degree.discipline Library and Information Studies en_NZ
thesis.degree.name Master of Library and Information Studies en_NZ

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