The Danish Think Tank – Libraries of the Future

The ambition is to produce knowledge, analysis and cross-disciplinary activities.
To generate professional, public and political debate and awareness of the role of libraries now and in the future.

A bottom-up initiative

The Danish libraries face many challenges such as digitalization and changes in expectations and demands on both physical and digital services; lack of public awareness of library services, changes in library user behavior, lack of political awareness and changes in the role of the librarian. The Think Tank was initiated by the Danish Library Association (DB).

The Think Tank was established in October 2012, and it is co-financed by the participating libraries, library organizations and central library players. Many activities are externally funded, amongst other by the Danish Agency for Culture.

The ambition is to generate new knowledge, analysis and professional, public and political debate about the role of the libraries now and in the future, and hereby contribute to reinventing of the library as one of the major democratic and cultural welfare actors in Denmark.

Analysis & Projects

An overview of the Danish analyses and projects the Danish Think Tank has conducted.

Digital Library Strategies (Study)

The analysis has generated the most detailed collection of data and report focusing on the use of digital library services in Denmark. The data originates from two datasets: A quantitative anthropological analysis and quantitative analysis with more than 6500 respondents. The main report present key findings from the two studies with focus on user segmentation, behaviour, drivers and barriers of digital library use. And finally, major cross-disciplinary findings with focus on correlation between the physical and digital library, digital gender differences, reduction of educational affects and more.
Language: Danish

The Economic Value of Public Libraries

The Danish Think Tank Libraries of the Future and Copenhagen Economics has conducted the first study on the economic impact of the Danish public library. The Danish public libraries provide multiple services to the Danish public today, which overall seems to be well received by the public. However, the contributions are often measured in terms of library use (e.g. how many books were borrowed) and user satisfaction surveys, which are far from adequate when we want to discuss the role libraries play in modern society. This study digs deeper and provide the first assessment of the economic value of the public libraries in Denmark. 
Read about the project here.


Volunteers at public libraries

Report about volunteers at public libraries: facts, values and expectations. The report was launched at a conference with focus on ‘new ways of volunteering’, democracy, citizenship, participation and the role of the libraries of the future.

Students’ reading preferences

Analysis of reading preferences of 500 Danish students. The survey’s focus is on the preferences for digital or physical materials, gender, level of education and the expectation and needs of the digital and physical library in general.

Libraries of the future – a segment analysis

The analysis has generated the most detailed collection of data and report focusing on the use of libraries, barriers and drivers conducted by Moos Bjerre Analysis. More than 2000 people participated, with special focus on young people between age 15 – 29. The report generated detailed operational knowledge around 10 segments and strategic policy input on the role of the public libraries.


The public library: a design – anthropologic approach

A cooperation between the Danish Agency for Culture, Danish School for Media and Journalism and the Think Tank to produce anthropologic data and concepts for the public libraries of the future. A design anthropologic team developed concepts and development paths together with 8 public libraries and their users and non-users.

Participating libraries & library players

The Think Tank is created and financed by 30 libraries, 4 library organizations and a few private companies – all participating as members in a variety of activities: analysis, workshops, debates, networks, conferences and campaigns. 

Public libraries from the following municipalities participate in the Think Tank’s activities:

Ballerup Municipality • Billund Municipality • Esbjerg Municipality • Frederikssund Municipality • Gladsaxe Municipality • Municipality of Glostrup • Helsingør Municipality• Herning Municipality • Municipality of Hjørring • Holbæk Municipality • Horsens Municipality • Hørsholm Municipality • Kolding Municipality • The Municpality of Køge • Copenhagen Municipality • Nyborg Municipality • Næstved Municipality • Odense Municipality • Randers Municipality • Roskilde Municipality • Silkeborg Municipality• Slagelse Municipality • Svendborg Municipality • Sønderborg Municipality • Vejle Municipality • Viborg Municipality • Aabenraa Municipality • Aalborg Municipality • Municipality of Aarhus


Lotte Hviid Dhyrbye
Phone: +45 27631494