Libraries – driving a digital future for Scotland

The Scottish Government published its Digital Public Services FrDigital future wordleamework  on the 19th of September. The document sets out the vision and helps shape how the Scottish Government will move forward with their priority of public service reform over the coming years.

It puts the needs of users at the heart of services.  We know online services mean that we can access information when we require it, pay a bill or even arrange social care in a simple and quick way. The strategy outlines how different organisations can join up across all sectors to deliver services in a more responsive way.

So where is our library and information leadership? This is our opportunity to put forward a business case for libraries now and  in the future Who is going to keep people skilled up? Who will people trust to access much of this?

I believe the future of libraries is in driving and  underpinning this strategy and making it a reality for real people.

Join us at Libraries driving a digital future at the VOCAL conference

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No modesty please!

Surprise surprise ! reading for pleasure continues to be the most popular cultural activity in Scotland, attracting 63 per cent of the adult population in 2011 The Scottish Household Survey .

Image courtesy of Turning Point

Statistics in the Scottish Household Survey show the percentage of adults in Scotland visiting libraries – including online – increased in 2011 compared to the previous 12 months. Libraries were also the most frequently attended type of cultural venue, with six in ten attendees visiting once a month or more.

Our trusted libraries remain one of the free universal services for communities where the population can visit as individuals or groups to pursue reading for pleasure, learning or hobbies. They also support the business community, individual and community information needs and are inclusive of all age and social groups, nationalities, genders and religious beliefs.

Surely our mission should we choose to accept it?  is to assist individuals and communities that are having hard times? We know we can and do help people get back on their feet and provide them with the means and the knowledge that they need to write new CVs, lerarn digital skills, get new jobs, or start new businesses?

Stop saying save our libraries start shouting about impact !

Eye on the future

With an eye on the future Edinburgh’s libraries are are ready to underpin the Scottish Government’s plans for Scotland’s Digital Future

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced “It will also change the way that we live – from the way we book holidays to the way we access health care.  We are committed to ensuring that all of Scotland is able to reap the social and cultural benefits of the internet.

Broadband, just like roads and railways, is a vital part of Scotland’s infrastructure, and that is why we are committed to delivering a world class digital infrastructure to the people of Scotland by 2020.”

Chris van der Kuyl, Chief Executive of Dundee-based online publishing company Brightsolid, said:

“ A digital Scotland to me is a concept that has to be central to our future. As a small country with huge intellectual capacity, digital media and digital  technology have to be right at the core of everything we do going forward.”

Edinburgh’s libraries can support everyone with the information, skills, access to content and opportunities to get on board and benefit from Scotland’s bright future

Making a difference – Dyslexia

Libraries are probably not your first thought if you or a member of your family  are dyslexic but our 3 year partnership with Dyslexia Scotland has changed that in Edinburgh and made a real difference

In line with this thrilling year of Sport, come and toast the Dyslexia Awareness Week programme  in style with a glass of bubbly, in the company of great representatives from the sporting world, all of them Ambassadors for Dyslexia Scotland…be mesmerised by Keith Cook, fencing champion and inspired by Paul McNeill, Scottish Football Association and Chris Tiso of Tiso Group Limited.

Edinburgh Central Library  (Mezzanine Level), Tuesday 6th November, 6.30-8pm
Book online or phone 0131 242 8022

Dyslexia Awareness Week  – Tuesday 6th until Saturday 10th November 2012

 

An APP(t) reminder

One of the first fully transactional public library smartphone apps in the UK, the Edinburgh Library app:

  • Out shopping and seen a book you want to read? Scan the barcode on the back cover to your phone and the libraries app will search the catalogue to see if the library has a copy you can reserve.
  • Couldn’t get to the library to renew your books and DVDs ? Use the Edinburgh Libraries app to log in to your account and do it there and then wherever you are.
  • Keep forgetting your library membership card ? Scan it in to you phone and you won’t need to worry in future. The scan will work on self service and at traditional library counters.

Edinburgh Libraries updated smart phone app is now available and if you already have the previous version you can quickly update it on your phone.

If you are not a member you can still use the app to search the library catalogue, find the nearest Edinburgh library to where you are, when it’s open and how to get there, or just follow the Literary Map of Edinburgh.

Future planning and new models

I am really pleased to be speaking on “It’s time for the future “ at the Future planning and new models  session at the International Internet Librarian 2012 conference in London  on the 30th October

Even at this timInternet Librarian 2012e of economic pressure, Edinburgh’s public libraries are delivering real innovation and creativity. Edinburgh’s Library and Information Service is delivering a new model for libraries across the city, based on a strategic approach which borrows from the retail sector to deliver ‘Next generation library and information services’.

Hope to see you there

Must see !

A new unique centre dedicated to the collection and dissemination of information on Scotland’s contribution to World War 1 opens next week.

The World War 1 History Hub, located in Edinburgh Central LibrEdinburgh's warary is the first such initiative in the United Kingdom and the result of a collaboration with  the University of Edinburgh.

A visually stimulating, dedicated space where the history of Scotland’s contribution to WW1 is brought alive for all generations.

The main focus of the WW1 Hub will be to run workshops and seminars, and carry out military and diaspora genealogy research. Members of the public will have the chance to talk to experts and to find the story of their own family’s World War One history. There will also be a programme of poetry, art and music events, bringing Edinburgh during 1914-1918 to life.

 

 

Move over Orange!

Haven’t I got the smartest team!

Negotiation , partnership development, marketing acumen, skills in social media and technology………………. is us!

Those lovely folks at the Cameo cinema are offering 2 for 1 entry to showings of Liberal Arts to Edinburgh library card holders. Check out our Tales of One City blog

Virtual worldwide conference library 2.0

From the comfort of your home or office -meet colleagues around the world!The Library 2.012 conference is a unique chance to participate in a global conversation on the current and future state of libraries. Subject strands include physical and virtual learning spaces, evolving professional roles in today’s world, organizing and creating information, changing delivery methods, user-centered access, and mobile and geo-social information environments.

Haven’t libraries and librarians come along way!

Rather do it face to face? Join us at EDGE 2013

M – libraries

Yesterday I spoke at theInternational M-Libraries Conference 2012

The main theme of the conference this year was “from margin to mainstream:mobile technologies transforming lives and libraries

 I didn’t realise until I got there that I was the only “public” librarian in a sea of academics.

However the delegates were all very interesting and I really enjoyed the sessions.  I realised we have so much more in common than most people imagine and we could benefit hugely from closer partnerships.

I talked about our portal, our blog,  new projects and our app