Urban Libraries Council Honors Toronto Public Library with Innovation Award

October 18, 2019 | Media Relations

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“Know Your Vote TO” Demonstrates Cutting-Edge Approach to Transforming Public Libraries

Know Your Vote T.O.
Know Your Vote T.O.

The Urban Libraries Council announced Toronto Public Library (TPL) as one of 10 Top Innovators during the 2019 Innovations Celebration held on October 17 in Salt Lake City. The annual Innovations award program recognizes leading practices from ULC’s member library systems across the U.S. and Canada.

A panel of expert judges selected TPL's Know Your Vote TO from 260 submissions in 10 categories that showcase out-of-the box thinking and creative applications of library resources. TPL won in the category of Civic and Community Engagement. Award winners were recognized for their level of creativity, ability for other libraries to adapt their work and the outcomes achieved. All 2019 ULC Innovations can be viewed at urbanlibraries.org.

“This year’s winners put forth bold ideas that will fundamentally bring about positive change,” said Urban Libraries Council President and CEO Susan Benton. “For this year’s Innovations Initiative, we received our most diverse and exceptional submissions to date. We celebrate Toronto Public Library for presenting a groundbreaking initiative that is sure to transform their community and inspire libraries across North America.”

On the Know Your Vote T.O. website, voters learned about the Toronto City Council candidates running to represent their neighbourhood, how candidates thought Toronto should tackle big issues facing our city and how decisions are made in the city they call home. Companion events brought voters together to discuss important issues. Simple, visual and neutral explanations of the biggest issues facing the city provided essential context to voters. A non-partisan advisory board ensured that questions to candidates and publication practices were administered without bias. 

"This is Canada’s first user-friendly, responsive and accessible library website that allows voters to easily find their ward and candidate information. Site code is available open source for the library community to adapt and we are proud to help support an engaged citizenship," said Pam Ryan, Director, Service Development & Innovation, at TPL.

About Toronto Public Library

Toronto Public Library is the world's busiest urban public library system. Last year, we had more than 17 million visits to our branches and 29 million virtual visits. Torontonians borrowed more than 30 million items in branches and online. To learn more, visit tpl.ca, call Answerline at 416-393-7131 or follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and subscribe to email updates.

Media contact:

Toronto Public Library

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