About Us - Issues

Civic/Community Engagement

Libraries and museums build the civic strength of their communities and providing opportunities for public engagement.

Search the Awarded Grants database for grants to programs that strengthen civic/community engagement (issue areas have only been assigned to grants awarded since FY 2009)

National Initiative: National Medal for Museum and Library Services
The National Medal honors outstanding institutions that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. Selected institutions demonstrate extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service, exceeding the expected levels of community outreach.

Partnership:
StoryCorps
Each year, select museums and libraries receive the National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor for these institutions. Beginning with the 2009 winners,  personal stories demonstrating the ongoing impact of these award-winning institutions are being documented through a cooperative agreement between IMLS and StoryCorps.

Civic/community engagement content on the IMLS Web site:
IMLS to Host Meetings with Library Stakeholders to Inform Future Grant Directions

March 19, 2014 12:37 PM
IMLS will host the first in a series of meetings about future funding strategies at the New York Public Library on April 29. Read More

 
IMLS Grant to Support Development of Library Digital Badging System

March 12, 2014 10:19 AM
IMLS is awarding a $250,000 grant to the Brooklyn Public Library and its partner BiblioCommons for the creation and piloting of an online badging system for libraries. Read More

 
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Institute of Museum and Library Services Announces 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service Finalists

March 3, 2014 09:00 AM
Thirty institutions from across the country are finalists for the 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. Read More

 
Workshop Invitation for American Indian Libraries

February 20, 2014 12:33 PM
IMLS, Department of the Interior, and the Federal Library Information Network (FEDLINK) present a day of Making Connections. Read More

 
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Institute of Museum and Library Services Announces 20th Anniversary of National Medal Program

February 19, 2014 09:37 AM
IMLS celebrates 20 years of the award that has recognized 132 outstanding museums and libraries. Read More

 
Webinar on Immigration Resources for Public Librarians Scheduled

January 16, 2014 10:58 AM
IMLS and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will present the first in a series of free webinars for public libraries about immigration and U.S. citizenship topics on February 4. Read More

 
Call for Applications: 2014 Native American Library Services Basic and Enhancement Grants

December 16, 2013 01:03 PM
The deadline for Native American Library Services Basic Grants and Enhancement Grants is March 3, 2014. Read More

 
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Dartmouth College’s Mary Flanagan and Collections Trust’s Nick Poole To Keynote WebWise 2014

November 27, 2013 10:37 AM
Registration is now open for the Institute of Museum and Library Services’s 2014 WebWise conference, which will take place February 10-12 at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace in Baltimore, MD Read More

 
New Federal Webinar Series Explores Immigration Resources for Public Librarians

November 20, 2013 10:02 AM
Join IMLS and USCIS for a free webinar, Immigration and Naturalization 101, December 12th, 12:30 p.m.-2:00 p.m. EST Read More

 
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IMLS Announces Effort to Strengthen State Museum Associations

November 8, 2013 07:59 AM
Association leaders to convene March 28 and 29 in Bentonville, Arkansas. Read More

 
IMLS Provides $487,158 in Grants for Pacific Territories, Freely Associated States, and Hawaii

September 26, 2013 02:14 PM
IMLS provides support for Pacific Territories, Freely Associated States, and U.S. Virgin Islands through a competitive process. Grants to the region include funding for a project in Honolulu, Hawaii. Read More

 
More than $14.6 Million in Federal Grants Awarded to U.S. Libraries

September 26, 2013 08:13 AM
IMLS announced grants for 63 library projects across the nation through three grant programs, Native American Library Services Enhancement program, the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program, and the National Leadership Grants for Libraries . Read More

 
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Use of Small and Rural Libraries Grows in the Digital Age

September 25, 2013 02:25 PM
More than 77 percent of all public libraries in the United States are small. New IMLS data provide the first federal look at small and rural libraries. Read More

 
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Learn How Museums and Gardens Can Collaborate with Let’s Move! Cities, Towns, and Counties

September 17, 2013 12:32 PM
IMLS will host a free webinar to provide ideas and advice for museums and gardens that wish to collaborate with their local officials in the First Lady Michelle Obama’s Lets Move! initiative. Read More

 
IMLS Awards Nearly $30 Million in Federal Grants to Museums across the U.S.

September 12, 2013 07:41 AM
Across the country museums are innovating to engage their communities, creating exciting new learning experiences, and caring for their rich collections. IMLS will honor museum grantees at a workshop and ceremony in Washington, D.C., on September 18th. Read More

 
IMLS Announces Grant for National Forum on the Role of Public Libraries in Local Open Government

August 28, 2013 08:39 AM
A $99,713 grant to the Center for Technology in Government at the University at Albany is designed to lead to a better understanding of how public libraries help citizens engage with local governments. Read More

 
Grant Awards Announcement: 2013 Sparks! Ignition Grants

July 16, 2013 08:17 AM
The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) today announced 21 awards totaling $496,978 matched with $408,150 of non-federal funds for Sparks! Ignition Grants. Read More

 
IMLS and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to Partner with Libraries

July 1, 2013 09:38 AM
IMLS announces a $286,104 award to OCLC’s WebJunction to meet public demand for information about the Health Insurance Marketplace. Read More

 
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Call for Nominations: 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service


The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is now accepting nominations for the 2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. Museums and libraries that would like to be considered for the National Medal should complete the nomination form by October 15, 2013. Read More

 
MEDIA ADVISORY: Report Highlights Roles of Libraries and Museums in School Success

June 17, 2013 12:28 PM
High level Department of Education and Health and Human Services officials join IMLS and the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading to launch a new report on early learning. Anacostia Library in Washington, DC, hosts June 20 event. Read More

 
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White House Highlights Museum and Library “Champions of Change”

June 10, 2013 11:10 AM
On Tuesday, June 11th, the White House will honor twelve people as museum and library “Champions of Change,” for their work making a difference for their neighborhoods and for our nation. Read More

 
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National Medal for Museum and Library Service to Be Awarded Today at White House

May 8, 2013 08:57 AM
First Lady Michelle Obama presents the 2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. White House celebration recognizes exceptional contributions of 10 museums and libraries. Read More

 
Marsha Semmel
Primary Source Acting Director's Message -- June 2010

June 17, 2010 08:19 AM
This year, we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which ensures the civil rights of people with disabilities. The need to recommit to the ADA is growing. Nearly 20 percent of people aged five and older have some type of long-lasting condition or disability, according to the 2000 U.S. Census. Read More