Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Subject Area(s)

disability in libraries


Twenty percent of Australians reported having a disability in 2015. Disability may occur at any time during the lifespan, however most disabilities are invisible. When a disability is invisible, or not immediately apparent to an outsider, individuals may need to self-identify to access inclusive services, or accommodation may never be offered at all.

When the perceived number of information seekers with a disability is low, information organisations may deem services unnecessary. Considering information access is a human right, information service providers and researchers need to seek low cost and low effort ways to facilitate information access and information seeking behaviors.

The research question was “how does the ambiance, security, and mores (conceptualized as “atmosphere”) of information services facilitate, or create barriers to, information seeking by people with an invisible disability?”. Data from 23 semi-structured qualitative interviews were analysed to explore the experiences of people with an invisible disability as current or prospective library users.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

APA Citation

Muir, R., Thompson, K., & Qayyum, A. (2019). Considering “Atmosphere” when Facilitating Information Seeking by People with Invisible Disabilities in Public Libraries. Proceedings of the 82nd ASIS&T Annual Meeting: Information…Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime, Anywa, 56(1), 216–226.