Documents for a Digital Democracy
A Model for the Federal Depository Library Program in the 21st Century

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The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA) retained Ithaka S+R to conduct a comprehensive study on the state of the Federal Library Depository Program (FDLP) and to recommend how to respond to changes in an increasingly digital, networked environment that have caused a decline in incentives for libraries to participate in the Program.

Following a thorough examination of the Program’s current state, this report suggests a vision for the program: seamless, no fee access to government information for a range of potential users at their point of need and appropriate preservation of this material for future generations.

The project team worked with many in the community concerning the Program’s future, and the report has benefitted tremendously from these conversations. Working towards a strong vision for the future of the FDLP, the federal government, librarians, and the general public, can together reinvigorate this Program and see it continue its role in American democracy.

“I, along with other GPO employees, was interviewed and provided data towards this effort. I have read Documents for a Digital Democracy: A Model for the Federal Depository Library Program in the 21st Century, an Interim Summary, and I must say I am very impressed with the work.”
— Bob Tapella, the Former Public Printer of the United States

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