Monday, April 5, 2010

Zadar Public Library

[bookdrop outside Gradska knjižnica Zadar - City Library of Zadar]

16 March, 2010

(Day 3)

This was the only public library which we visited on our trip. It was a shining example of what a library can do and be for a community. Upon our arrival, we were greeted by the (now familiar) Mladen Masar. We walked through the library to a meeting room where we watched a powerpoint presentation on the library's history. 
It was founded over 60 years ago, but has been destroyed, rebuilt, and remodeled since then. There are several branches as well as a bookmobile and delivery service. 
Mladen described the library organization and the many community events which it sponsors. There have been substantial efforts to market this library, which have paid off. This library appears to enjoy a leadership standing in the Zadar community. It is a "model library" for Croatia, and works to teach other libraries in Croatia how to improve their services. 

The services of the library are free, but a borrowing card has a modest annual fee. There are currently 17,000 card holders. Only about 50% of the library's funding comes from the city. The other half comes from the federal government and even the EU. That's different. 

I was impressed with the shiny newness and offerings. I was curious about policy-level decisions in this library. How does collection development work? What kind of guidelines are in place, and what kind of priorities are made? How balanced is the collection? Considering the library sustained some (relatively minor compared to other libraries) damage during the Homeland War, were there any "deaccession issues"? 

We all receive 126-page Annual Reports. Our instructor's photo (Marta Deyrup) is on page 102.

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