I've taken on a challenging/fun writing project for 2016: summing up social media in libraries 2010-2015, for the next edition of British Librarianship and Information Work. Crumbs! The deadline is autumn 2016, but I've started work already as the piece will need a great deal of planning, research and reflection. Finding information and evidence so … Continue reading Why do librarians tweet about cake?
Discovering Collections, Discovering Communities, a joint effort by RLUK and The National Archives, is fast becoming a must-attend conference for archives and special collections folk. The idea? We face tough times and huge challenges: let's collaborate and find new ways to survive and thrive. The second in the series was held last week in the … Continue reading The Pukka Pad and the Big Cake: #DCDC14 Conference Part 1
On 24 October I went along to a great event offering "a playful space" for discussing heritage activities in Yorkshire: Heritage Show+Tell. This uses a very effective format: 3 minutes, 3 slides per speaker. No long presentations to write, no big commitment of time, a friendly and supportive atmosphere. The projects all had some relevance … Continue reading Show, Tell + Play: sharing heritage projects and stuffed animals in Yorkshire
Delighted to reveal A Cabinet of Gems! It's our new Tumblr account. I'm using it to share appealing out-of-copyright images from Special Collections at Bradford, like this lovely 1920s girl on a photo wallet from the Jacquetta Hawkes Archive. Why (yet) another blog? I've realised for a while that I needed something to fill the … Continue reading A Tumblr full of Gems
How do we find out what users (and non-users) think of our services? We need to know this in order to ensure our services meet their needs and to argue our case for resources to improve them. Pretty obvious stuff, but it can be hard to get that feedback, to manage it, and to make … Continue reading Dear Special Collections, your service is …
... Flaunt it! Exhibitions of special collections are a wonderful way to reach audiences who might never think or wish to use them in a reading room setting. However, it isn't easy to create exhibitions and most of us struggle with limited funding and space problems. Speakers at the 2011 CILIP Rare Books and Special … Continue reading If you’ve got it …
I just discovered (thanks to an academic colleague) a very useful dissertation available online. Elizabeth Morgan's dissertation (UCL, 2010), Delivering Value for Money: why and how institutional archives should market themselves to their internal publics, explains why internal marketing/advocacy is absolutely essential. She includes lots of great realistic examples of what can be done, drawn … Continue reading Delivering Value for Money: Internal Marketing Matters
Special Collections at the University of St Andrews have been running a weekly series: 52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, highlighting the gorgeous bindings of their rare books and manuscripts. I mentioned this great series before, but, now that the 52 Weeks are over, I think it's time to mention it again! The series is worth … Continue reading 52 Fantastic Bindings – what next?
A new report, Exhibiting the Written Word, makes the excellent point that "there has been little reflection on the challenges of displaying the written word and how such displays differ from the display of art and museum artefacts". The report outlines the challenges e.g. book formats were not (usually) created to be shown in glass … Continue reading Exhibiting the Written Word