Adjunct Assistant Professor Ellen Knutson (MS '02, PhD '08) and Quanetta Batts, director of outreach and engagement at The Ohio State University Libraries, have coauthored a chapter in the new book, Ask, Listen, Empower: Grounding Your Library Work in Community Engagement (ALA Editions, 2020). Edited by Mary Davis Fournier and Sarah Ostman, the book features contributions by leaders active in library-led community engagement and serves as both an educational resource for LIS students and a "go-to handbook" for current programming, adult services, and outreach library staff.
Knutson's chapter, "Ethical and Inclusive Community Engagement," examines how public and academic libraries’ focus on ethics and inclusion in their community engagement work has strengthened their community relationships.
"Libraries play an anchoring and a boundary-spanning role in their communities that makes them well suited to engage deeply with people in their localities. Yet they, too, need to have a lens of diversity and inclusion in their work," said Knutson, who has worked in the community engagement field for twenty-five years. "I hope that this chapter helps library workers reflect on their current (and future) community engagement endeavors with an eye to making them more inclusive. It’s a journey that we all must be on together."
Knutson is a research associate with the Kettering Foundation and teaches Community Engagement (IS 590) at the iSchool.