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Why and how do workplace library users utilise library space for non-library activities

Clarkson, Morag

The aim of this study is to critically analyse the reasons why NHS staff go to a workplace library to carry out activities which are not specifically related to the library. Qualitative one-to-one interviews were conducted with a convenience sample of library users to discover themes around usage at Croydon Health Services NHS Trust.

Research into public libraries suggests that library use supports well-being and social capital. There is little literature relating to NHS library use and well-being or social capital. Generally, research into NHS libraries focuses on the services provided e.g. a clinical librarian service or access to online resources. Many measures of usage are quantitative rather than qualitative metrics. However, public bodies have recently published qualitative value measures of public library use. A similar qualitative measure could be used to critically evaluate usage of the NHS workplace library.

It emerged from the study results that participants found the workplace library positively impacted on their wellbeing and was used as a third space in the workplace, in addition to providing a full library service. Respondents valued the quiet, non-hierarchical and non-judgmental environment.

This dissertation  was submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the degree MSc in Public Administration from London South Bank University 2015

London South Bank University 2015
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