I am moving on from Edinburgh and I’ve been so busy recently I haven’t made time to keep up my blog!
I have had a fabulous 5 years here and I’m proud to say we have become the UK’s Best Library and Information service
We have recognised how effectively pushing the boundaries of public service delivery can create a more cost-effective estate, build stronger communities and promote economic vitality through our network of 28 libraries. WE have done much of this by driving a new vision as hybrid libraries- a combination of a conventional library and our innovative electronic library. To do all of this Edinburgh library and information service needed to consolidate the building blocks for change and scalability through the use of practical toolkits to support new ways of working and embed performance improvement.
I look forward to taking these skills and passion to a new role.
Maybe these libraries are on another continent but we all still share the same problems and values.
This report The State of America’s Libraries 2013 confirms that libraries continue to play a transformative role in their communities even after an economic recession that has left about 12 million Americans unemployed and millions more underemployed.
Over 16,000 public libraries nationwide “offer a lifeline to people trying to adapt to challenging economic circumstances by providing technology training and online resources for employment, access to government resources, continuing education, retooling for new careers, and starting a small business,” Maureen Sullivan, president of the American Library Association, said in an open letter published July 10, 2012.
“More than ever, libraries are community hubs, and it is the librarian who works to maintain a safe harbor for teens, a point of contact for the elderly, and a place to nurture lifelong learning for all.”
This story on Edinburgh Libraries’ OurTownStories is a short survey of some outstanding Victorian women from Edinburgh. It celebrates some of the important female figures from Edinburgh’s past and tells how they made their mark on history. Many of these women were lucky enough to come from wealthy families and had the financial means to push at the imposed boundaries of their lives.
Most of these women of achievement strove to obtain roles in society where they could better the position of other females, by the provision of education, healthcare or the right to vote.Read a fascinating snapshot of each woman’s life and find out how their campaigning and dedication changed the lives of other women. Read this story Edinburgh’s Women of Achievement
The review has just been published (press release and actual review) and makes for interesting reading. (NB, although it says England in the title, as the ‘big six’ publishers are national or international companies, and because it covers PLR, its findings will probably end up applying to Wales as well.) It sets out that it “attempts to establish some ground rules on which publishers and libraries can agree to move forward in expanding digital lending offers.”
It’s a pretty easy report to read, and on my very initial quick reading of it, I would say that the findings are generally quite positive…
World Book Night is a celebration of reading and books which sees tens of thousands of passionate volunteers gift specially chosen and printed WBN books in their communities to share their love of reading.
Things are moving fast as we finalise all our events for World Book Night on 23rd April 2013, the biggest literary event of the year.
There will be lots of events to celebrate right across the city and for those of you who fancy a ‘black tie’ event why not come to Edinburgh’s beautiful Central Library which will be transformed to host our World Book Nght flagship event for our flagship event, ‘World Book Night – Bond is back!’.
Each year WBN recruit 20,000 volunteers to hand out 20 copies of their favourite book from the WBN list to members of their community who don’t regularly read. By enlisting thousands of passionate book lovers around the country World Book Night reaches out to the millions of people in the UK who have yet to fall in love with reading in the hope that we can start them on their reading journey. In addition World Book Night distributes half a million books directly to the hardest to reach potential readers in prisons, care homes, hospitals, sheltered, supported and social housing, the homeless and through partner charities working throughout the UK. World Book Night is about giving books and encouraging reading in those who don’t regularly do so. But it is also about more than that: it’s about people, communities and connections, about reaching out to others and touching lives in the simplest of ways, through the sharing of stories.
A red carpet event for guests and givers to hear a star studded line up of authors…join us!
The legend of Greyfriars Bobby is known the world over, and we’re celebrating the life one of our city’s favourite characters with some very special events. Look out for more details over the coming days
I was recently asked to sum up our success and significant upturn in performance in an email and found it almost impossible. However In 2012 Edinburgh won the Bookseller Library Service of the Year Award and I think this sums up our success pretty well. The award was launched to recognise library services which are thriving and innovating in a difficult climate and increasing access and performance.
Edinburgh was considered against a range of libraries across the UK. Judges identified our key strengths as:
* Range of services for hard to reach readers
* A cutting edge website and Library App
* Engaging social media activity
* Committed support from the local authority.
Judges concluded that Edinburgh Libraries & Information Services are “innovative on so many fronts, full of energy, bang up to date and unafraid of the future”. Providing “a template for libraries everywhere to be inspired by.”
This is the third national libraries award won by the city’s library service in two years. In July 2010, the service was successful in winning the Libraries Change Lives Award from the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals for HMP Edinburgh Library Partnership (Saughton Prison).
This was followed in 2011 with the ‘Whose Town’ Project achieving the Scottish Design Awards Chairman’s Award.
Key to any success is the fantastic teamwork and innovative thinking in our staff. It is the power to drive and embrace change
If you would like to know more we are hosting our annual EDGE 2013 conference 28th February – 1st March and we would be delighted to put some flesh on the bones of this short summary