Origins of NILPPA: Planning Grant, 2013-14

In 2013, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) awarded the American Library Association a planning grant to support the one-year (October 2013-September 2014) development of a comprehensive research agenda and five-year implementation plan to understand and document the characteristics, audiences, outcomes and value of public programming in libraries at a national level.

The National Impact of Library Public Programs Assessment (NILPPA) aimed to support strategic long-term advancement of understanding of how library programs increase broad public access to knowledge and foster support for lifelong learners across diverse geographic, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, including those with special needs or those underserved by services in their communities.

In December 2014, the NILPPA white paper was published by the ALA Public Programs Office in collaboration with NewKnowledge and a distinguished team of library advisors.

During the three-phase research plan (NILPPA Phase 1, 2017-19) proposed in the white paper, researchers will “map the terrain” of library program types and experiences; collect quantitative and qualitative data to better understand programs, particularly program innovators; create tools and professional competencies related to library programming and develop a model to explain how programming responds to change, affects the perception of libraries and even predicts change in communities.