Reading Chicago Reading

Who reads? What do they read? How do they read? These are questions essential to the study of literacy, yet fine-grained answers to these questions are difficult to come by, as noted in To Read or Not To Read, a 2007 report from the NEA. Our project Reading Chicago Reading represents a rare opportunity to seek empirical answers to these questions within a large metropolitan area, with a wide variety of texts, and across a great diversity of readers. Read more

Interactive maps from the ACH 2019 Conference

Our most recent mapping experiment explored whether CPL programming influences circulation for the Chicago-themed “One Book” selections in our dataset. If so, to what degree? What correlations, if any, could be inferred when mapping CPL events and OBOC checkouts for the three Chicago-themed books, The Adventures of Augie March, Warmth of Other Suns, and The Third Coast? Our hunch was that events have a considerable impact on the number of checkouts; however, the data reveals different trends.

Ana and Mihaela made useful visualizations. Because at the Pittsburgh ACH conferenceRead more

What do CPL branch libraries have in common?

As we finish our omnibus white paper on the project, some maps and visualizations have been augmented to include the latest book seasons and recolored to show the branch clusters and checkouts per book. We’ve also excerpted some of the explanation.

 

 

In order to create Figure C, we performed unsupervised clustering of the branches based on their demographic characteristics. We used the Partitioning Around Medioids (PAM) algorithm [Kaufman 1990], which is known to be more robust to noise and outliers compared to the more widely-used k-means algorithm. PAM is more computationally-intensiveRead more