“Public Library of the Year” – the search for the world’s best new public library
The search is again on for the "Public Library of the Year”. The award is presented to the best new public library anywhere in the world in terms of focus on community needs, local culture and digital development.
Press release28 February 2018
The world’s best new public library for 2018 will soon be selected by presentation of the annual international “Public Library of the Year” award.
Behind the award are the IT company Systematic and the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA).
“The IFLA Public Libraries Section is delighted to be part of this award, which celebrate excellence in library planning and design. Public libraries are an essential part of a strong community, and being able to acknowledge and share best practice examples helps us ensure that we create great environments for our citizens,” explains Jan Richards, chairperson of the Public Libraries Section in IFLA.
The award goes to a public library that is either newly built or set up in premises that have not previously been used for libraries. To be considered for the award, the library must have been completed in the period from 1 January 2015 to 31 December 2017.
Desire to contribute to innovation and development
The award is accompanied by a prize of USD 5,000 that goes directly to the winning library. This prize money is sponsored by Systematic.
“At Systematic, we are pleased that we are again able to support this award. Libraries play an important role in our society via information and education, and we want to support those efforts. At the same time, we would like to contribute to innovation and development in this specialist field, so that public libraries are able to play an even greater role for people and communities around the world,” says Michael Holm, CEO of Systematic.
The nominated libraries are evaluated in relation to six distinct criteria, which include the extent to which the library takes into account new digital developments, involvement with local culture, sustainability and the wishes and needs of the community.
Award presented in Malaysia in August
The winner is selected by an international professional jury on the basis of an overall assessment of the libraries entered for consideration.
The award was presented for the first time in 2014 in cooperation with the Danish Agency for Culture and Palaces (Slots- og Kulturstyrelsen). This year, the award is being made by the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA), with Systematic still as sponsor.
The most recent winner (in 2016) was the newly built Dokk1 library in Aarhus, Denmark. Here the professional judges placed particular emphasis on the library’s unique central location in the city of Aarhus, which – combined with the open architectural expression both inside and outside – makes Dokk1 a library that is very easily accessible to its target group.
The winner of the “Public Library of the Year” award for 2018 will be announced at the end of August during the 2018 IFLA Annual Meeting, which will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. You can apply for the award from 1 March to 15 May 2018.
"Public Library of the Year” is an annual award presented to the best new public library in the world, embracing user wishes and local culture as well as digital development and functional architecture.
The award is made by by the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA), while Systematic sponsors the USD 5,000 prize, which goes directly to the winning library.
- Public Library of the Year 2016: Dokk 1, Denmark
- Public Library of the Year 2015: Kista Public Library, Sweden
- Public Library of the Year 2014: Craigieburn Library, Australia
In 2015 and 2016 the award was presented in cooperation with the Danish Agency for Culture and Palaces (Slots- og Kulturstyrelsen). The award was not given out in 2017, but will be awarded again in 2018 – now with IFLA as organiser. Systematic was and is still the main sponsor and prize presenter.