LISU Tel: +44 (0) 1509 63 5680  Loughborough University

Publications and online resources


LISU published compilations of statistical information about libraries and for librarians and reports on the results of its statistical surveys and research projects. In addition, it also published two popular online resources,, a readers guide to adult fiction authors and (see below for further information).

Online resources


The provision of and has been transferred from LISU (Loughborough University) to Fiction Explorer Ltd. Please visit for further information.
is an online reference resource and reading-promotion tool which is designed to help anyone who enjoys reading fiction to expand the number of writers they read. logo
is specially designed to help parents, teachers and librarians in encouraging children and young people to explore the world of reading. When children ask: “Who can I read next?” or “Who writes like my favourite author?”, the answers can be found in this invaluable online resource. 


Research reports

Most of LISU's recent research reports have been published by the commissioning body, and details will be found on our research and consultancy pages under the individual projects. Those published by LISU are listed below.

MAIPLE report cover imageManaging Access to the Internet in Public Libraries (Mar 2015)
How do public libraries manage to prevent users from accessing ‘unacceptable’, obscene, or otherwise illegal material and protect minors from harm on the internet? And what impact do measures taken have on our right to freedom of expression and freedom of access to information? For the past two years, a team at Loughborough University have been researching this sensitive issue, thanks to funding from the Arts & Humanities Research Council. This report presents the findings from the MAIPLE project, including recommendations for practitioners involved in managing access to the Internet in public libraries. More information

Sunday Opening book coverSunday Opening (Dec 2008)
This report presents the results of a research project, the aim of which was to present an analysis of Sunday opening in a varied selection of public library authorities in the UK with the intention of discovering a set of key success factors to inform others who also may wish to open. More information


Digest coverDigest of Statistics
The main purpose of these statistics is to give a broad overall perspective of the museums, libraries and archives scene in England. The Digest of Statistics was produced with the support of MLA and is available to download free online in PDF format. More information

Trends in Scholarly Journal Prices 2000-2006 (Apr 2007)
This report, published with the permission of Oxford Journals, a division of Oxford University Press, updates and extends the work carried out in 2004 analysing general trends in academic journal prices for a range of publishers.
More information

Children's Right to Read School Textbooks
Part one - Availability of school textbooks in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (Feb 2006)
Part two - Availability of school textbooks in Scotland (Sep 2006)
These reports, published with the permission of the RNIB, document the results of the 'Children's Right to Read School Textbooks' project undertaken by LISU for the RNIB. The projects were part of the long-running 'Right to Read' Campaign. More information

Best Practice in Data Collection (Mar 2006)
Report of a benchmarking exercise for Leicestershire Library Services and Warwickshire Library and Information Service. This is an anonymised version of a report produced for a small group of county library authorities, looking at the relative cost of library services and library use indicators.
More information

Availability of Accessible Publications (May 2005)
This report, published with the permission of the Royal National Institute of the Blind, documents a project to develop reliable estimates of the availability of publications accessible to visually impaired persons (VIPs). The study was commissioned by RNIB in 2004, and the findings supported the Right to Read Alliance's Campaign. The report describes the methodology used to develop the estimates and outlines a strategy to update estimates so that the impact of the campaign can be monitored. Results are presented for the estimated availability of all categories of books printed during a five year period (1999-2003), and for books in certain genres over the same time period. More information

Scholarly Journal Prices: Selected Trends and Comparisons (Oct 2004)
This report, published with the permission of Oxford Journals, a division of Oxford University Press, documents the results of the Journals Pricing Analysis project, undertaken by LISU for OUP. More information

As Others See Us: Benchmarking in Practice (Mar 2003)
This report comprises descriptions of four individual process benchmarking exercises undertaken by a consortium of four UK universities. As a distillation of professional expertise and experience it offers a vaulable insight into benchmarking methodologies and applications for service improvement. It will benefit readers in the wider LIS community, not just those working in academic libraries.More information

Clearing the way: Copyright clearance in UK libraries (Feb 2002)
Reports the findings of a comprehensive national study of institutional policies and procedures for obtaining clearance for the use of copyright material. The emphasis is on the higher education sector.
(Available online - pdf 718KB)

Out of sight but not out of mind: Visually impaired people’s perspectives of library & information services (Nov 2001)
This large print report documents the results of a Resource funded project involving a national survey examining visually impaired people’s perceptions, opinions and activities regarding the information and library services that are available.
(Text only versions - no graphics - available free online in the following versions: Rich Text Format, Microsoft Word, html.)

The cost of copyright compliance in further and higher education institutions (July 2001)
Reports an investigation for the Library Association on the direct and indirect costs incurred by HE and FE institutions in complying with copyright laws, with an introduction detailing all the relevant issues.
(Available online - pdf 172KB)

Economic Evaluation Model of National Electronic Site Licence Initiative (NESLI) ‘Deals’ (March 2001)
The Report documents work undertaken to assess the value of electronic journal subscription deals offered by a range of publishers under the National Electronic Site Licence Initiative (NESLI).
(Available online - pdf 184KB)

Public library services for visually impaired people (June 2000)
LISU was funded by the Library and Information Commission in 1999 to carry out a comprehensive survey of public library service provision for visually impaired people in the UK. This is a report of the findings.
(Available online - pdf 280KB)

Trend analysis of monograph acquisitions in public and university libraries in the UK (March 2000)
Reports a detailed analysis (by acquisition date, subject area and format) of a unique data set, consisting of a sample of acquisitions by public and academic libraries since 1980. Some interesting trends are uncovered.
(Available online - pdf 342KB)

A survey of NHS libraries: Statistics from the NHS Regional Librarians Group
The most recent survey of the operations and performance of NHS libraries covers 2000-01. Published electronically for the first time, it includes summary statistics on expenditure on staff and materials, sources of funding, stock and loans, electronic searches, subject and organisational coverage and inter-library lending. Please email LISU to obtain a copy of this report.

Survey of secondary school library users (Aug 1999)
This report describes a survey of 400 pupils, carried out in the libraries of four London secondary schools - two state and two independent. Of value to school librarians and teacher-librarians who are developing services and want their school library to contribute more to the teaching/learning process.
(Available online - pdf 362KB)

The impact of non-fiction lending from public libraries (Aug 1999)
Analyses impact upon library users according to six different borrowing motivations: for practical purposes, hobbies, work, study, pleasure, and ‘personal development’. Provides evidence for the advocacy of public libraries, and to inform stock management processes.
(Available online - pdf 240KB)

Perspectives of public library use 2 (Jul 1999)
A summary of research (1995-98) of interest to public librarians and the book trade, gathered from government reports, public library authorities, academic departments and student dissertations. Produced jointly by LISU and Book Marketing Ltd. A PDF copy can be downloaded here.


Discontinued statistical series

Library statistics  logoTrends in UK library and publishing statistics
Ten-year trends in UK library and publishing statistics,
which supersede the LAMPOST. More information


Libraries, Archives, Museums and Publishing Online Statistics Tables (LAMPOST)
The LAMPOST was the successor to the LIST - incorporating most of the LIST tables, together with a wider coverage of the museums and archives sectors. Most of the data cover the whole UK, and it is freely available online. This is now superseded by LISU's Trends in UK library and publishing statistics above. More information

Fines and Charges in Public Libraries in England and Wales
Report covering public libraries in England and Wales, giving full details of the charges made, and concessions available, for loans. More information

Average Prices of Academic Books
This publication replaced the biannual Average Prices of British and USA Academic Books. The publication, available electronically or in print, gives detailed analysis of average UK and USA academic book prices by subject category, for the most recent and the previous academic year. Broad trends over the last ten years are also described. This publication is an essential aid to budget preparation for all academic and special librarians. More information

Average Prices of British and USA Academic Books
Twice-yearly publications in February and August gave detailed analysis of average prices by subject category and trends in major categories. An essential aid to budget preparation for academic and special librarians. Also available on CD-Rom from July to December 2003 editions onwards. More information

Public Library Materials Fund and Budget Survey 2007–2009
Annual, sponsored by Nielsen Book. This gave details of both the estimated and actual expenditure on various categories of materials by public library authorities in the UK. Summary figures and commentary on the changes were supplemented by details for each authority. Changes in staffing levels and service points were also covered.
More information

LISU Annual Library Statistics 2006
featuring Trend Analysis of UK Public & Academic Libraries 1995-2005

Summarised the current position on libraries of all types in the UK. Where available, trend information is shown for up to ten years. Public library data are derived from the extensive set collected by CIPFA, and include some user survey information. Statistics from university and HE college libraries are based on figures collected by SCONUL, and statistics are included from Government Departments. The three UK national libraries are included, together with relevant data on a wide range of general statistics of value to librarians and the book trade. More information

A Survey of Library Services to Schools and Children in the UK 2005-06
Based on a detailed questionnaire survey, it includes tables of individual authority data, with explanatory comments, summaries and per capita indicators, covering children's services in the public library and support provided through Schools Library Services. A supplement to the main report gives detailed data by government office region for England.
More information

Library and Information Statistics Tables
The LIST was an annual sampler of UK library statistics from all sectors. It covers public, academic, special, national and school libraries and is available free online for the following years: 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997.


Seminar proceedings

Statistics in Practice - Measuring and Managing
Papers from an international array of specialist contributors to the IFLA Satellite Conference, held at Loughborough University in August 2002. Fourteen papers and six poster summaries cover the practical applications of statistics and performance indicators to library management in all sectors. More information

Managing for value and performance - Processes in developing library plans and best value: Proceedings of a LISU seminar 7-8 March 2000 (Feb 2001)
Includes several contributions from leading public librarians on their approach to developing Annual Library Plans and their experiences in managing within Best Value contexts.


Website Maintained by:
LU Home - Accessibility - Legal Information - © Loughborough University