META is a multi-year research project begun in the fall of 2008 to provide:
the past several years, many studies of the economic impact of
have been performed both in the U.S. and abroad. Almost all of
these studies concentrated on two basic questions:
show considerable diversity in the populations studied and the
there is evidence that public libraries contribute to the economic
prosperity of the communities they serve; and
these benefits might be reliably characterized.
The META project differs significantly
from prior studies, while making
extensive use of their findings. First, the META project
has a broad scope that is neither population nor geographically specific.
Second, rather than collecting new data, the META
project uses meta-analysis
techniques to draw conclusions developed by integrating the results of
prior studies and probing them for patterns that will:
our understanding of the economic effects of public library services;
out weaknesses and strengths of the methodologies used in earlier
to theory development about the economic benefits of public libraries.