Trust announces 3rd round of Library Lab

December 6, 2017

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The Carnegie UK Trust is delighted to announce that it will be extending the Carnegie Library Lab programme for a third round. The programme will open for applications on January 9th 2018.

Carnegie Library Lab provides a unique opportunity for public library staff across the UK and Ireland to develop skills, expertise and experience in innovation and leadership.   The initiative, which has supported 13 participants to date, across two cohorts, offers:

  • financial support for participants to develop and deliver an innovative, practical project in their local library service;
  • exclusive access to a bespoke online learning programme to support innovation, leadership and skills development;
  • access to an external mentor to assist with project management and personal development;
  • networking events including face-to-face meetings and online platform; and
  • an external evaluation.

The new funding round will run during 2018-19 and will open for applications on January 9th 2018. The application form will be available on the Trust’s website at

Martyn Evans, Chief Executive, Carnegie UK Trust said: “Public libraries are essential community resources, enabling people to fulfil their potential and contributing towards wellbeing. Carnegie Library Lab provides staff with funding, mentoring and a safe space within which to experiment and build experience, with the aim of supporting and developing innovation and leadership in the public library sector. We have been deeply impressed with the work of all of those who have participated in Library Lab to date and we are delighted to be able to extend this programme to support another group of library staff.”

Neil MacInnes, President of the Society of Chief Librarians said: Carnegie Library Lab provides a unique opportunity for library staff across the UK and Ireland to be creative, manage a project and develop professionally and personally. As we continue to promote the vital role that libraries play in changing lives, it is important that innovation and leadership in the sector is fostered and developed though programmes such as Library Lab.

Helen McMahon, Carnegie Partner from Cohort 1, Senior Librarian at South Dublin Libraries said: “My involvement in the Carnegie Library Lab was the high point in my professional career so far. The online training and face-to-face networking events gave me a space and a framework to reflect on my practice as a librarian – what I do and why I do it. The support for my project was invaluable and helped me to achieve things I would not otherwise have achieved. The boost to my confidence was tremendous so that when an opportunity for promotion arose, I did not hesitate and was successful. I am now in a new role in Libraries Development delivering programmes and outreach events, a role that is wonderfully challenging and thoroughly enjoyable.”

More information about the participants, projects and outcomes from previous rounds of the programme can be found on the Library Lab page on the CUKT website.

The Trust is looking for applicants in early or mid-management roles that have an innovative idea that they would like to implement or develop in their library, and who have a commitment to self-development and collaborative working.

For more information please contact Rachel Heydecker, Policy and Development Officer at [email protected]