Shopping Centres with Libraries

I am right now in South Africa starting the MobilED initiatives’ first school tests. More information about the products, services and testing of them will be soon in the MobilED web site. I am going to report some highlights – if there will be any – of the MobilED in Flosse Posse, as well.

Today in South Africa here is a local election. I obviously do not have a right to vote, but the discussions on the elections and my first had experience of organizing my life in here has open up me with an idea. Municipalities and cities should demand each new shopping centre to have a public library with fast Internet connection (WLAN).

I know in Finland there are some shopping centres with public library and I am sure this is the case in some other countries, as well. What is new in my idea is the use of law (or city councils decision) to force this to happen.

Like almost everywhere around the world, also in SA, people’s daily shopping is very fast moving to shopping centres. I do not like this development and think people should demand local markets and shops close to their homes and vote with their legs. Still it looks that what ever we do there will be more shopping centres around us. What would be easy solution to make the shopping centres a bit more human and to have a little contribution to common good, would be a law forcing each shopping centre to have a public library with fast Internet connections in its facilities.

I do not believe that shopping centres will ever do this as part of their “social responsibility program”. That is why there should be a law. However, I am sure the law would be easier to accept by the shopping centres than the taxes they are currently paying. This is a “win-win-solution”. The public library would bring new customers to the shopping centre and other way around. You are more willing to pay when you see the benefits – social and economical – right in your own property.

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