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Wisconsin's Special Libraries

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Strong special libraries keep us all in a better state! Special libraries, including medical, law, corporate and religious libraries, provide vital services in the specialized environments in which they operate. For example, a study of more than 200 physicians found that 80 percent handled some aspect of their patients’ care differently than they otherwise would have when provided with information from medical libraries.

In fact, almost one-fifth of those physicians also said that the services and information provided by the library contributed to their ability to “avoid patient mortality.” In addition to saving lives, special libraries and librarians are important for many other reasons, including:

  • In the information and knowledge age, special libraries are essential—they provide the competitive advantage by responding quickly to critical information needs.
  • Information professionals, as special librarians are often called, play a unique role in gathering, organizing and coordinating access to the best available information sources, and they understand the critical need of turning that information into usable knowledge.
  • Special libraries are also leaders in creating and practicing standards for the ethical and appropriate use of information.

Special Library Profile

  • RMT, Inc.

    For most people who hear the phrase “consulting firm,” a library does not immediately spring to mind. However, for environmental consulting firm RMT, Inc., a library is an indispensable part of their…

The library connects us with the insight and knowledge, painfully extracted from Nature, of the greatest minds that ever were, with the best teachers, drawn from the entire planet and from all our history, to instruct us without tiring, and to inspire us to make our own contribution to the collective knowledge of the human species. I think the health of our civilization, the depth of our awareness about the underpinnings of our culture and our concern for the future can all be tested by how well we support our libraries.

Carl Sagan (1934-1996)

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation

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