Vanessa Kitzie: 0000-0002-6499-9584

Travis Wagner: 0000-0002-6000-157X

Nick Vera: 0000-0001-5715-7293

Document Type


Subject Area(s)

Library & Information Science


The World Café (TWC) methodology is a form of action research that develops collective knowledge among individuals and communities to address shared problems. TWC can complement LIS research and practice that is increasingly participatory and community centric. The potentials and pitfalls for TWC are illustrated by ongoing research examining public library service to LGBTQIA+ communities for health information. The authors used TWC in a community forum between LGBTQIA+ community leaders and librarians/paraprofessionals in [name removed for blind review]. Per TWC conventions, participants engaged in day-long rotating café-style table conversations that encouraged new ideas and collective dialog. Discussion centered on two themes: barriers to health information faced by LGBTQIA+ communities and collective strategies for leaders and librarians/para- professionals to address them. Findings indicate that TWC can advance LIS research and practice in the following ways: refuting deficit frameworks, fostering information communities, and supporting social-justice-oriented praxis. Methodological shortcomings relate to the blind spots TWC affords to social inequality and power. The authors recommend that researchers and practitioners should incorporate intersectional and reflexive methods into TWC to address these shortcomings.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

APA Citation

Kitzie, V. L., Pettigrew, J., Wagner, T. L., & Vera, A. N. (2020). Using the World Café Methodology to support community-centric research and practice in library and information science. Library & Information Science Research, 101050.