A year after its launch, The Panorama Project, the nascent OverDrive-funded research effort to measure the impact of libraries on book discovery, author brand development, and sales has named Guy LeCharles Gonzalez as its new project leader.
Gonzalez is well-known in the publishing, library, and author communities: he's a former director of content strategy and audience development for Library Journal & School Library Journal—where he worked on Patron Profiles, SELF-e, and The Digital Shift, among other projects—and he was a founding director of programming for Digital Book World. He's also a poet, and a former publisher of Writers Digest.
Gonzalez takes over for Cliff Guren, Panorama's founding project lead. OverDrive CEO Steve Potash praised Guren's work and his "strong leadership," but said the change was made after recognizing that Panorama needed a more aggressive advocacy and outreach component, something which required a presence in New York. Guren, a highly respected consultant with a long history in publishing technology, is based in Seattle.
"With a New York base of operations, Guy is going to take the great body of work we did in just one year, and the tremendous amount of industry participation and interest, and help us take the research we're doing forward," Potash told PW. Citing the "disheartening" recent changes in library e-book and digital audio terms, Potash told PW that Panorama will also also reach out directly to authors and agents about to how libraries impact their work, and to involve them in the project.
"The Panorama Project's core mission remains unchanged: using data to measure the real impact libraries have on developing readers, driving book discovery, and generating book sales in their local communities and beyond," Gonzalez told PW. "In recent years, Patron Profiles and Pew Research Center helped confirm that libraries remain an important driver of reading activity, and that borrowers are also buyers—but surveys can only tell half the story."
Gonzalez said he intends to both build on upon the foundation laid by the effort's Panorama Picks and the Readers’ Advisory Impact Committee initiatives, "while also engaging other industry stakeholders, particularly independent booksellers, authors, agents, allied associations and vendors—to identify ways publishers and libraries can continue to support their intrinsically related missions while delivering mutually beneficial outcomes."