Latest library catalogues added to Discover: Eton College, National Library of Scotland and University of Coventry

We’re pleased to announce that the holdings of Eton College Library, National Library of Scotland and the University of Coventry Library have been added to the Discover service.

Eton College Library

Eton College Library

Eton College Library

Eton College Library was established in the 1440s as the library of the Provost and Fellows, who form the governing body of Eton College. Today it holds more than 150,000 items, ranging from the 9th to 21st centuries. These include nearly 200 medieval and Renaissance manuscripts; ca 26,000 printed items of the 15th-19th centuries (including 194 incunabula and the Waddington Pamphlet Collection of ca 4700 pamphlets, tracts and sermons dating from the 16th-18th centuries); the Macnaghten Library of First World War materials, presented to Eton as a memorial in 1938 (ca 5000 volumes); literary manuscripts and autograph letters; and prints and drawings. Strengths include classics, theology, English literature, art, travel, private presses, theatrical history, books on Eton and Windsor and fine bindings.

Find out more about the library on their Discover information page.

National Library of Scotland

The National Library of Scotland is a reference library with world-class collections. It is also Scotland’s largest library and one of the major research libraries in Europe. Their collections range from rare historical documents to online journals, covering every subject. They specialise in Scotland’s knowledge, history and culture.

Find out more about the library on their Discover information page.

University of Coventry

Coventry University Library

Coventry University Library

Coventry University’s library is situated in the Frederick Lanchester Building, and houses physical resources for the whole University. It is open 364 days a year, 24 hours a day – only closing for Christmas Day.

** Coming soon on our blog: feature on the University of Coventry’s collections! **

Find out more about the library on their Discover information page.

Explore their collections on Discover

  • Selecting the search code to the right of each library name on the About page enables you search for all the records from an individual library.
  • To browse or limit your search to the holdings of any library, or a group of libraries, use Advanced Search to select the Libraries tab in Discover and choose the library name(s) from the list of libraries.

Treasures of the Linnean Society of London Library

The Linnean Society of London, founded by James Edward Smith in 1788, is the world’s oldest learned society devoted to the biological sciences. It was created as a forum for scientific discussion, and as a home for the magnificent book, manuscript, and specimen collections of the Swedish naturalist and “father of taxonomy”, Carl Linnaeus. It has fulfilled both of these functions for over 230 years.

Plate 7 from Edward Lear’s Illustrations of the family of Psittacidœ, or parrots. Macrocercus aracanga (red and yellow Maccaw). London: E. Lear, 1832.

Plate 7 from Edward Lear’s Illustrations of the family of Psittacidœ, or parrots. Macrocercus aracanga (red and yellow Maccaw). London: E. Lear, 1832.

Linnaeus’ collections came to London by a rather circuitous route. They were originally left to Linnaeus’ son (also called Carl, also a naturalist), but Carl Filius died young, and with four other children to provide for, Linnaeus’s widow Sara Lisa was forced to sell. She approached the buccaneering explorer and scientific patron Joseph Banks, who recommended a sale to Smith, then a promising botanist recently graduated from the University of Edinburgh. Smith snapped up the huge collection of books, manuscripts, and nearly 14,000 specimens for the bargain price of £1,000 (around £76,000 in today’s money). They are now housed in a purpose-built, bombproof vault beneath the teeming shoppers of Piccadilly.

Perhaps the most famous event in the Society’s history occurred on July 1st, 1858, when two papers were presented to a meeting of the Fellowship. “Extract from a book on the production of varieties” and “On the tendency of varieties to depart from the type” may not sound especially gripping, but they represent the first public presentation of the theory of evolution by natural selection by Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace. Embarrassingly, the Society’s President at the time failed to recognise the importance of the event, and his end of year oration lamented the lack of any “striking discoveries which at once revolutionize the department of science on which they bear”.

Dianthus fruticosus from John Sibthorpe and Ferdinand Bauer’s Flora Graeca. London: Taylor, 1806-37.

Dianthus fruticosus from John Sibthorpe and Ferdinand Bauer’s Flora Graeca. London: Taylor, 1806-37.

We have attempted to atone for this oversight in the following centuries, and the Linnean Society now holds perhaps the finest collection of Darwin and Wallace material outside of a major research library. In 2016, the Society was grateful to receive the Darwin/Wallace collection of Quentin Keynes (Darwin’s great-Grandson, and a noted traveller in his own right). The 300 or so books represent a nearly complete bibliography of Darwin and Wallace’s published works, including a number of exceedingly rare first editions and presentation copies. A condition of the original gift, made by Quentin’s relative Randal Keynes, was that the collection see active use in teaching and research, and so the Society is keen to promote its use among scholars and students.

Prunus Americana from Dissertatio de generatione et metamorphosibus insectorum Surinamensium. Hagae Comitum: Petrum Gosse, 1726.

Prunus Americana from Dissertatio de generatione et metamorphosibus insectorum Surinamensium. Hagae Comitum: Petrum Gosse, 1726.

Other treasures in the Society’s library include Linnaeus’s personal copies of his own works (including Systema Naturae and Species Plantarum), many painstakingly annotated by the man himself. We also have an impressive number of prestige works on natural history, including a hand-coloured Sibthorpe and Bauer Flora Graeca; two copies of Maria Sybilla Merian’s Insectorum Surinamensium (one coloured from 1719, one uncoloured from 1726); a very rare complete edition of Edward Lear’s Illustrations of the Family of Psittacidae, or Parrots; Mark Catesby’s 1731 Natural History of Carolina; a number of incunabula (including the fascinating Ortus Sanitatis of 1491, with its eye-catching mythical creatures), among many other rare and early-printed books on natural history, taxonomy, early medicine, and scientific illustration.

The main reading room.

The main reading room.

All the annotated items in Linnaeus’s personal library, plus many other books, manuscripts, and specimens from our collections, have been digitised by the Society, and can be accessed free-of-charge on our dedicated platform Linnean Online. If you would like to visit the Society in person, we are open 10am-5pm, Monday to Friday. Users consulting material in the Library are strongly advised to contact us first, so material can be prepared ahead of your arrival. You can search our library catalogue via this link (and on Library Hub Discover, of course!). Researchers looking for archival material can search our new archives catalogue, here. Visitors are also welcome to join one of our monthly Treasure’s Tours, among myriad other classes, lectures, exhibitions and events. Many of these events are offered to the public for free. Full details of goings-on at the Society can be found on our website.

Will Beharrell

Explore the Linnean Society of London Library’s collections on Library Hub Discover:

  • Browse their records here.
  • Find out more about the library, including full contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.

All images © The Linnean Society of London, 2020.

Results of a community consultation: recording retention commitments

Back in June last year the Jisc Collection Management Community Advisory Board issued a brief survey, circulated to various mailing lists.  The aim of the consultation was to gauge community appetite for adopting a common approach to recording retention information in bibliographic records.

We received 39 responses, the majority of which were positive about the principle of incorporating retention information in bibliographic records:

Pie chart depicting 94.7% answering Yes to the question

Over 50% of respondents’ institutions were currently incorporating, or planned to incorporate retention information in bibliographic records:

Of those already doing so, the most regularly cited MARC field used was 583.  Of those with plans to do so, several had not yet decided on the field to use.

All respondents agreed that they would be prepared to use a standardised format for recording retention information if recommended/endorsed by the community and/or representative bodies.  Reasons given for responses included:

“standardisation is key to sharable records”

“Standardised format enables data exchange and sharing.”

“We like to adopt agreed metadata standards where they exist”

“If everybody using the same standards then would be easier to interpret what others are doing”

Following the results of the survey, and additional discussions, the CMCAB decided to proceed in working on some recommendations around the use of standardised retention codes during the Autumn.

Watch this space for an update on the results of that work shortly.

144 Library catalogues and counting!

The Library Hub Discover service went live at the end of July last year, involving a whirlwind of activity behind the scenes for our team! Now that things have settled down a bit, we are delighted to announce that, to date, we have loaded the library catalogues of 144 of the UK’s national, academic and specialist research libraries.

If you are a member of a UK university there is a good chance your own library will be a contributor, allowing you to see your local library materials as well as those of other institutions.

Almost all of the libraries previously available on Copac (and SUNCAT) have been made available on Discover. There are some outstanding as we are dependent on each library sending us their data and a small number haven’t yet been able to do so. However, we are discussion with them and hope to have their data to load soon.

Meanwhile, we have been adding a range of new libraries. Here we highlight a selection of these:

University of Hull

Brynmor Jones Library, University of Hull

Brynmor Jones Library, University of Hull

The Brynmor Jones Library is a single branch library that serves the University of Hull. The collection comprises over 1,000,000 items, plus nearly 400,000 eBooks and 70,000 eJournal titles: there are also extensive collections of printed music and playbills as well as a rare book collection based around the collections of local churches and schools going back over 500 years.

The Library is based in a purpose-built building in the centre of the University campus, and was completely refurbished and developed in 2014. The building is open to the public on the ground floor, which incorporates the University Art Collection and Exhibition Hall as well as a cafe and teaching rooms.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.

The Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures

The Lisa Sainsbury Library in Norwich is one of the most comprehensive reference libraries for the study of Japanese art history and archaeology. Its collection covers major aspects of Japanese arts, cultures, archaeology, cultural heritage and architecture from general introductory level books to advanced study reference materials.

The Library holds over 45,000 books dated from the 17th century to the present, and journals, exhibition catalogues and over 100 items of old maps, prints and other materials. Many of the old maps and prints can be viewed online. The Library is accessible free of charge and open by appointment to researchers interested in Japanese studies.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.
Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures

Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures

Royal Library – Royal Collection

The current Royal Library was established by William IV (r.1830–37) in a series of three rooms adapted from Tudor and Stuart parts of the State Apartments at Windsor Castle. Earlier Royal Libraries were presented to the nation in 1757 by George II (the Old Royal Library) and in 1823 by George IV (the King’s Library). Both collections now form a core part of the British Library. At his accession, William IV had access to the private libraries of George III, and of George IV at Carlton House. Both kings were avid book collectors and their libraries contained a wide array of material. William IV brought these libraries together at Windsor and added to them considerably.

In 1860, the Royal Library was rearranged by Prince Albert and the then Librarian, Bernard Woodward. This project saw the Library organised by subject area. This arrangement remains in place to the present day. The reign of Queen Victoria saw major additions to the Library. Subsequent Librarians oversaw the acquisition of new books from throughout the British Empire as well as the acquisition of historical material with Royal provenance or of particular historic interest.

The Royal Library continued to collect throughout the twentieth century and does so today. The Library’s collection has more than quadrupled in size since its reorganisation in 1860, and currently contains over 200,000 items, including many modern reference works, reflecting the work of the Royal Household, Royal Collection Trust and the particular interests of successive Librarians.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.

Scottish Poetry Library

Scottish Poetry Library

Scottish Poetry Library

The Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh is a unique national resource and advocate for the art of poetry, and Scottish poetry in particular. It is publicly accessible and provides a free lending service.

The collections include poetry magazines and journals, audio-visual material, special collections, and the Edwin Morgan Archive.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.

Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (RWCMD) / Coleg Brenhinol Cerdd a Drama Cymruhas in Cardiff has a collection with a focus on performance.

Collections number over 70,000 items: books, playscripts, journals, performance scores, orchestral sets and audio/visual material.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.
Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

The Geological Society of London

Geological Society of London

Geological Society of London

The Geological Society Library is one of the largest geological libraries in the world and collects current post-graduate material in all the main fields of Earth sciences. It holds in Burlington House approximately 300,000 volumes of books and serials going back to the 16th century and subscribes to around 600 printed and electronic journal titles.

Its map collection is of national importance and comprises over 40,000 items dating from the beginning of geological mapping through to the present.

The Library also maintains the Society’s archives (from its foundation), modern records and a number of special collections including the William Smith, George Bellas Greenough, Louis Agassiz and Dan McKenzie Collections.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.

Institute of Naval Medicine – Historic Collections

The Institute of Naval Medicine (INM) is a Centre of Excellence bringing together scientists and medical professionals to improve the health of the UK Armed Forces. The Historic Collections Library is held in INM’s Monckton House, Gosport. The books it holds were the working collections of the Victorian naval surgeons and physicians at the Royal Naval Hospitals of Haslar (Gosport) and Stonehouse (Plymouth), with a few titles from other naval establishments. The collections now comprise one of the few specific resources for naval medical history.

As well as medical and surgical coverage, there is material on all areas of natural history, but especially medical botany, and on ethnology and voyages of travel and exploration, including Polar exploration. The bulk of the collection was accumulated between 1828 and 1878, although the earliest book dates to 1564 and there are many 17th- and 18th-century medical texts; a bequest from one naval surgeon accounts for a scatter of classical and early 19th-century European literature.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.
Institute of Naval Medicine, Historic Collections Library

Institute of Naval Medicine, Historic Collections Library

Manchester Public Libraries Rare books & Collections

Manchester Public Libraries special collections include many book rarities, such as the Elizabeth Gaskell Collection, DeQuincey, Coleridge, Alexander Ireland Collections, private presses, political/ religious tracts. They also include rare printed music manuscripts from the Henry Watson Music Library, for example Handel – Newman Flower Collection, Gilbert and Sullivan.

  • Find out more about the library, including contact details and visitor information, on their Discover information page.
  • Browse their records here.

Explore More Libraries

All the institutions and organisations included in Library Hub Discover are shown on our About page.

> Selecting the search code to the right of each library name on the About page enables you search for all the records from an individual library.

> Use Advanced Search to select multiple libraries.

We’ll be highlighting libraries and collections in more detail via this blog, and regularly announcing newly added libraries, so watch this space for more posts #LibraryHubDiscover! You can also follow us on Twitter @JiscLibraryHub.

Library Hub Discover: Interface enhancements

Interface enhancements

We are appreciative of the feedback we’ve had on the Library Hub Discover interface and in response to this we’ve introduced a couple of changes, with a focus on enhancing the record displays.

A more concise result list

When you do a search your result list will now be more compact and you will be seeing more documents on the screen. If you look at the list of holding libraries for each document this now shows a maximum of 7 libraries. If you wish to see the remainder, select the ‘show’ option at the end of the library list eg. …  If you select a document title the full list of holding libraries is always shown in the full record display.

Summary holdings

In the result list, select a document title to see the full record display, then look below the document details and you’ll see a new option to view ‘Summary holdings’. If you select this you’ll see a table listing all the libraries that hold that document, with basic information about the location and any copy notes. This may be most useful for journals, for which it will include summary details of the available volumes at each library, where we have this information.

Note, the Summary holdings table:

  • doesn’t give live availability information, so it will not tell you whether a book is on loan and it may not include detailed volume information for journals.
  • it includes some notes about a copy of a document, but where records have a range of local notes, such as the name of a previous owner of the document, this information won’t be included.

To see the full holdings display for each library select a library name. The holdings display will have all the local notes, as well as live availability data where possible – which lets you check if a document is on loan and, if so, when it is due back. For some documents a single institution may have multiple copies in different branch libraries, each listed on a separate line of the table. In this case, if you select the library name this will always take you to the same holdings display, with information about all the available copies at that institution.

We are continuing to work on the interface and will be introducing further changes in coming months. If you have comments about the recent changes or requests for other features, please contact us via mentioning Library Hub Discover.

Season’s Greetings and Christmas Closure

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from the Library Hub team!

Library Hub Discover Support will be taking a break from 24th December until 6th January.

Photo by Ashley Sanders: Winter in the Peak District

Photo by Ashley Sanders: Winter in the Peak District

The Library Hub services – Discover, Compare and Cataloguing – will be available over Christmas and New Year. Any queries sent over this period will be dealt with when we return.

What is “Plan M”?

Plan M is a very wide-ranging discussion that has been going on throughout the second half of 2019 involving many different stakeholders across the library community. The ‘M’ stands for ‘metadata’.

In a nutshell, the way that metadata for academic and specialist libraries is created, sold, licensed, shared and re-used in the UK needs a re-think. Plan M is an initiative that is being facilitated by Jisc but is really a conversation between libraries, suppliers and intermediary organisations to streamline the metadata marketplace in the UK so that it is more coherent, transparent, robust and sustainable.

The catalyst for this conversation has been a focus on aggregating and sharing library data at a new ambitious scale via the National Bibliographic Knowledgebase (NBK) and through Jisc Library Hub  services.

Three new resources are available:

A concise description of Plan M objectives and next steps as of December 2019

A fuller description of Plan M providing more context and definition

A synthesis of discussions relating to Plan M during the period May – October 2019

We will be in touch with all stakeholders in the New Year to take forward this plan and look forward to working with everybody. Needless to say, if anyone has comments or queries about Plan M then drop us a line at

Best wishes and a merry Xmas

The NBK Team

Collection Management: Share the Experience @ event summaries

Summaries of Collection Management: Share the Experience events from 2015 – 2019 are provided below:
Collections Management: Share the Experience @ Royal Holloway 11th & 12th June 2019
This year’s Collection Management: Share the Experience event, our 5th, was extended to become a two day affair, hosted in the beautiful surroundings of Royal Holloway, University of London.  Thanks to the tireless commitment of David Morgan and his colleagues at Royal Holloway library, and the many presenters who contributed, we were treated to a wide ranging, challenging and fascinating selection of presentations and workshops.
Presenters have been kind enough to share their presentations as follows:
Making moves – lessons from a library migration David Morgan (Royal Holloway)
Getting the balance right Catherine Parker (University of Huddersfield)
Collection categorisation break out session notes David Morgan (Royal Holloway) and Frances Machell (University of Birmingham),  Plus case studies from Bristol, Leeds, York and RHUL
Collaborative collection management updates: Nick Barratt (Senate House); Jane Daniels (WHELF); Suzy Cheeke (GW4); Lorna Mitchell (SCURL); Diana Massam (Jisc)
Stock management – helping customers find their books Natasha Viner (University of Manchester)
Academic engagement – shall we get engaged? Ann Stairmand-Jackson and Graham Gamblin (Birmingham City University)
UKRR – from project to service Andy Appleyard (British Library)
NBK updates Diana Massam, (Jisc)
Breakout – Visualising UKRR for monographs plus padlet summary of inputs Theo Stubbs (Imperial College)
NBK Community Data Groups updates Amy Staniforth (Aberystwyth University) (presented by Jane Daniels)
Metadata Summit: report Jane Daniels (Cardiff Metropolitan University); Suzy Cheeke (University of Bristol)
University of Birmingham’s new library – 3 years on Frances Machell (University of Birmingham)
Integrating collection management Robin Armstrong-Viner (University of Kent)

Collections Management: Share the Experience @ Edinburgh 29th June 2018
The fourth national Collection Management event was hosted by the University of Edinburgh Library on 29th June in the beautiful Edinburgh sunshine!  It was another day of fascinating presentations, a really thought provoking breakout session and plenty of discussion and debate.  The success of these events lies as much in the connections and informal discussions between delegates as in the range of formal sessions.  To me, there is definitely a sense that a professional community of practice has developed around collection management with these events as a focus.
The 5th event is already in the pipeline, probably to be held in the summer 2019, so keep an eye out for announcements on the mailing list.
In the meantime, the presenters at CM@ Edinburgh have kindly agreed to share their presentations below:
Hannah Mateer, University of Edinburgh  Collections management at Edinburgh
Anna Grigson, LSE Making an exhibition of our shelves: engaging users with print collections
Amy O’Donohoe, Royal Holloway, University of London Data collection for collections management Plus Slide Notes
Karen Thomas, Suzy Cheeke, Jan Davey, University of Bristol Breakout session: The decision tree and collection management plus summary of themes which emerged from discussion during the session.
Ian Jennings, University of Leeds  Collections management at Leeds
Jill Evans, SCURL
Jane Daniels, WHELF
Matt Wigzell, White Rose
Suzy Cheeke, GW4
Dr Nick Barrett, University of London Libraries
Diana Massam, National Bibliographic Knowledgebase
Kevin Wilson, LSE How do our collections support and reflect teaching and research at LSE

Collections Management: Share the Experience @ Hull 7th September 2017
The University of Hull Library hosted a third national Collections Management event on Thursday 7th September.  As UK City of Culture 2017 it was a great time to visit the city and another stimulating and lively day was had by all.  Thanks to RLUK for administrative support.
The presenters have all kindly agreed to make their presentations available:
Neil Grindley & Bethan Ruddock, Jisc The National Bibliographic Knowledgebase: project update
David Morgan, Royal Holloway, University of London Project Management in Libraries
Ruth Elder, University of York Applying a collections categorisation framework at York: a pilot project at the University of York
Hannah Mateer, University of Edinburgh Collections Rationalisation at the University of Edinburgh
Vanessa McHugh, University of Manchester From here to posterity: managing low use collections at the University of Manchester
Maggie Sarjantson & Lisa McFarlane, University of Hull From Spa town to City of Culture: decommissioning a campus library

On Thursday 30th March, Michael Williams and his team opened the doors of the Bodleian Libraries Book Storage Facility in Swindon, having given members of the Collection Management community a rare opportunity to visit.  Anne Worden, who visited from the University of Portsmouth, kindly agreed to us posting her report on our blog:
Visit to Bodleian Libraries Book Storage Facility, Swindon, 30/3/17
Oxford opened this facility in October 2010 as a replacement for multiple other stores, including a salt mine in Cheshire, which were becoming very expensive. It is in one corner of a 17 acre site which the university bought and they will be expanding the current warehouse over the next 4 years at the same time as building a store for the Oxford University museums.
The current capacity is 13 million items with 8.9m being stored, so about three quarters full. They “ingest” (accession) about 7,000 new items per week, making just under 400,000 each year. The conditions meet BS5454 and PD5454, with the temperature being 17.5°C (+ or – 1°C) and the humidity 52% (+ or – 5) – 15,000 sprinkler heads are in place in case of fire. Items are stored in acid free, archival quality, strong cardboard box trays.
Stock is stored on 11m high, German-engineered (no leaning forward!!), metal shelves which are 70m long with 31 narrow aisles between them. Three aisles contain a huge run of map cabinets spread over 5 floors. All other items are stored by size and most have a barcode stuck on the top left hand corner to aid quick retrieval – those that don’t have the barcode stuck onto them have the barcode on a slip of paper sticking out the top but this isn’t ideal as the barcodes get mixed up when people borrow several items like this at the same time. Six forklift trucks are used to enable 8 retrievals of stock a day between 7am and 10pm, Monday to Friday – seeing the pod of the forklift rise up 10m to get something then move forward at that height to the next retrieval was quite a sight!
They get approximately 19,500 requests each month, a figure which has increased year on year. They think the increase is due to the speed and reliability of the service – vans deliver to libraries around Oxford twice a day and if you order by 10.30am in the morning, you can have the book the same day. Unexpectedly, medium use stock has been stored there as well as low use stock, as librarians have discovered that putting copies into the store actually makes them more accessible to users in different libraries around Oxford because of the frequent delivery service.
In addition to the delivery service, they also provide a scanning service and scan about 50-60 items per week in term. The reader gets a link to a server and then has 2 weeks to access the article/chapter. The scan stays on their system for a term just in case of retrieval problems, then gets deleted. They have just dropped the price of scans from £4 to £2 in order to encourage more use of this service.
There are 22 staff working in shifts and the key contact is Michael Williams, Head of Storage and Logistics. Because they will have spare capacity for the foreseeable future, they are keen to encourage other universities to use the facility – Cambridge are currently storing their newer legal deposit collection there whilst they wait for their own store to be built. Stock for other institutions is stored on separate aisles so can’t get mixed up with the Oxford stock. Michael said that he is happy to provide price estimates based on exact requirements.
Jenny Yaacob and I came away extremely impressed by the scale and efficiency of the whole set-up. If we were to consider off-site storage for legacy items, I would certainly recommend investigating what they could offer us, as nothing we could do ourselves would match their skilled operation.
AW 31/3/17

Collections Management: Share the Experience @ Bristol 2nd February 2016
The second national Collections Management event was hosted by the University of Bristol Library, in association with Jisc, RLUK and SCONUL.  It was a popular and  successful event stimulating discussion and debate from delegates representing the Collections Management community.
Presenters kindly agreed to make their presentation slides available as follows:
Jo Aitkins (University of Leicester), Chloe Barnes (University of Sussex) and Anna Grigson (LSE) took part in a panel discussion following on from themes raised at the York event.  Jo and Chloe produced slides on Gifts and Collection Management Policies respectively which are available here: Bristol Panel Slides.
Slides from the subsequent presentations are available as follows:
Neil Grindley, Jisc From Strategy to Solutions a National Bibliographic Knowledgebase
Frances Machell, University of Birmingham Eating the elephant: reclassification and preparation for a major library move
Laurence Bebington, University Of Aberdeen  Loosening the Bounds of Copyright and Licensing: How Recent Reforms to Copyright can Facilitate Better Collection Management and Access

Collections Management: Share the Experience @ York 7th July 2015
This inaugural event, hosted by the University of York Library in association with Jisc, RLUK and SCONUL was a very successful opportunity for the Collection Management community to meet, share good practice and discuss common issues and activities.
Presenters have kindly agreed to make their presentation slides available as follows:
The Dark Art of Managing an External Store Jo Aitkins (University of Leicester)
Developing and implementing a Library Collections Policy to deliver and support ‘more’ Laura Shanahan (University of Edinburgh)
Collections analysis at University of St Andrews Helen Faulds (University of St Andrews)
Collection development or data driven content curation? Rachel Kirkwood (University of Manchester)
Collaborative Collection Management: SCURL’s experience Richard Parsons and Jill Evans (SCURL)
WHELF: Collections Management Collaboration within Wales Mark Hughes (Swansea University)

You said, we did: Library hub discover

You always hope for lots of feedback when launching a new service, especially when it replaces a service as long-standing and valued as Copac. We’d like to thank everyone who has taken the time to provide us with feedback on the new Discover service.

We’ve been using this feedback to help us identify and prioritise areas for improvement, and have already made some changes based on what you’ve told us. Some examples of these are:

You said:

Make it easier to find the advanced search options.

We did:

Added an ‘advanced search’ tab, as well as the ‘more search options’ link.


You said:

Can you bring back the option to sort results e.g. by year published, which was available in COPAC? It is very helpful if you want to find e.g. the most recent thing written by someone.

We did:

The Discover results list is now sortable by date (oldest first), date (newest first), title (A-Z), title (Z-A), and rank.


You said:

Make it compatible with Zotero as COPAC was.

We did:

Reinstated COinS which allows Zotero and Mendeley to work on Discover.


You said:

Fix the connector with the British Library

We did:

Worked with the British Library to enable linking from their catalogue to Discover.


You said:

Having done a ‘Basic Search’ with too many results, it would be good when you click on ‘More Search Options’ to have the original keywords carried across to the Advanced search, rather than just reach a blank screen.

We did:

Clicking ‘More search options’ now retains your original search terms in the Advanced search screen.


You said:

Display problem with the library live holdings data for journals – details appear briefly then disappear

We did:

Changed how we handled live holdings lookup and display to resolve this problem.


This is a non-exhaustive list: there are other issues we’ve resolved, and some that we’re still working on and hope to be able to implement in the future. Look out for more ‘you said, we did’ blog posts with information about these.

If you’d like to let us know what you think about Library hub discover please use the ‘give feedback’ link in the footer of each page, or email, with ‘Library hub discover’ in the subject line.

Discovering Collections, Discovering Communities – what’s not to like?

The full title of the DCDC annual conference, Discovering Collections, Discovering Communities has a ‘does exactly what it says on the tin’ quality to it. Anyone who has attended a DCDC conference will probably have come away with at least two impressions of the event. Firstly, surprise at the sheer quantity and diversity of material that is being carefully curated and made accessible by libraries, archives and digital collections. And secondly, just how committed and passionate people are about the materials, records, documents, images, recordings, films, etc. that they are responsible for. The extent to which these archives and collections are being used in research, teaching and audience engagement is impressive.

DCDC18 welcome reception – Ikon Gallery, Birmingham

The DCDC Conference was first organised by RLUK (Research Libraries UK) and TNA (The UK National Archives) in 2013 and from the outset appears to have correctly identified a gap in provision for an event that enables organisations with responsibility for collections to discuss issues, barriers, problems and opportunities. The value of congregating in one place, face-to-face, for a few dedicated days to share stories and swap notes may be tricky to formally quantify in terms of a cost-benefit calculation – but it is relatively easy to justify in terms of connections made, ideas sparked, inspiration, motivation, and knowledge gained.

For example, at the 2017 conference, I found myself having to completely recalibrate my ideas about risk management after listening to the courageous exploits of North Somerset Council as they worked in secret with the anonymous artist Banksy to create a complex and provocative art installation in support of their regeneration plan for Weston-Super-Mare.1 In 2018, Jo Fox’s keynote made the increasingly urgent and critical connection between the role of archives and the emergence of the concept of ‘fake news’ – both in terms of the importance of ensuring an accurate cultural record and of the implicit problems of archiving propaganda.2

In 2019, Jisc joined forces with RLUK and TNA as a co-organiser of the conference series and we are delighted to be taking a more hands-on role with an event that we have always viewed as an essential date in the calendar. One of the biggest issues that organisations and individuals who are responsible for collections face is how best to exploit all the opportunities that digital technologies offer. Whilst our organising partners are clearly ideally placed to represent and champion libraries and archives as types of institution, Jisc is uniquely suited to provide support and advocacy for a wide range of relevant digital content, methods and solutions.

Working collaboratively to provide a forum for diverse communities to come together to explore best practice and find ways to get useful and interesting content in front of learners and researchers is an exemplary way for Jisc to work on behalf of its members. Not only does it practically support discovery and help to disseminate collections, it is a great opportunity to push the digital agenda and to spot trends, identify gaps and clarify requirements across a wide range of stakeholder organisations.

We are looking forward to welcoming delegates to Birmingham on 12th – 14th November 2019 for what promises to be another diverse and inspiring programme of sessions and workshops. Registration closes on 11th October so if you haven’t got your tickets yet – you need to get a move on!

Register at the conference website –

  1. Dismaland by Banksy –
  2. Jo Fox (Director of the Institute of Historical Research), ‘Fake News’ Into the 21st Century, DCDC18,