Public Libraries as Aids to Sense Making in Urban Aboriginal Populations

Monique Woroniak


Aboriginal peoples in Canada increasingly reside in areas outside of their designated reserve lands, with large numbers living in many of the country's Census Metropolitan Areas. This paper discusses the potential for public libraries to aid Aboriginal peoples' sense making efforts in urban environments. A statistical portrait of urban Aboriginal peoples is provided, along with a description of selected key cultural values. Karl E. Weick's seven properties of organizational sense making (as outlined by Chun Wei Choo) are applied in a discussion of how public libraries could better support urban Aboriginal populations. Finally, the work of the Albert branch library in Regina is described as a successful example of the provision of such support.


Aboriginals, urban populations, sense making, public libraries

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