Carnegie Partners for Carnegie Library Lab Announced

November 17, 2014

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The winners are:

 ·        David Hayden, Edinburgh City Libraries and Information Services

·         Ben Burhouse, Kirklees Libraries

·         Eileen Russell, Libraries NI

·         Claire Lewis, Monmouthshire County Council Libraries and Information Service

·         Aude Charillon, Newcastle Libraries

·         Helen McMahon, South Dublin County Council Libraries

·         Anish Noble-Harrison, Swindon Libraries

Each of the participants will receive funding of between £5,000 and £15,000 to develop an innovative project in their library service. They will also have access to a new programme of online learning material to encourage innovation and leadership, be provided with a mentor and have the opportunity to take part in networking and learning events. The impact of the Carnegie Library Lab programme is to be independently evaluated by social research company Blake Stevenson Ltd.

Douglas White, Head of Advocacy, Carnegie UK Trust said: “We received a high volume of excellent applications to take part in Carnegie Library Lab and we are incredibly grateful to all of those who took the time and effort to apply. We would like to thank our expert Advisory Group for navigating their way through some tough decisions to select the winning applications. We are delighted with the projects that have been selected to participate in the programme and we are looking forward to working with all of our new Carnegie Partners over the next 18 months.”

Ciara Estell, President of Society of Chief Librarians for England, Wales and Northern Ireland said: “I was really impressed by the standard of applications for the Carnegie Library Lab.  The selected Carnegie Partners will have first class support and training to enable them to develop innovative solutions for public libraries.

“On behalf of SCL, I wish all the successful candidates good luck and all our support for this exciting journey.  For those not successful this time, I would encourage individuals to talk to their Head of Libraries about how their ideas can be taken forward locally.  Innovation and fresh thinking are important components for ensuring public libraries thrive within their local communities in the future and I congratulate the Carnegie UK Trust for making this very welcome investment in the future of the public library service.”

Applications for Carnegie Library Lab were invited throughout September. The Carnegie UK Trust received 80 applications from library staff looking for support for their innovative projects. The winning applicants were selected by an expert Advisory Group including representatives from the Trust, the Society of Chief Librarians, CILIP, Arts Council England, Scottish Library and Information Council, the Local Government Management Agency in the Republic of Ireland, CyMAL and Libraries NI.

Annie Mauger, CILIP Chief Executive said: “I am so pleased to congratulate the teams behind the winning funding bids to the Carnegie UK Trust’s Library Lab programme.  We have active, committed professionals running our public libraries who jump at the opportunity to bring fresh ideas to the public library service and have the skills to open up all sorts of new information opportunities to members of the public. This investment in our public libraries is so important because it’s looking to the future and developing people’s potential through coding classes, technology hubs, and much more.”

The winning projects:

Northern Ireland (Libraries NI). Eileen Russell, Libraries Northern Ireland, Ballymena. Her library project Rub-a-dub-hub: Libraries NI virtual support for parents will create a virtual library for pre-school children and their parents to help boost the literacy rate of children when they start school.

England (Swindon): Anish Noble-Harrison, Central Library, Swindon. Her library project Get on your library bike! will see a ‘library bike’ taken out into the community to highlight what the library service can offer in a fun and interesting way through the likes of storytelling sessions, puppets, costumes and rhyme sessions.

Republic of Ireland (Dublin): Helen McMahon, South Dublin County Council Libraries. Her library project The Library After Dark Writers will see the library come alive after hours once a month on a Friday from 6:30-9:30pm. It will provide a writers café to support new or emerging writers and also a space for writers to spend time working on their materials.

Wales (Monmouthshire): Claire Lewis, Chepstow Library, Monmouthshire County Council. Her  library project The Ideas Garage will create a community led coding space to be used by people who want to gain and share skills and experience of coding to create and develop websites/games to increase their employability.

Scotland (Edinburgh):  David Hayden, Edinburgh City Libraries and Information Services. His library project Digital Toybox will see libraries within Edinburgh become technology hubs each with a toybox developed around a specific creative theme, ranging from video work, app or game design, programming skills, to music editing. Digital champions from among staff, schools and partner organisations will deliver the project which will include developing a mentor support system for young people using the service.

England (Newcastle upon Tyne): Aude Charillon, City Library, Charles Avison, Newcastle, Newcastle Libraries. Her library project Public domain, open culture and users’ rights will encourage members of the community to discover, use and create copyright-free works such as e-books and images while educating them on copyright laws and their own digital rights.

England (Huddersfield): Ben Burhouse, Kirklees Libraries. His library idea Kirklees Libraries Information showcase will use a cloud-based presentation and storytelling tool called Prezi to help create context around library statistical reports.


For more information about Carnegie Library Lab please click here.

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